Deal to buy ship­yard could be done within next month, Marystown mayor says

Town look­ing to lease fa­cil­ity to com­pany plan­ning to op­er­ate aqua­cul­ture ser­vice hub

The Southern Gazette - - Front Page - BY PAUL HERRIDGE paul.herridge@south­erngazette.ca

The Marystown Town Coun­cil is inch­ing to­wards fi­nal­iz­ing an agree­ment to buy the Marystown Ship­yard from Peter Kiewit, Mayor Sam Sy­nard told The South­ern Gazette Wed­nes­day, Sept. 19.

“It’s a slow process to buy an in­dus­trial foot­print like that, of course, and we’re re­ally hop­ing within the next month to be able to close the deal on the ship­yard,” Sy­nard said.

A coun­cil del­e­ga­tion met with of­fi­cials from the pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ment in St. John’s on Sept. 11 to dis­cuss the mat­ter. Sy­nard, who in­di­cated more meet­ings are forth­com­ing, said two main top­ics were ad­dressed.

“We need min­is­te­rial ap­proval (from the Depart­ment of Mu­nic­i­pal Af­fairs and En­vi­ron­ment) to pur­chase as­sets, so we’ve got that process started,” he said.

“We need in­dem­ni­fi­ca­tion from the prov­ince about the en­vi­ron­men­tal is­sues at the ship­yard, and that process has started, as well. And those are the two big things. We need the en­vi­ron­men­tal in­dem­ni­fi­ca­tion. That’s au­to­matic. No­body is go­ing to buy the ship­yard with­out that be­ing in place.”

The town has been in ne­go­ti­a­tions with Peter Kiewit to buy the ship­yard as­sets and land for ap­prox­i­mately four months.

Sy­nard told The South­ern Gazette on Aug. 9 a tem­plate agree­ment is in place.

Con­tin­gent on the town pur­chas­ing the ship­yard, coun­cil has also been in talks with Mar­base Marystown Inc. to lease the prop­erty long-term. The com­pany is look­ing to turn the fa­cil­ity into a ser­vice hub for the aqua­cul­ture in­dus­try.

The de­vel­op­ment would largely de­pend on whether Grieg NL re­ceived en­vi­ron­men­tal ap­proval from the pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ment to move for­ward with its Pla­cen­tia Bay aqua­cul­ture project, Sy­nard told The South­ern Gazette in Au­gust.

The prov­ince re­leased the project from fur­ther en­vi­ron­men­tal as­sess­ment, sub­ject to a num­ber of con­di­tions, on Sept. 7.

We need min­is­te­rial ap­proval (from the Depart­ment of Mu­nic­i­pal Af­fairs and En­vi­ron­ment) to pur­chase as­sets, so we’ve got that process started.

— Mayor Sam Sy­nard

SOUTH­ERN GAZETTE FILE PHOTO

Marystown Mayor Sam Sy­nard says a deal for the town to pur­chase the lo­cal ship­yard could be fi­nal­ized within the next month.

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