Tiny community facing relocation

Steve Bartlett
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Two permanent residents to determine fate of Round Harbour

The people of Round Harbour will soon be asked if they want to resettle.

Municipal Affairs says it will "soon commence the process of a vote by permanent residents to determine if they wish to relocate."

That shouldn't take long - the village at the eastern tip of the Baie Verte Peninsula has a population of two.

So here's the potential challenge - according to Municipal Affairs, "Relocation must be supported by 90 per cent of the permanent residents of the community."

That means both residents must agree.

The Telegram was unable to reach either of the livyers, but the vote could be split, meaning the harbour could be 'round for a while yet.

Last December, in an interview with The Nor'wester - Transcontinental Media's newspaper covering the Baie Verte area - a man who calls the community home said relocation would be detrimental to his livelihood.

At the time, Lorne Fudge and his wife were fishing three crab licences from the community each year.

"I've invested a lot into fishing in Round Harbour," he said.

"Everything I have is there. It's not like we can change that all of a sudden and move somewhere else."

Fudge, who also had a home in nearby Harbour Round because his daughter was in school, said he had voiced his position to Municipal Affairs.

"I guess now all I can do is wait it out and see what happens," he said.

Fudge lost his stage and wharf in Round Harbour to Mother Nature the following month, but said in a subsequent story he had no plans of quitting.

Rudy Norman, now editor of The Nor'wester, wrote both stories involving Fudge.

He said it's his understanding Round Harbour was once a thriving fishing community that has seen its population dwindle.

"But most of the people you talk to who moved out of there still consider Round Harbour to be their home. ... I think a lot of it is an emotional connection to Round Harbour. It is where they lived. It is where they grew up."

Norman said the community doesn't have much in the way of infrastructure and is hard to reach.

"You might be able to get there in a truck or something in the summer, but in wintertime, it's nearly impossible to get there."

Municipal Affairs received a request in July 2010 to examine the possibility of relocation.

A spokesman stressed this week it will only initiate that process if asked to do so.

Once the request was made, the department did a review and determined the permanent population to be two.

Norman noted some of those who call Round Harbour home were excluded from the upcoming vote because legally they don't live there.

sbartlett@thetelegram.com Twitter: @SteveBartlett_


Geographic location: Round Harbour, Baie Verte

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Recent comments

  • Mike Moss
    January 29, 2012 - 10:05

    I've been gone from Newfoundland for thirteen years and this is just the kind of community that gives me a sence of history and pride. I'd say leave them alone and let these permanent residence live the way we all wish we could.

  • Mike Moss
    January 29, 2012 - 09:35

    I've been gone from Newfoundland for thirteen years and this is just the kind of community that gives me a sence of history and pride. I'd say leave them alone and let these permanent residence live the way we all wish we could.

    • brett
      January 29, 2012 - 22:44

      Mike - I say if you don't pay the taxes, you don't get a say.

  • wayne harvey
    January 29, 2012 - 08:02

    The only good thought that Joey , the pompous dictator, had was the resettlement dream. There are people scattered all over NL. who should be resettled. This is not 500 years ago with all the misery and torment that that era perpetuated. This is 500 years later with all the misery and torment that is perpetuated. But, then Jed Clampett did say , after his cousin, Pearl, extolled the many reasons why the family should relocate----no running water,bathroom fifty feet from the house, nearest neighbor fifty miles away, no readily accessible medical care----"your right, a man would be a fool to leave all this"

  • brett
    January 28, 2012 - 22:27

    Cut off the funding provincially. Rather allocate provincial funding to the "town"/"hamlet"/"cul-de-sac" based only on the tax returns of the residents. In fact I suggest that any town with a population below 50 for the next 2 years have the same thing done to it, then up it to 100people, then 250 over a 5 year period.

  • Gerry C.
    January 28, 2012 - 19:37

    Ah, yes 'relocate them anyway'...thank gawd we live in a (supposedly) democratic society & the PEOPLe have a choice where they want to live; comments like 'relocate them anyway' & 'should be resettled' are the out-of-date antiquated comments of the past...and who cares what the population of Brampton, Mississauga, Moscow or Timbucto compared to Newfoundland & Labrador is anyway?? Irrelevant...

  • calvin
    January 28, 2012 - 18:53

    I agree a lot of smaller communities that are no longer viable should be relocated. But however, the system does not make it a very viable option for the people. They own their own homes, can cut their own wood for heat and can to a large degree live off the land. Why would a 58 year old couple give up that for a $150,000 mortgage? I feel that if the relocation allowance were only $250,000, these people could see it as a satisfactory compensation. Just compare that to the millions of dollars the Government would have to spend to support the community over many years! A generous relocation expense would be of benefit to both. When the moved Davis Inlet in Labrador for the third time, yes for the third time, it cost the federal government $175,000,000. That amounted to an expenditure of over a million dollars per household and we are still paying for everything except housekeeping. Now does $250,000 sound too much per family in Newfoundland and Labrador?

    • BR
      January 29, 2012 - 14:03

      You want to take 250,000 of taxpayers's money to move people that live in a place where they chose to live??? Why do people think govt has to do everything? Govt money is taxpayer's money. I understand if govt is paying for a ferry and it is cheaper to relocate and cancel the ferry. If the govt has no cost with Round Harbour, why relocate?

    • BR
      January 29, 2012 - 16:21

      You want to spend 250,000 of taxpayers's money to move them from a place where they chose to live??? I don't think so. If they want to stay, leave them there. If they want to move, it's their decision. Govt doesn't have to pay for everything.

  • Marty
    January 28, 2012 - 18:34

    If these two individuals refuse to leave then govt. should ensure no further funding is expended. I can appreciate that they don't want to leave the community they spent their lives in, but realistically govt can't justify expending funds to keep the community going for two people. If they are willing to stay without any govt assistance, that's fine.

  • Save Money
    January 28, 2012 - 17:54

    Yes, relocate them anyway. The province spending money on infrastructure and snow clearing for just two people is rediclous.

  • Gerry
    January 28, 2012 - 17:23

    Round Harbour is not the only one which should be resettled. All those little towns which don't have a large tax base to support its self need to be considered. The whole population of NL is less than the city of Brampton or Mississauga.

  • Percy Dean Anthony
    January 28, 2012 - 11:59

    The picture of Round Harbour is so Beautiful.....

  • harold
    January 28, 2012 - 11:15

    Round Harbour may only have a population of two but when they leave and resettle, another community in Newfoundland is lost. i was part of the smallwood resettlement program in the 60's. "i left without leaving and never arrived"

  • BR
    January 28, 2012 - 09:44

    Why does govt have to relocate them? Fudge has another home he can use for the winter and if the other resident wants to stay, let them stay. It's their decision to stay with the inconvenience. Govt doesn't have to relocate everybody.

  • Ranter
    January 28, 2012 - 07:49

    Seems this province is more third world and 60 years behind....resettlement still going on!