‘We got burned, hosed’: Yarmouth resident on new ferry

A Yarmouth resident says he’s “angry” about the deal the government signed with Bay Ferries to operate the Yarmouth ferry.

“We got burned, hosed,” Jim Jeffery said.

Bay Ferries and the Americans who negotiated leasing the navy’s ferry to the service “treated us as though we were stupid and desperate and I don’t think we should be either,” Jeffery said Tuesday.

The controversial CAT ferry will set sail to Portland, Maine for its third season Wednesday with a new boat and operator. Bay Ferries is running the service which has faced criticism from a variety of angles since the deal was announced in March.

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Including start-up costs, the ferry is expected to cost taxpayers $23.3 million for the first year.

Jeffery cited the ban of commercial trucks on the ferry and the all American crew as reasons for being upset with the deal.

He says the government also showed it was “desperate” by accepting the deal.

“It’s a done deal”

Yarmouth Mayor Pam Mood defended the ferry and the deal the provincial Liberals signed with Bay Ferries, saying its value for Nova Scotia is “off the charts,” and ferries across Nova Scotia operate with a subsidy.

READ MORE: Yarmouth ferry lease hiccup could result in loss of passenger numbers, revenue

Mood called on the ferry’s detractors to rally behind the ferry because its a “done deal” and has a better chance of success if it’s supported across Nova Scotia. Its hoped the ferry will bring more American tourists to Nova Scotia as part of the government’s goal to double its tourism revenue by 2024.

“I also say… how sad that we can’t get on board and support this,” Mood said.

The Yarmouth ferry is a “game changer” for the economy in Yarmouth she said.

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