Decision on Rollingdam name change coming soon
Official recommendation expected in August
Residents of Rollingdam are expecting a decision next month on whether the name of their rural Charlotte County community will be changed.
Last month, the New Brunswick government sent out a survey asking people whether Rollingdam should remain as one word, which was entered in the official registry in the 1970s — or be corrected with a space, as Rolling Dam, which many maintain is its historic name.
A recommendation is expected in August, however, the newspaper that covers the area has cemented its position on the naming debate.
"We said, 'You know what, the evidence is out there, we're going to support the majority of the community and go with Rolling Dam with a space,'" said Vern Faulkner, the editor of The St. Croix Courier.
"We're reaffirming a fact, if you will, that at one time it was Rolling Dam, with two words, and we see no harm in supporting the community in that regard, recognizing of course that not everyone is going to agree with that decision."
Cindy Ferriere, a member of the community committee endorsing the name change, said its members gathered evidence nearly two years ago that shows the name, Rolling Dam dates back to the 1830s.
Ferriere said she is ready to see which version the majority of people prefer.
"Considering we have been in this for 19 months now, another few weeks, well we can wait," she said.
Heritage Minister to make final decision on name
The results of the survey will not be unanimous, however. John Reist, a local resident who delivers mail in the area, said changing the name back to its original form would create even more confusion.
"With the computerized world, if you're ordering something or applying for something you have to put the name in properly," said Reist. "And when they try to pull it up on the database, if it's wrong it wouldn't show up."
Reist said a name change is unlikely to impact delivery, however, he sees no reason to bother with the minor change.
Once results of the citizens' survey are known in mid-August, it will be up to Tourism, Heritage and Culture Minister Trevor Holder to make the final decision.
The department previously estimated it would contact 100 to 150 households, and give residents about a month to respond with their desire for the spelling of the community’s name.
A statement issued by the department in June said "the majority vote will be the recommendation by the committee to the minister."