Nova Scotians were recognized as the principal beneficiaries of their offshore resources in a very real way today, June 30, with the delivery of $830 million in offshore revenues from the government of Canada. Premier John Hamm received a ceremonial cheque from Geoff Regan, federal Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, at Province House in Halifax. The actual financial transaction occurs electronically between the federal and provincial departments of finance. “We will apply this money directly to our provincial debt and use the interest savings for things that matter most — health care, education and investments in our continued growth and prosperity,” said Premier Hamm. “Nova Scotians were very patient through this four-and-a-half year process and I am very grateful for their support. I am pleased to report to them that our Campaign for Fairness has been successfully concluded.” The Department of Finance will start a schedule of debt repayments on Monday, July 4, with the retirement of a $150 million bond. Mr. Regan welcomed the completion of a deal which ensures Nova Scotia is the principal beneficiary of its offshore resource revenues. The transfer of funds follows the passing of the federal budget, which received Royal Assent Wednesday, June 29. “The offshore accord which received Royal Assent on Wednesday and the $830 million down payment made today will make a positive difference in the lives of all Nova Scotians and will help our province address its unique financial challenges,” Mr. Regan said. “Prime Minister Paul Martin made a commitment to Nova Scotians last year and the Government of Canada is fulfilling that commitment here today.” Nova Scotia had budgeted to receive the funds in the fall. Additional debt-cost savings will be factored into the province’s bottom line and recognized in the September fiscal update.