Liberal leader Stephen McNeil was on hand to personally welcome newly nominated Cumberland North Liberal candidate Brent Noiles into the fold in Amherst on Saturday. Christopher Gooding photo The Amherst Daily News
AMHERST The budget currently before the Nova Scotia government to consider will see more paving projects take place in New Brunswick unless Rodney MacDonalds Progressive Conservatives start listening to the Liberals, leader Stephen McNeil says.
A four-cent cut in provincial gas tax, McNeil says, is not only good for Nova Scotians but strengthens the local economy here in Amherst and Cumberland North.
I dont believe if gas is four cents cheaper youre all going to fill up, McNeil said at the nomination meeting for Cumberland North Liberal candidate Brent Noiles. But I do believe some of you are going to go over the border and help New Brunswick roads by buying your gas there.
The cost and mechanics of gasoline were key to McNeils address to the Cumberland North Liberal Association on Saturday at the Tantramar Theatre where Brent Noiles secured the position of Liberal candidate for the riding. With the Rodney MacDonald Progressive Conservative governments budget under review, McNeil and the provinces Liberals could create an election if they vote down the budget. If the tides turned and the third party status Liberals rose to the top, McNeil says scrapping the regulated gas formula would be his first act as premier.
Annually we have 52 chances and gas stations are still closing. That money should stay here and give us greater economic growth.
MacNeil says hell continue to debate the regulated gas issue with the premier and leader of the opposition, NDP Darrell Dexter in the House, indicating that is where he feels the debate is best held until an election is called.
If McNeil and the Liberals will move the province into an election, however, is speculative. Even the leader admits hes unsure what course the party will take.
Ill be very upfront with you, I wasnt thrilled with the budget I sawbut there were things in the budget we did want to see, McNeil said. Its not one Ill make in haste and it wont be one Ill make based on where we are but whats best for Nova Scotia.
Nonetheless, McNeil is telling campaign managers and teams to have their signs ready now and prepare to spring into action.
Both McNeil and NDP Dexter have said theyll take several weeks before casting their final judgment on the budget.