Wendy Lill is a Canadian playwright and radio dramatist who served as an NDP Member of Parliament from 1997 to 2004. Her stage plays have been performed extensively in theatres across Canada as well as internationally in such countries as Scotland and Germany. Many of the plays explore the divide between the powerful and the oppressed, for example, the racism and abuse suffered by Canada's indigenous peoples, the plight of the handicapped, child sexual abuse and the struggle for women's rights. Four of her plays were nominated for Governor General's Awards. Sisters, which dramatizes the human devastation caused by a convent-run, native residential school, received the Labatt's Canadian Play Award at the Newfoundland and Labrador Drama Festival. Lill's adaptation of Sisters for television earned her a Gemini Award in 1992. Before writing her first produced play, On the Line, based on a strike by female garment workers in Manitoba, Lill worked as a journalist, documentary-maker and dramatist for CBC Radio in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
Among other things, she covered a paper mill strike in Kenora and produced documentaries for Our Native Land, a national, weekly program about Canada's indigenous peoples. Her documentary Who is George Forest? and her radio drama Shorthanded won ACTRA Awards in 1981. Her screenplay Ikwe, about Métis women, was part of a National Film Board series which received a Golden Sheaf Award at the Yorkton Film Festival in 1986. During her seven years as a Member of Parliament, Lill served as her party's culture and communications critic as well as its advocate for human rights and youth, people living with disabilities, she was a member of the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage where she contributed to the recommendations that resulted from three major studies: the federal government's role in supporting arts and culture. Wendy Lill was born in Vancouver, British Columbia, the daughter of Edwin Henry Lill and Margaret Galbraith Gordon, her family moved to Ontario when she was five. She received a BA in Political Science from York University in 1971.
After graduation, she worked as a cocktail waitress and began writing poetry. Anxious to get away from Toronto, Lill moved north to Kenora, Ontario in 1977 where she worked as a mental health consultant. "That was a silly job for me because I had no experience and I wasn't that type of person," Lill told an interviewer later. "But I did it for six months trying to ascertain whether a Canadian Mental Health Association would be useful in Northern Ontario. Well, that's sort of like saying,'Would an aspirin be useful in Bangladesh?'" Lill concluded there were 44 associations in Kenora, none of them effective in dealing with the socio-economic problems that resulted in alcoholism and violence. After quitting her mental health job, Lill began working for a native newspaper, flying to remote reserves where she "spent a lot of time sleeping on floors in nursing stations." Her experiences in northwestern Ontario changed her life. "I began to see the whole level of community relationships between natives and whites in the north, the historical abuse of power, the racism," she told a journalist in 1998.
"It was the first time I had seen that, I was shocked." At age 26, Lill began writing stories based on her experiences—stories that would form the basis for her one-woman play, The Occupation of Heather Rose. Lill worked as a journalist for CBC Radio in Winnipeg before moving to the Manitoba capital in 1979 where she produced radio documentaries for Our Native Land, a national, CBC Radio program about Canada's indigenous peoples. One of her documentaries, Who is George Forest? won an ACTRA Award in 1981. Her radio drama, Shorthanded won an ACTRA that same year. In 1982, her first play, On the Line was staged in Winnipeg, it was based on a strike by immigrant women working in the garment industry and has been variously described as one-sided and propagandistic. According to one account, Lill's businessman father suggested that in successful drama the villains have to be real, a piece of advice that she took to heart. Lill met CBC producer, Richard Starr in Winnipeg and they married in 1982, moving east to Nova Scotia and New Brunswick before settling in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia with their sons Samuel and Joseph.
Samuel has Down's syndrome and both Lill and Starr are well known for their advocacy on behalf of people living with disabilities. Lill's first formal political involvement came during the 1970s when she joined the NDP's left-wing Waffle movement. In years, she continued to work on behalf of the NDP doing everything from door-to-door canvassing to organizing fundraising events for the party. Alexa McDonough, the party's federal leader asked Lill to run in the 1997 federal election. At the time, Lill had finished writing Corker, a play that shows how government spending cuts affect vulnerable people. "It's about the same theme I always write about," Lill told a local journalist, "the big divide between the elite and the street—and how if you don't like what's going on, you gotta change the world. I guess I decided it was time to see if I believed my own words."Lill ran in Dartmouth, a riding that contains everything from an industrial harbourfront and urban downtown to burgeoning suburban neighbourhoods and rural villages such as Cherrybrook and the Prestons that make up the country's oldest African-Canadian community.
As she knocked on doors, Lill found voters receptive. "The voters talk to me about the same things the NDP have made issues
House of Commons of Canada
The House of Commons of Canada is a component of the Parliament of Canada, along with the Sovereign and the Senate. The House of Commons meets in a temporary Commons chamber in the West Block of the parliament buildings on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, while the Centre Block, which houses the traditional Commons chamber, undergoes a ten-year renovation; the House of Commons is a democratically elected body whose members are known as Members of Parliament. There were 308 members in the last parliament, but that number has risen to 338 following the election on Monday October 19, 2015. Members are elected by simple plurality in each of the country's electoral districts, which are colloquially known as ridings. MPs may hold office until Parliament is dissolved and serve for constitutionally limited terms of up to five years after an election. However, terms have ended before their expiry and the sitting government has dissolved parliament within four years of an election according to a long-standing convention.
In any case, an Act of Parliament now limits each term to four years. Seats in the House of Commons are distributed in proportion to the population of each province and territory. However, some ridings are more populous than others, the Canadian constitution contains some special provisions regarding provincial representation; as a result, there is some regional malapportionment relative to population. The House of Commons was established in 1867, when the British North America Act—now called the Constitution Act, 1867—created the Dominion of Canada, was modelled on the British House of Commons; the lower of the two houses making up the parliament, the House of Commons in practice holds far more power than the upper house, the Senate. Although the approval of both Houses is necessary for legislation, the Senate rarely rejects bills passed by the commons. Moreover, the Cabinet is responsible to the House of Commons; the prime minister stays in office only as long as they retain the support, or "confidence", of the lower house.
The term derives from the Anglo-Norman word communes, referring to the geographic and collective "communities" of their parliamentary representatives and not the third estate, the commonality. This distinction is made clear in the official French name of the body, Chambre des communes. Canada and the United Kingdom remain the only countries to use the name "House of Commons" for a lower house of parliament; the House of Commons came into existence in 1867, when the British Parliament passed the British North America Act, uniting the Province of Canada, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick into a single federation called the Dominion of Canada. The new Parliament of Canada consisted of the Senate and the House of Commons; the Parliament of Canada was based on the Westminster model. Unlike the UK Parliament, the powers of the Parliament of Canada were limited in that other powers were assigned to the provincial legislatures; the Parliament of Canada remained subordinate to the British Parliament, the supreme legislative authority for the entire British Empire.
Greater autonomy was granted by the Statute of Westminster 1931, after which new acts of the British Parliament did not apply to Canada, with some exceptions. These exceptions were removed by the Canada Act 1982. From 1867, the Commons met in the chamber used by the Legislative Assembly of Canada until the building was destroyed by fire in 1916, it relocated to the amphitheatre of the Victoria Memorial Museum—what is today the Canadian Museum of Nature, where it met until 1922. Until the end of 2018, the Commons sat in Centre Block chamber. Starting with the final sitting before the 2019 federal election, the Commons sits in a temporary chamber in the West Block until at least 2028, while renovations are undertaken in the Centre Block of Parliament; the House of Commons comprises 338 members. The constitution specifies a basic minimum of 295 electoral districts, but additional seats are allocated according to various clauses. Seats are distributed among the provinces in proportion to population, as determined by each decennial census, subject to the following exceptions made by the constitution.
Firstly, the "senatorial clause" guarantees that each province will have at least as many MPs as Senators. Secondly, the "grandfather clause" guarantees each province has at least as many Members of Parliament now as it had in 1985; as a result of these clauses, smaller provinces and provinces that have experienced a relative decline in population have become over-represented in the House. Ontario, British Columbia, Alberta are under-represented in proportion to their populations, while the other seven provinces are over-represented. Boundary commissions, appointed by the federal government for each province, have the task of drawing the boundaries of the electoral districts in each province. Territorial representation is independent of population; the calculation for the provinces is done with a base of 279 seats. The total population of the provinces is divided by 279 to equal the electoral quotient; the population of the province is divided by the electoral q
2004 Canadian federal election
The 2004 Canadian federal election, was held on June 28, 2004, to elect members of the House of Commons of Canada of the 38th Parliament of Canada. The Liberal government of Prime Minister Paul Martin lost its majority, but was able to form a minority government after the elections; the main opposition party, the newly amalgamated Conservative Party of Canada, improved its position but with a showing below its expectations. On May 23, 2004, Governor General Adrienne Clarkson, on the advice of Martin, ordered the dissolution of the House of Commons. Following a 36-day campaign, voters elected 308 Members of the House of Commons. All three major national parties had changed their leaders since the 2000 election. Earlier the election was expected to be a easy romp for Martin to a fourth consecutive Liberal majority government, but early in 2004 Liberal popularity fell due to the sponsorship scandal. Polls started to indicate the possibility of a minority government for the Liberals, or a minority Conservative government, fuelling speculation of coalitions with the other parties.
In the end, the Liberals fared better than the final opinion polls had led them to fear, but well short of a majority. On election day, polling times were arranged to allow results from most provinces to be announced more or less with the exception of Atlantic Canada, whose results were known before the close of polling in other provinces due to the British Columbia Supreme Court's decision in R v Bryan. In 2004, a federal party required 155 of the 308 seats to hold a majority in Canada; the Liberals came short of this number, winning 135. Until close ridings were decided on the west coast, it appeared as though the Liberals' seat total, if combined with that of the left-wing New Democratic Party, would be sufficient to hold a majority in the House of Commons. In the end, the Conservatives won Vancouver Island North, West Vancouver-Sunshine Coast, New Westminster-Coquitlam, after trailing in all three ridings, as sub-totals were announced through the evening; as a result, the combined seat count of the Liberals and the NDP was 154, while the other 154 seats belonged to the Conservatives and one independent Chuck Cadman.
Rather than forming a coalition with the NDP, the Liberal party led a minority government, obtaining majorities for its legislation on an ad hoc basis. As the showdown on Bill C-48, a matter of confidence, loomed in the spring of 2005, the Liberals and NDP, who wanted to continue the Parliament, found themselves matched against the Conservatives and the Bloc, who were registering no confidence; the bill passed with the Speaker casting the decisive tie-breaking vote. Voter turnout nationwide was 60.9%, the lowest in Canadian history at that time, with 13,683,570 out of 22,466,621 registered voters casting their ballots. The voter turnout fell by more than 3pp from the 2000 federal election. Notes: "% change" refers to change from previous election * Party did not nominate candidates in the previous election. In the case of the CHP, which did have 46 candidates in the previous election, the party did not have official status and is not compared. 1 Conservative Party results are compared to the combined totals of the Canadian Alliance and the Progressive Conservative Party in the 2000 election.
Source: Elections Canada Western Arctic, NT: Ethel Blondin-Andrew def. Dennis Bevington by 53 votes QC: Liza Frulla def. Thierry St-Cyr by 72 votes Simcoe—Grey, ON: Helena Guergis def. Paul Bonwick by 100 votes New Westminster—Coquitlam, BC: Paul Forseth def. Steve McClurg by 113 votes Regina—Lumsden—Lake Centre, SK: Tom Lukiwski def. Gary Anderson by 122 votes SK: Dave Batters def. Dick Proctor by 124 votes Edmonton—Beaumont, AB: David Kilgour def. Tim Uppal by 134 votes ON: Gary Goodyear def. Janko Peric by 224 votes Kildonan—St. Paul, MB: Joy Smith def. Terry Duguid by 278 votes Northumberland—Quinte West, ON: Paul Macklin def. Doug Galt by 313 votes Number of parties: 12 First appearance: Conservative Party of Canada, Progressive Canadian Party Reappearance after hiatus: Christian Heritage Party of Canada, Libertarian Party of Canada Until the sponsorship scandal, most pundits were predicting that new Prime Minister Paul Martin would lead the Liberal Party of Canada to a fourth majority government setting a record for number of seats won.
However, polls released after the scandal broke showed Liberal support down as much as 10% nationwide, with greater declines in its heartland of Quebec and Ontario. Although there was some recovery in Ontario and Atlantic Canada, Liberal hopes of making unprecedented gains in the west faded; the unpopularity of some provincial Liberal parties may have had an effect on federal Liberal fortunes. In Ontario, for instance, the provincial Liberal government introduced an unpopular budget the week of the expected election call, their federal counterparts fell into a statistical dead heat with the Conservatives in polls there; the Liberals were harmed by high-profile party infighting, plaguing the party since Martin's earlier ejection from Cabinet by now-former Prime Minister Jean Chrétien. The campaign was criticized by Liberal candidates, one incumbent Liberal comparing it to the Keystone Kops. In the final months of 2003, the Progressive Conservatives and the Canadian Alliance were running a distant third and fourth in public opinion polls.
Many pundits predicted that the combination of the popular and fiscally conservative Martin, along with co
Halifax Transit is a Canadian public transport service operating buses and ferries in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Founded as Metro Transit in March 1982, Halifax Transit provides service in the urban service and adjacent area of the regional municipality utilizing 2 ferry routes, 57 conventional bus routes, two limited stop express routes, three limited stop rural express routes. Halifax Transit operates Accessabus, a door-to-door paratransit service for seniors and the disabled. In 2nd quarter 2017 conventional bus ridership was 3.99 million, ferry ridership 644,600, Accessabus ridership was 38,800. According to the 2011 census, Halifax has the 7th highest proportion of workers taking transit to work in a city in Canada. Halifax was among first cities in Canada to be served by an integrated public transportation system, pre-dated only by Toronto and Quebec City; the municipality's first transit service came with establishment of the Dartmouth ferry service, first chartered in 1752. In 1816 the sail powered ferry was replaced by a horse powered boat, in 1830 with a steam ferry.
While private omnibus services are known to have begun in the city at least as early as 1854, the roots of Halifax Transit date back to June 11, 1866. The Halifax City Railroad Company began operations with five horse-drawn trams on rails that stretched from the corner of Barrington Street and Inglis Street in the south end to the city’s first railway station near the corner of Duffus Street and Campbell Road in the north end. Notwithstanding a ten-year hiatus, horse-drawn street railway services continued in Halifax until April 1896 when the system, now operated by the Halifax Electric Tramway Company, completed the conversion to electric-powered operation; the street railway served Halifax until March 1949, when the war-worn trams were replaced by "trackless" electric trolley coaches. The bright yellow trolleys, operated by utility Nova Scotia Light and Power, plied city streets until 1963, when they were supplemented by diesel buses for the first time; the system became all-diesel on January 1, 1970, the same day the City of Halifax took over the operation.
Some of Halifax's T-44 trolleybuses were sold to the Toronto Transit Commission for parts for their Western Flyer E-700A. Metro Transit, a single transit agency serving all of the greater metropolitan area of Halifax-Dartmouth, began operations in March 1981; the system was created by the Metropolitan Authority, a common-services agency representing the former cities of Halifax and Dartmouth as well as suburban Halifax County, to consolidate the transit operations of the Halifax Transit Corporation in Halifax and Dartmouth Transit. Metro Transit expanded in 1994 with the absorption of the Dartmouth ferry services operated by the city of Dartmouth. Ownership of the transit service was transferred to the newly created Halifax Regional Municipality at amalgamation in 1996. Since that time the service has been operated directly by the municipal government and since October 2010 Transit has reported though the Transportation Standing Committee of Halifax Regional Council; the municipality announced on July 15, 2014 that it was changing the services name to Halifax Transit in reflection of the city's new brand.
In January 2014, Halifax regional council approved a study to look at a major re-design of the city's transit system. The "Moving Forward Together Plan" was adopted in principal by Halifax Regional Council in April 2016. Proposed amendments to the plan were defeated in November 2016, with the exception of a change to the route of the Porters Lake Metro X and a short reprieve to attempt to increase ridership to save the #15 bus to York Redoubt. A review will be undertaken involving an outside consultant in 12–18 months to evaluate the results and suggest possible route optimization. There are 322 conventional buses in the fleet, all of which are low wheelchair accessible. Halifax Transit operates 57 conventional transit routes within the Urban Transit Service Area, broadly similar to the metropolitan region of Halifax Regional Municipality, including the areas of Eastern Passage, North Preston/Cherry Brook and Herring Cove. Routes are numbered according to the type of service provided. Express routes established as Metro Link express bus service operates Monday to Friday.
The two express routes began service in August 2005. The system consists of two limited-stop accessible express routes, connecting downtown Halifax's Scotia Square bus terminal, with the Portland Hills terminal in Cole Harbour on the Dartmouth side, the Sackville Terminal in Lower Sackville. Regional Express Routes MetroX, is Halifax Transit's rural express bus service. There are three routes which started operating in August 2009 running between Halifax and Tantallon, the Airport, Porters Lake, respectively. All routes terminate at Scotia Square in downtown Halifax, are handicap accessible and have facilities to carry bicycles. Rural routes provide some suburban and rural communities access to the regular and express bus system operated by Halifax Transit. There are three rural routes provide service between Beaverbank. Halifax Transit provides two passenger ferry routes, one connecting downtown Halifax with Alderney Landing in Dartmouth, the other connecting with Woodside; each route is serviced by a pair of vessels.
The ferry services are integrated with the bus services. The harbour ferries board 1.4 million passengers each year Ea
South Wales is the region of Wales bordered by England and the Bristol Channel to the east and south, mid Wales to the north, west Wales to the west. With an estimated population of around 2.2 million, three-quarters of the whole of Wales, Cardiff has 400,000, Swansea has 250,000 and Newport has 150,000. The region is loosely defined, but it is considered to include the historic counties of Glamorgan and Monmouthshire, extending westwards to include Carmarthenshire and Pembrokeshire. In the western extent, from Swansea westwards, local people would recognise that they lived in both south Wales and west Wales; the Brecon Beacons national park covers about a third of South Wales, containing Pen y Fan, the highest British mountain south of Cadair Idris in Snowdonia. Between the Statute of Rhuddlan of 1284 and the Laws in Wales Act 1535, crown land in Wales formed the Principality of Wales; this was divided into a Principality of North Wales. The southern principality was made up of the counties of Ceredigion and Carmarthenshire, areas, part of the Welsh kingdom of Deheubarth.
The legal responsibility for this area lay in the hands of the Justiciar of South Wales based at Carmarthen. Other parts of southern Wales were in the hands of various Marcher Lords; the Laws in Wales Acts 1542 created the Court of Great Sessions in Wales based on four legal circuits. The Brecon circuit served the counties of Brecknockshire and Glamorgan while the Carmarthen circuit served Cardiganshire and Pembrokeshire. Monmouthshire was attached to the Oxford circuit for judicial purposes; these seven southern counties were thus differentiated from the six counties of north Wales. The Court of the Great Sessions came to an end in 1830, but the counties survived until the Local Government Act 1972 which came into operation in 1974; the creation of the county of Powys merged one northern county with two southern ones. There are thus different concepts of south Wales. Glamorgan and Monmouthshire are accepted by all as being in south Wales, but the status of Breconshire or Carmarthenshire, for instance, is more debatable.
In the western extent, from Swansea westwards, local people might feel that they live in both south Wales and west Wales. Areas to the north of the Brecon Beacons and Black Mountains are considered to be in Mid Wales. A further point of uncertainty is whether the first element of the name should be capitalized:'south Wales' or'South Wales'; as the name is a geographical expression rather than a specific area with well-defined borders, style guides such as those of the BBC and The Guardian use the form'south Wales'. The South Wales Valleys and upland mountain ridges were once a rural area noted for its river valleys and ancient forests and lauded by romantic poets such as William Wordsworth as well as poets in the Welsh language, although the interests of the latter lay more in society and culture than in the evocation of natural scenery; this natural environment changed to a considerable extent during the early Industrial Revolution when the Glamorgan and Monmouthshire valley areas were exploited for coal and iron.
By the 1830s, hundreds of tons of coal were being transported by barge to ports in Cardiff and Newport. In the 1870s, coal was transported by rail transport networks to Newport Docks, at the time the largest coal exporting docks in the world, by the 1880s coal was being exported from Barry, Vale of Glamorgan; the Marquess of Bute, who owned much of the land north of Cardiff, built a steam railway system on his land that stretched from Cardiff into many of the South Wales Valleys where the coal was being found. Lord Bute charged fees per ton of coal, transported out using his railways. With coal mining and iron smelting being the main trades of south Wales, many thousands of immigrants from the Midlands, Ireland and Italy came and set up homes and put down roots in the region. Many came from other coal mining areas such as Somerset, the Forest of Dean in Gloucestershire and the tin mines of Cornwall such as Geevor Tin Mine, as a large but experienced and willing workforce was required. Whilst some of the migrants left, many settled and established in the South Wales Valleys between Swansea and Abergavenny as English-speaking communities with a unique identity.
Industrial workers were housed in cottages and terraced houses close to the mines and foundries in which they worked. The large influx over the years caused overcrowding which led to outbreaks of Cholera, on the social and cultural side, the near-loss of the Welsh language in the area; the 1930s inter-war Great Depression in the United Kingdom saw the loss of half of the coal pits in the South Wales Coalfield, their number declined further in the years following World War II. This number is now low, following the UK miners' strike, the last'traditional' deep-shaft mine, Tower Colliery, closed in January 2008. Despite the intense industrialisation of the coal mining valleys, many parts of the landscape of South Wales such as the upper Neath valley, the Vale of Glamorgan and the valleys of the River Usk and River Wye remain distinctly beautiful and unspoilt and have been designated Sites of Special Scientific Interest. In addition, many once industrialised sites have reverted to wilderness, some provided with a series of cycle tracks and other outdoor amenities.
Large areas of forestry and open moorland contribute to the amenity of the landscape. Merthyr Tydfil grew around the Dowlais Ironworks, founded to exploit the locally abundant seams of ir
Economy of Halifax, Nova Scotia
The Halifax Regional Municipality is a major generator of economic activity in Atlantic Canada. The largest employer in HRM is government, with most provincial government departments headquartered in the area, as well as many regional offices for federal government departments and agencies; the Department of National Defence is the single largest employer and Halifax Harbour continues to serve a major military purpose as the Atlantic Ocean home port for the Royal Canadian Navy. CFB Halifax is Canada's largest naval base and the nation's largest military base in number of personnel; this base comprises various shore-based facilities including HMC Dockyard, Stadacona, CFAD Bedford, other adjunct facilities throughout HRM and central Nova Scotia. 2/3 of the navy's major ships are home ported in Halifax. Another major military facility is located at CFB Shearwater in Eastern Passage; this is used as a heliport for the CH-124 Sea King. The largest influence on HRM's economy is related spin-offs. Halifax is one of Canada's top four container ports in terms of the volume of cargo handled.
Halifax Harbour is strategically located just north of the Great Circle Route between western Europe and the Eastern Seaboard of North America as the first inbound, last outbound major port of call on the continent with strategic rail connections to central and western Canada and the United States. The Halifax Port Authority operates two major container terminals, a medium-sized oil refinery, numerous general cargo piers and more specialized cargo handling piers for products such as automobiles and bulk gypsum. Port facilities are increasingly used for logistics support of offshore natural gas production platforms near Sable Island, for ongoing oil and gas exploration; the port has a shipyard and the eastern side of the harbour is home to Canadian Coast Guard Base Dartmouth and the internationally renowned Bedford Institute of Oceanography. In recent years, there has been an increase in number of cruise ships through a redeveloped passenger terminal at Pier 21; the port is the eastern terminus of the transcontinental Canadian National Railway which maintains extensive facilities around the waterfront.
The Halifax Shipyard is one of Canada's most well-equipped, having undergone a $300-million modernization to accommodate the building of new combat vessels for the Canadian navy. Another deep water port is the Sheet Harbour Industrial Port, which serves the offshore and forestry industry in eastern Nova Scotia. Agriculture, mining and natural gas extraction are major resource industries found in the rural areas of HRM; the main agriculture area of the Halifax Regional Municipality is the Musquodoboit Valley. The total number of farms in HRM is 150, of which 110 are family-owned, at the 2001 census there were 3,630 people working in agriculture and resource-based industries in the municipality, out of a total population of 359,111. Fishing harbours are located along all coastal areas with some having an independent harbour authority, others being managed by small craft harbours under the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans. Forestry is most common in the Musquodoboit Valley - Eastern Shore area.
Other resource industries in HRM include the natural gas fields off the coast of Sable Island, as well as clay, gold and gypsum extraction in rural areas of the city. HRM is a major regional manufacturing centre, it is an exporter of beer, being home to the Keith's brewery and Oland Brewery as well as several local specialty beers produced in micro-breweries. The aerospace industry has an increasing significance in the regional economy, through engine manufacturer Pratt and Whitney Canada, IMP Aerospace, as well as the increasing passenger and cargo traffic at Halifax International Airport. With the largest population centre in Atlantic Canada and a geographically central location in Nova Scotia, HRM has witnessed a transformation in its economy during recent decades with the growth of the service sector; the historic home to the Bank of Nova Scotia, the municipality has received an influx of banking and financial service-related employment in recent years. Maritime Life is headquartered in the municipality and many call centres and information technology firms are located in HRM.
Halifax is home to the three largest law firms in Atlantic Canada, McInnes Cooper, Stewart McKelvey, Cox & Palmer. The economy of HRM has been strong in the past decade. Growth in public sector employment at all levels of government that far exceeds demographic population growth nationally, coupled with wage and benefits packages that are at least 12% greater than comparative private sector jobs have provided HRM with sustained growth in population and economic activity in recent years. HRM has benefited from a demographic shift of younger Atlantic Canadians from rural and small town communities to urban centres. Another important ingredient in HRM's growth has been a major investment in offshore oil and gas exploration, resulting in many high-paying jobs locating to the area. Halifax Harbour was the staging site for much of the development of the Sable Offshore Energy natural gas project during the late 1990s, as well as somewhat smaller crude oil development projects during the 1970s-1990s.
Unemployment is low and is well below both the provincial and national averages. The number of construction projects for residential and commercial structures has grown steadily.
Dalhousie University is a public research university in Nova Scotia, with three campuses in Halifax, a fourth in Bible Hill, medical teaching facilities in Saint John, New Brunswick. Dalhousie offers more than 4,000 courses, 180 degree programs in twelve undergraduate and professional faculties; the university is a member of a group of research-intensive universities in Canada. Dalhousie was established as a nonsectarian college in 1818 by the eponymous Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia, George Ramsay, 9th Earl of Dalhousie; the college did not hold its first class until 1838, until operating sporadically due to financial difficulties. It reopened for a third time in 1863 following a reorganization that brought a change of name to "The Governors of Dalhousie College and University"; the university formally changed its name to "Dalhousie University" in 1997 through the same provincial legislation that merged the institution with the Technical University of Nova Scotia. There are two student unions that represent student interests at the university: the Dalhousie Student Union and the Dalhousie Association for Graduate Students.
Dalhousie's varsity teams, the Tigers, compete in the Atlantic University Sport conference of Canadian Interuniversity Sport. Dalhousie's Faculty of Agriculture varsity teams are called the Dalhousie Rams, compete in the ACAA and CCAA. Dalhousie is a coeducational university with more than 18,000 students and 130,000 alumni around the world; the university's notable alumni include a Nobel Prize winner, 91 Rhodes Scholars, a range of other top government officials and business leaders. Dalhousie was founded as the Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia George Ramsay, 9th Earl of Dalhousie desired a non-denominational college in Halifax. Financing came from customs duties collected by a previous Lieutenant Governor, John Coape Sherbrooke, during the War of 1812 occupation of Castine, Maine; the college was established in 1818, though it faltered shortly after as Ramsay left Halifax to serve as the Governor General of British North America. The school was structured upon the principles of the University of Edinburgh, where lectures were open to all, regardless of religion or nationality.
The University of Edinburgh was located near Ramsay's home in Scotland. In 1821 Dalhousie College was incorporated by the Nova Scotia House of Assembly under the 1821 Act of Incorporation; the college did not hold its first class until 1838. In 1841 an Act of the Nova Scotia House of Assembly conferred university powers on Dalhousie. In 1863 the college opened for a third time and was reorganized by another legislative act, which added "University" to the school's name: "The Governors of Dalhousie College and University". Dalhousie reopened with one tutor; when it awarded its first degrees in 1866 the student body consisted of 28 students working toward degrees and 28 occasional students. The first female graduate was Margaret Florence Newcome from Grafton, Nova Scotia, who earned her degree in 1885. Despite the reorganization and an increase in students, money continued to be a problem for the institution. In 1879, amid talks of closure due to the university's dire financial situation, a wealthy New York publisher with Nova Scotian roots, George Munro, began to donate to the university.
Munro is credited with rescuing Dalhousie from closure, in honour of his contributions Dalhousie observes a university holiday called George Munro Day on the first Friday of each February. Located at the space now occupied by Halifax City Hall, the college moved in 1886 to Carleton Campus and spread to Studley Campus. Dalhousie grew during the 20th century. From 1889 to 1962 the Halifax Conservatory was affiliated with and awarded degrees through Dalhousie. In 1920 several buildings were destroyed by fire on the campus of the University of King's College in Windsor, Nova Scotia. Through a grant from the Carnegie Foundation, King's College relocated to Halifax and entered into a partnership with Dalhousie that continues to this day. Dalhousie expanded on April 1, 1997 when provincial legislation mandated an amalgamation with the nearby Technical University of Nova Scotia; this merger saw reorganization of faculties and departments to create the Faculty of Engineering, Faculty of Computer Science and the Faculty of Architecture and Planning.
From 1997 to 2000, the Technical University of Nova Scotia operated as a constituent college of Dalhousie called Dalhousie Polytechnic of Nova Scotia until the collegiate system was dissolved. The legislation that merged the two schools formally changed the name of the institution to its present form, Dalhousie University. On 1 September 2012 the Nova Scotia Agricultural College merged into Dalhousie to form a new Faculty of Agriculture, located in Bible Hill, Nova Scotia. Dalhousie has three campuses within the Halifax Peninsula and a fourth, the Agricultural Campus, in Bible Hill, Nova Scotia. Studley Campus in Halifax serves as the primary campus; the campus is surrounded by residential neighbourhoods. Robie Street divides it from the adjacent Carleton Campus, which houses the faculties of dentistry and other health profession departments; the campus is adjacent to two large teaching hospitals affiliated with the school: the IWK Health Centre and the Queen