According to the latest reports, Former Newfoundland and Labrador premier Danny Williams are reportedly accusing the City of St. John’s of taking Christmas away from the residents of a subdivision that he had developed on the city’s outskirts.
As per Williams, it is just what he did last year; he had recently installed a ten-meter Christmas tree in the center of a traffic roundabout in the Galway subdivision, which was developed by his company DewCor.
But it seems that this year, the city took issue with the tree and is requiring that he takes out an insurance policy and has also asked him to keep it unlit due to the traffic concerns.
On Wednesday, a statement was emailed which stated that the city staff in the transportation engineering department has said that they are open to considering other locations for the tree in Galway that would not interfere with an intersection.
In the meanwhile, the neighboring city of Mount Pearl has offered to give the three a proper home with lights, and Williams has said that the tree will be delivered there within the next two days.
In an interview, Williams has stated that all’s well that ends well and that it’s going to the neighboring city of Mount Pearl, and quite honestly he said that if Galway could be part of Mount Pearl then that would be his choice.
In another statement that was emailed on Wednesday, Kevin Breen said that the St. John’s city manager has said that the tree went up last year without a permit and he had reiterated that the issue is with the proposed location of the tree.
Breen further added that there is a concern with its illumination in the middle of a busy roundabout due to driver distraction.
Furthermore, Williams has said that that has spent around $14000 last year to install a permanent power source for the tree in the roundabout.
He also said that the tree wasn’t exactly inconspicuous last year and that there was a tree lighting ceremony with hot chocolate and carolers, and that if the city had a problem about a permit or the traffic considerations then they had ample opportunity to make it known.
He added that the twinkling tree didn’t cause any traffic accidents and pointed to the Christmas lights the city puts up along some of its busiest streets each holiday season.
Going forward, Williams butted heads with the City St. John’s several times during the development of the Galway subdivision. When he was asked if he felt that the city’s pushback about the tree was personal or not, he said that he wasn’t sure what to think.
However, he also added that he doesn’t see any logical reason as to why they would do this. There’s no common sense, especially at this time of the year, it’s mean-spirited, he said.
Williams also said that if Mount Pearl plans a lighting ceremony for the displaced Galway Christmas tree, then he would be delighted to attend.