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PM vows to twin highway

OTTAWA, Ont. -- The Prime Minister has given his personal promise to complete the twinning of the Trans-Canada High...


OTTAWA, Ont. — The Prime Minister has given his personal promise to complete the twinning of the Trans-Canada Highway through New Brunswick.

Liberal MP Andy Savoy (Tobique-Mactaquac) says the Prime Minister’s Office had called him after the federal budget Monday afternoon to confirm federal funding has been approved for the final stretch of untwinned highway through the province.

“The Prime Minister has taken a real interest in this,” Savoy says. “He wants to be around to negotiate the deal.

“I’m a very happy camper,” Savoy adds in admitting the approval had left him “shocked and a little overwhelmed.”

Details of the funding and its source remain sketchy, but Savoy says he believes it will amount to about $200 million and come from the new $2-billion mega-infrastructure program announced by federal Finance Minister Paul Martin.

“We’re not talking about specific project,” says Transport Minister David Collenette in refusing to confirm the funding.

Several senior cabinet ministers and New Brunswick Liberal MPs confirmed they’d also been told the money is there.

Federal funding would be contingent upon the province shouldering its half of the estimated $420-million price tag, but Premier Bernard Lord has already committed his government to completing the project within eight years.


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