Nova Scotians could soon own two small islands, considered to be the jewels of Mahone Bay. Natural Resources Minister David Morse told members of the Mahone Bay Islands Conservation Association today, Nov. 10, that the province will negotiate with the owners of Backmans Island and Coveys Island to bring both properties under Crown ownership and protection. “Both locations would be a wonderful legacy for all Nova Scotians,” said Mr. Morse. “Residents and tourists have come to appreciate the beauty and unique nature of Mahone Bay. Public ownership would ensure that the pristine qualities of the islands remain intact for generations to come. We hope to finalize purchase arrangements before March 31, 2007. When that’s complete, we look forward to working with members of the Mahone Bay Islands Conservation Association on future stewardship programs.” John Meisner, chair of the association’s acquisitions committee, says said the commitment by the province’s commitment demonstrates tremendous shows vision. “We are very pleased that our partnership with the Department of Natural Resources continues to develop in such a positive manner,” said Mr. Meisner. “It started with the acquisition of Andrews Island last year, which our members supported financially in a big way. The potential addition of Backmans and Coveys islands to public ownership would provide long-lasting value to Nova Scotians and visitors from around the world.” For more information on the Mahone Bay Islands Conservation Association, visit the website at www.mahoneislands.ns.ca .