The Liberal Opposition is calling on the Higgs government to extend the deadline to renew documents and open all Service New Brunswick locations. Today, June 30th, is the deadline to renew all licences, registrations, certificates and permits that expired since the pandemic began.
“We recognize that the government has made it easier to renew some of these documents online, but that doesn’t work for everyone,” says Caraquet MLA Isabelle Thériault. “Not everyone has easy access to a computer with internet connection, especially in rural areas where internet connection is already of lower quality, and not everyone has a credit card or is comfortable putting their credit card information online.”
Like many Service New Brunswick locations around the province the Caraquet SNB office has been closed since the State of Emergency was declared. This leaves only the Service New Brunswick in Tracadie partially open, by appointment only, to service all the Acadian Peninsula.
“Some of my constituents are calling my office in a panic. The Service NB toll-free line is overloaded and they are also unable to get an appointment at the Tracadie office before mid-July, which is after the June 30 deadline. People are afraid of being fined because their documents are not up to date, through no fault of their own!” explains Thériault.
“It is unacceptable for the government to require citizens to have their documents up to date without even providing in-person service at the various service locations,” says Cathy Rogers, official Opposition critic for Service New Brunswick. “We must immediately extend the deadline until such time that all SNB offices are open with all regular services.”
The government has yet to set a date for the reopening of all SNB locations.