“I want to first of all and most importantly apologize to Nova Scotians who’ve lost faith in me as their minister,” said Barry Barnet yesterday in response to the ATV debacle.

The health promotion and protection minister told reporters at a news conference he “made a mistake” and the off-road vehicle safety program for kids should not have been publicly funded.

He backed up the premier, saying Rodney MacDonald knew nothing about the $230,000 program and the 66 kid-sized motorbikes the department bought.


He said he was the one who approved the spending and it was not passed through cabinet.

Natural Resources Minister David Morse, who’s been charged with the responsibility of cleaning up the mess, said there was a lack of communication about the program.

“I wish that had been shared with me; I would have suggested that it not be done,” he said about the purchase of the ATVs.

Now Morse will find a way to recover the more than $200,000 and said he’ll be looking at the ATV-riding community.

“We’ll encourage them to repay that money that was, in essence, given to them,” he said.

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