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Letter: Minister, practise what you’re preaching

I write regarding Minister Christopher Mitchelmore’s letter to the editor published Monday, May 15, “ We’re working to help diversify the economy” ( — his response to the letter “Make N.L. great again” in The Telegram March 13.

I found the title of his letter amusing, and after reading its content, I was left in a state of bewilderment. It was the second paragraph that got to me. I quote: “Small businesses are an important part of our economy, creating jobs and opportunities to strengthen communities. As a government, we play a critical role in stimulating the environment for business development, retention and growth…”

The minister of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation should tell that to the owner of Auk Island Winery in Twillingate and the other eight licensed iceberg harvesters in Newfoundland and Labrador who were initially hit with a whopping 2,000 per cent increase in fees, plus $1,200 each, retroactively to budget 2016. Apparently, the government didn’t communicate this too well at budget time; the harvesters only found out on receiving their 2017 bills in the mail.

Yes, Mr. Mitchelmore, as you stated in your last paragraph, “It is always important to remember that together we will achieve a strong, diversified province with a high standard of living…”

If only we could get you and your colleagues to buy into that.


William Butt
Conception Bay South


Editor’s note: In fairness to Minister Christopher Mitchelmore, he did not write the headline on his letter — The Telegram did.

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