Shea calls it quits

James
James McLeod
Send to a friend

Send this article to a friend.

Opposition MHAs predict more resignations

One of the stalwarts of the Progressive Conservative government — Environment Minister Joan Shea — is calling it quits.

Environment Minister Joan Shea announces her resignation from cabinet as Premier Tom Marshall looks on. Shea has been a member of the PC party cabinet since it first formed government in 2003. — Photo by James McLeod/The Telegram

Shea has been a member of the Tory inner circle since she was elected in 2003, and was one of only two members of the PC caucus who’s remained around the cabinet table that whole time.

The other one, Premier Tom Marshall, said he’s sad to see her go.

“She leaves a legacy to be proud of. She’s been a passionate advocate for women and children. She’s been a tireless voice for education,” he said. “Her contributions to the people of Newfoundland and Labrador will be felt for many years to come.”

Shea has served in a range of different portfolios — Advanced Education and Skills and its precursor, Human Resources, Labour and Employment; she was the minister who founded the Department of Child, Youth and Family Services, and most recently she served as Environment minister.

Friends and colleagues said she was a fierce advocate for children, education and women’s issues.

“I firmly believe that you cannot go wrong by having an educated population,” Shea said, talking about her ethos in government while announcing her resignation.

She said the resignation just came down to the fact that she was getting tired.

“Being a politician is a lifestyle, not a job. You need energy and enthusiasm to do this job, and when you begin to feel tired, it’s time to step aside and let others step up,” she said.

“I made the final decision within the last couple of days and once I made it, I committed to it.”

When Marshall was asked if he expects any more high-profile resignations in the near future, he said wryly, “I can tell you one.”

Marshall will retire in July to make way for incoming premier Frank Coleman, who does not yet have a seat in the House of Assembly.

This sets up a pair of byelections on the west coast of the province in two longtime Tory districts —

St. George’s-Stephenville East and Humber East.

The premier has to call a byelection in a vacated district within 60 days.

Opposition politicians reacting to Shea’s resignation wished her well, but predicted there would be more longtime members of government leaving or not running again in the next general election.

“The polling, the way it’s showing now, certainly seems to be momentum for the Liberals,” Liberal MHA Tom Osborne said. “I wouldn’t be surprised to see more individuals leave the PC caucus.”

In addition to Shea and Marshall, then-premier Kathy Dunderdale resigned in January and former finance minister Jerome Kennedy stepped aside last year.

Osborne was a member of the Tory caucus for a long time, before he crossed the floor and joined the Liberals.

Marshall said  it’s all part of the evolution that the PC party is undergoing.

“We’re going through a process of a new leadership, of renewal,” he said. “He’ll be sworn in as premier and I expect to see people come and people go, as is inevitable in politics.”

 

jmcleod@thetelegram.com

Twitter: TelegramJames

Organizations: Tory, Human Resources, Department of Child Youth and Family Services House of Assembly.This

Geographic location: Newfoundland and Labrador, Stephenville East, Humber East.The

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Thanks for voting!

Top of page

Comments

Comments

Recent comments

  • Sally
    June 03, 2014 - 12:19

    I can't believe what we are becoming to, just a province of complainers, Now Mrs Shea is a thing of the pass, why waste energy slinging mud at this lady, after reading this article, and comments, Its don't look very bright for any of our districts, Lets look at the liberals, right now they are getting on the band stand, trying to tell us they are going to improve our economy, You got Frank Coleman singing roughly the same song, You got the NDP's only see spending, so tell who do we have? I know neither of those people understand the issue of the province or the people. Because if they did we wouldn't be heading into the poor house. Morning on the Paddy Daly show, he made a statement that was very smart on his part, and that don't happen to often from him, his statement was, maybe we should have 48 independent candidates to run for the 48 districts, I have to agree with him on that, maybe we'll get people of knowledge and common since. two of the things we are lacking from our leader.

  • Tony Rockel
    June 03, 2014 - 10:29

    ' “I firmly believe that you cannot go wrong by having an educated population,” Shea said, talking about her ethos in government while announcing her resignation.'--- I guess that's why she allowed her government to gut this province's public library system. And Mr Marshall, with his usual over the top hyperbole, goes on and on about Shea's "legacy", when in reality she is a shining example of the arrogance and ignorance that infects today's PC party and has effectively scuppered it for at least the next decade.

  • Tony Rockel
    June 03, 2014 - 10:22

    ' “I firmly believe that you cannot go wrong by having an educated population,” Shea said, talking about her ethos in government while announcing her resignation.'--- I guess that's why she allowed her government to gut this province's public library system. And Mr Marshall, with his usual over the top hyperbole, goes on and on about Shea's "legacy", when in reality she is a shining example of the arrogance and ignorance that infects today's PC party and has effectively scuppered it for at least the next decade.

  • Tony Rockel
    June 03, 2014 - 10:21

    ' “I firmly believe that you cannot go wrong by having an educated population,” Shea said, talking about her ethos in government while announcing her resignation.'--- I guess that's why she allowed her government to gut this province's public library system. And Mr Marshall, with his usual over the top hyperbole, goes on and on about Shea's "legacy", when in reality she is a shining example of the arrogance and ignorance that infects today's PC party and has effectively scuppered it for at least the next decade.

  • Wade
    June 03, 2014 - 09:18

    Joan did a much better job as a Minister than she did as a local rep. Never have I seen a Minister deliver so little to their own district as Joan Shea. The Bay St. George area would have received as much with opposition reps as they did with Government members. Hey Joan, can you take the Port au Port rep with you?

  • Henry
    June 03, 2014 - 07:38

    I guess Joan does not want to sit in opposition after next general election..

    • Jennie
      June 03, 2014 - 08:19

      you're assuming she would win her seat.

    • Henry
      June 03, 2014 - 09:40

      Absolutely correct Jenny. I would rather she not win!!! Best case scenario..

  • Joe
    June 03, 2014 - 07:37

    I was driving by Confederation Building this morning and heard the celebrations. Now I know why

  • Charles Murphy
    June 03, 2014 - 05:45

    People of those two districts, Now the time is for changes. Just look around at your community, ask yourself one question, why are we losing so many of our young people? The reason is we don't have anyone to bring us to the next step. Each and every year we ship in will over 800 million dollars of products to our province, that can be manufactured right here at home. putting our people to work, at the same time building our economy, so our young can have a future in their province of N & L. Lets put a stop to shipping out our main resource, OUR PEOPLE. Now its in your hands.

  • W Bagg
    June 03, 2014 - 05:28

    She meddled in the MUN presidential search and a good Newfoundlander didn't get the job. It went to a mainlander who will be gone as soon as his time is up too. If Coleman doesn't run in her district he won't get in, in Marshall's either

  • James
    June 03, 2014 - 04:58

    Hit the road, girl. You would have had the respect of the voters if you had quit years ago, same goes for the rest of the bunch!

    • DAVID PRIOR
      June 03, 2014 - 07:07

      Quite right James. We need people,with more brains and common sense, but where are they ?.

  • Sam
    June 03, 2014 - 04:55

    There's an expression, I think it goes something like "rats deserting a sinking ship". When you have individuals such as Joan Shea resigning her position and Marshall going right after Frank Coleman walks through the door, there's a message. All the backroom antics have destroyed the central core of the PC party and certain individuals should take note. Frank Coleman's coronation does not sit well with the people of this province and nor does the paving scam in Labrador.