Saint John seeks to save metal shredder
Saint John is holding a special meeting of council on Monday night to figure out how it can keep a scrap metal company in the city after it nixed a power line for a $30-million metal shredder project.
Saint John councillors voted last week against allowing NB Power to construct high-voltage power lines to the metal shredder after several homeowners in the area signed a petition against the project.
Herb Black, the president and chief executive officer of American Iron and Metal, said last week that Saint John is jeopardizing the jobs and millions of dollars in economic spinoffs that the project could bring.
Saint John Mayor Ivan Court said he's determined to find a solution at the special meeting to keep the facility in the city.
"We have a working port, people get upset when ships are in and so on. I get upset when they're not here," Court said.
"The bottom line is it's an economic engine, materials come from all over the province to go all over the world. We need a healthy port and we want to make sure this company will be here for 35 or 40 years or beyond."
American Iron and Metal needs the power lines to run an expanded facility at the Port of Saint John.
The company's 40-year lease is the first major lease the port has landed since the 1980s.
The company has estimated the metal shredder project could create 23 direct jobs and 20 spinoff jobs.
So far, three other communities have already invited Black to relocate his company's metal shredder.
The northern communities of Dalhousie and Belledune have indicated they'd be willing to have the jobs moved to their towns. Another community from outside of New Brunswick is apparently interested in the facility as well.
Dalhousie Mayor Clem Tremblay said American Iron and Metal already owns the property of the former Abitibi-Bowater mill that is next to the city's port.
He said the northern community could use the jobs.
Officials with NB Power and the Port Authority will also take part in Monday night's meeting.