The premier is defending the provincial government's efforts to keep the coast guard's maritime search and rescue sub-centre in St. John's open.

Kathy Dunderdale says the province has pressed the issue on a weekly basis with the Prime Minister's Office and with members of Parliament.

She responded to a question about it from Liberal MHA Yvonne Jones in the house of assembly Wednesday.

"I don't make decisions federally, nor do I answer on behalf of the federal government, so I respectfully ask you to redirect your question to the federal government to see what their intentions are," she said.

The coast guard facility is slated to close April 25.

The Conservatives announced the closure of the sub-centre in St. John's shortly after winning the last federal election.

Work handled by the sub-centre — which communicates with military, coast guard and civilian ships in rescue responses — is set to take place in Nova Scotia and Ontario after the closure.

Protests and rallies against the federal government's decision to close the sub-centre took place in St. John's after the announcement was made.

Federal Fisheries Minister Keith Ashfield confirmed the government’s plans to close the sub-centre when he visited St. John’s last November.