POLITICS

Nova Scotia spends another $2 million of $13 million promised for ferry

04/01/2015 03:30 EDT | Updated 06/01/2015 05:59 EDT
HALIFAX - The Nova Scotia government has spent another $2 million of the $13 million promised this year to assist the operators of the ferry between Yarmouth and Portland, Me.

Economic Development Minister Michel Samson says with the latest payment, Nova Star Cruises has received $4 million of the amount promised for the upcoming sailing season, which is scheduled to begin June 1.

Samson says he also received a verbal agreement from the owners of the vessel, S.T. Marine, for $3 million to be paid back to the Nova Scotia government as part of the original contract that relaunched the ferry run last year.

He says details of the payment are currently being finalized by lawyers and will be released once a formal deal is struck.

Nova Star Cruises says the latest payment will help it cover the costs of a number of expenses including recertification, vessel maintenance and repair, and sales and marketing.

The province spent $28.5 million to subsidize the inaugural season of the ferry, which included a $21-million loan that was supposed to last seven years but was spent in the first two months of its operation.