Talks ongoing with Nova Scotia mill over millions in outstanding loans: premier

Northern Pulp Mill

Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil says his government is in talks with representatives of the mothballed Northern Pulp mill regarding the repayment of millions of dollars in outstanding provincial loans.

McNeil's spokesman confirmed Thursday the outstanding total is roughly $85-million, a figure also contained in an access-to-information request reported by the Halifax Chronicle Herald last fall.

The loans, made by previous governments, include two to the mill and one to an affiliated company.

McNeil said today the discussions concern things such as a repayment schedule and applicable interest.

He says there are currently no talks around the province's potential liability related to the closure of the mill's Boat Harbour effluent treatment facility, which occurred roughly 10 years ahead of schedule.

McNeil says he believes the government's liability has been reduced now that the mill is not moving ahead with a new treatment facility.