Liberals to reopen Maritime Rescue Sub-centre in St. John's

New federal Fisheries Minister Hunter Tootoo and the Liberal government will reopen the Maritime Rescue Sub-centre in St. John’s.

Fisheries Minister Hunter Tootoo signs mandate from Trudeau

Hunter Tootoo signed a new mandate for Fisheries and Oceans nine days after being sworn in as the department' new minister. (CBC)

New federal Fisheries Minister Hunter Tootoo and the Liberal government will reopen the Maritime Rescue Sub-centre in St. John's.

The Nunavut MP signed the mandate given to him by new Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in a letter nine days after he was sworn in as the minister of Fisheries and Oceans Canada.

The sub-centre was closed in 2012 despite loud outcry from advocates and fishermen. Provincial and municipal politicians — such as St. John's Mayor Dennis O'Keefe —have lobbied since to have it reopened.

The mandate says, as minister, Tootoo's "overarching goal will be to protect our three oceans, coasts, waterways and fisheries and ensure that they remain healthy for future generations."

It contains a long list of items, including the promise to "restore funding to support federal ocean science and monitoring programs, to protect the health of fish stocks, to monitor contaminants and pollution in the oceans, and to support responsible and sustainable aquaculture industries on Canada's coasts."

The mandate also says Tootoo will "use scientific evidence and the precautionary principle, and take into account climate change, when making decisions affecting fish stocks and ecosystem management."

The Kitsilano Coast Guard Base in Vancouver will be reopened as well.

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