Nova Scotia writes off $12.7M in bad loans, uncollected fees
Hants County blueberry farm owed $3.7M when it went into receivership
Bum loans and uncollected fees and fines forced Nova Scotia to write off $12.7 million in bad debt in 2015-2016.
That's down from an annual average of $13.9 million in bad debt recorded over the past decade, the government said Tuesday.
"Provisions for these debts were made in previous fiscal years so the write-off process has no impact on departmental budgets or Nova Scotia's deficit or surplus position," the province said in a news release.
The biggest writeoff was a $3.7 million loss when Hants County blueberry operation Rainbow Farms went into receivership in 2013.
Rainbow Farms received a $4-million loan in 2010 from the Industrial Expansion Fund, a forerunner of the Jobs Funds — since cancelled by the Liberals.
$2.4 million in defaulted student loans
The Business Department also wrote off $349,000 under a small-business loan guarantee program operated by the Credit Union. However the department says that program has a 95 per cent success rate.
Labour and Advanced Education wrote off $2.4 million in defaulted student loans, down from $3 million last year.
"The vast majority of amounts listed under student loans have been in collections for at least four years," department spokesman Andrew Preeper told CBC News.
- $1,071,506 for universities, up from $900,000 last year.
- $284,440 for Nova Scotia Community College, down from $932,000 the previous year.
- $1,096,526 million for private colleges, down from $1.3 million last year.
The Department of Agriculture gave up on $1.3 million in unrecoverable fisheries and farm board loans.
Here is breakdown of the company names and amounts, released by the department:
NS Farm Loan Board
- John and Gretha Hutten, $341,578.34
- John and Linda Nauss, $89,870.47
- David Burgess, $85,895.34
- Stonehame Farm Limited $758,326.91
NS Fish Loan Board
- Tri County Fisheries Ltd., $2,374.36
Unpaid ambulance fees $2.4 million
Almost all of the $2.4 million written off by the Department of Health and Wellness was uncollected ambulance user fees.
A breakdown of the bad debt for the department:
- $2.3.million ambulance user fees.
- $92,527 in Life Flight air ambulance fees.
- $10,488 in education bursaries for incomplete programs.
- $957 in overpayments to physicians.
The Department of Justice also wrote off $2.3 million in uncollected fines.