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Local Aboriginal Company Awarded Contract

by NationTalk on September 22, 2009391 Views

Sydney Tar Ponds Agency
September 22, 2009 10:38 AM

UPDATE: To the item originally transmitted at about 9:45 a.m. today, Sept. 22, to add the location of the companies to the second paragraph.A $3.1-million contract to operate and maintain a material processing facility for the Sydney Tar Ponds and Coke Ovens cleanup has been awarded to a local aboriginal company.

Mikjikj Enterprises Ltd. and Harbour Tech Services Inc. Joint Venture has been awarded the multi-year contract as part of the Aboriginal Set-aside Procurement Strategy signed in 2008 by the government of Canada, province of Nova Scotia, and Membertou, on behalf of five First Nations communities of Cape Breton. Mikjikj Enterprises is in Eskasoni and Harbour Tech Services is in Sydney.

The facility will begin operations in October and run until the cleanup is complete. The contract includes decommissioning the building.

Set-aside contracts provide companies with majority aboriginal ownership and control an opportunity to benefit from the cleanup work. As well, it provides aboriginal workers with the hands-on training needed to compete for construction projects outside the cleanup.

“First Nations people play a very important role in the cleanup of the Sydney tar ponds and coke ovens,” said Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence. “The successful clean up of this site goes hand in hand with our local companies gaining valuable skills and experience, and these companies are demonstrating a great ability to take on this project.”

Aboriginal companies bidding on set-aside contracts must have at least 51 per cent aboriginal ownership and control; if there are more than five full-time employees, one-third must be aboriginal.

“The cooling-pond project in 2007 was the first aboriginal set-aside in Nova Scotia and was a great accomplishment for the overall cleanup,” said Bill Estabrooks, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal. “We are confident that this set-aside contract will continue to further the inclusion and consultation of local aboriginal companies on the project.”

Local company Joneljim Construction began building the $8.7-million material processing facility in 2008. All construction vehicles entering or leaving the site will pass through the building. Also, material and debris from remediation will be graded, sorted, and washed in the facility.

In January 2007, the government of Canada and province of Nova Scotia committed $400 million to ensure the Tar Ponds and Coke Ovens cleanup is completed by 2014.

-30-

Media Contacts:

Tanya Collier MacDonald
Sydney Tar Ponds Agency
902-567-2344
Cell: 902-578-1904
E-mail: Tanya[at]tarpondscleanup.ca

Stephanie McLean
Sydney Tar Ponds Agency
902-567-7988
Cell: 902-574-0442
E-mail: Stephanie[at]tarpondscleanup.ca

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