ns-yarmouthprotest

About 100 people protested Yarmouth's lack of ferry service outside Yarmouth Town Hall. ((Jean Laroche/CBC))

The cancelled ferry service between Yarmouth and Maine is once again the subject of protest in Southwest Nova Scotia.

On Sunday afternoon about 100 people gathered in front of Yarmouth Town Hall, demanding local officials step up their efforts to get the service running again.

"What has happened these last two years, doesn't need to be repeated here this afternoon, because we know today what the effect has been since the last of our ferry service,"  Randy Donaldson, who helped organize the rally, told the crowd.

"People are scared and many are suffering financially because of decisions being made that are outside of our control."

The high-speed CAT service to and from Maine was shut down last year after the provincial government cancelled its subsidy.

The ferry, which started its run in 1997, was able to carry 900 passengers and 240 vehicles. It ran every day in the summer and five days a week in the spring and fall shoulder season.

Yarmouth depended on the ferry service to deliver American tourists to the area.

In January, the 65-room Rodd Colony Harbour Inn in Yarmouth closed its doors after 40 years of business, citing the main reason for its closure to be the town's failure to secure a new ferry operator.

Yarmouth Mayor Phil Mooney also addressed the crowd.

He said he hopes the federal and provincial government will hear the towns cry for help and kick in funding for a new ferry service.

Some people at Sunday's protest were accusing officials in the community of being too secretive about any possible plans to get the ferry up and running.

Percy Paris, the province's minister of economic development, said Saturday that the provincial government would fund an economic development task force to fast-track business ideas that will bring jobs to the area.

So far there are no plans to establish a water link between Yarmouth and the U.S. this summer.