Road repairs come first
PC MLA Brad Trivers says provincial road crews should be working on roads, not the Cavendish Beach Music Festival
Why were provincial road crews helping with the setup of the Cavendish Beach Music Festival while roads in the area remain full of potholes?
That’s the question Progressive Conservative MLA Brad Trivers is asking after hearing concerns from some local residents and even some road crew employees about work being done by road crews on the concert site.
“People have patience throughout May and into June, but we’re here approaching the second week of July and the roads are still not fixed,” Trivers said.
“I don’t know if we just don’t have enough road staff or if it’s a bad year for the roads, but to me, the priority of the road crews should be fixing the roads and if they need to hire somebody to help set up an event, then go and let the company hire people to do it.”
The province did confirm Transportation, Infrastructure and Energy (TIE) employees provided assistance to the Cavendish Beach Music Festival this week.
“We are assisting with police to direct traffic and ensure safety during a high-volume event and to ensure Islanders and visitors onsite have a safe and fun experience. We assist at large events that require traffic control just as we did recently with 20th anniversary Bridgefest,” a spokesman for the department said in an email statement to The Guardian.
He noted the event attracts a large number of tourists and residents and generates “a lot of economic activity and excitement.”
“Our department has provided some members of staff to assist with pedestrian safety and traffic control in and around the public right of way. This is similar to support that TIE provides to other largescale public gatherings, including the Grand Fondo bike event, the Rock the Boat Festival, Bridgefest and others.”
But Trivers says he has heard directly from some road crew employees, who say they are not only doing work on the public roadways, but also inside the privately owned concert site.
This work reportedly includes setting up picnic tables, setting up the VIP area, putting up banners along the fences inside the venue and even coming back when it’s all over to clean up garbage from the crowds, Trivers said.
He believes the privately run, for-profit event should be hiring its own staff to do this work rather than diverting provincial road workers from their work repairing Island roadways.
“The safety issues on these roads are just as important as the safety issues are at the Cavendish Beach Music Festival,” Trivers said.
“I do know the value that this event brings to the area, but this is about making sure the core services for Islanders are looked after… let’s put the road crews to work on the roads.”
John King, an American country music singer and songwriter, performed at the tailgate party Thursday as part of the Cavendish Beach Music Festival.