640Million Bill To Fix Roads Damaged By Floods

Some 215 roadways have been blocked or badly damaged by flood events since the start of the current fiscal year in April, resulting in a bill of some $640 million to reopen and reinstate those thoroughfares. Story Highlights Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, made the disclosure during a statement to the House of Representatives on October 1. He noted that $84.73 million of the damage was incurred earlier in the year. “That is before these last two weather events. It is important to note that the amount was voted in the 2019/20 fiscal year for emergency repairs. We have paid out $54.75 million of that so far,” Mr. Holness said. Some 215 roadways have been blocked or badly damaged by flood events since the start of the current fiscal year in April, resulting in a bill of some $640 million to reopen and reinstate those thoroughfares.Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, made the disclosure during a statement to the House of Representatives on October 1.He noted that $84.73 million of the damage was incurred earlier in the year. “That is before these last two weather events. It is important to note that the amount was voted in the 2019/20 fiscal year for emergency repairs. We have paid out $54.75 million of that so far,” Mr. Holness said.He noted that at present, “all roads have been reopened to at least single lane, while work continues to remove blockages from silt and landslides”.Meanwhile, the Prime Minister said that with the first supplementary estimates for the 2019/20 fiscal year already tabled, the Administration will be “re-examining the Budget that we have and do what governments have to do, which is make priorities”. read more

NSC Approves Citizen Security Plan

The National Security Council (NSC) has approved the Citizen Security Plan (CSP).The Plan, which was approved on Thursday (October 3) during the regular monthly meeting of the NSC, is aimed at improving citizen security in at-risk communities and is a key component of Plan Secure Jamaica (PSJ).The presentation was delivered by PSJ Coordinator, Brigadier Roderick Williams of the Office of the National Security Advisor.Prime Minister Andrew Holness, who is Chairman of the NSC, received an update from Commissioner of Police, Major General Antony Anderson regarding the recent closure of the Criminal Records Office of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF). Commissioner Anderson assured the Council that services will resume next Monday, October 7, at an alternative location in Downtown Kingston.The closure of the Criminal Records Office was initiated by the JCF, due to health reasons. The Council acknowledged there is an infrastructure deficiency at the new location and in the interim has asked the Commissioner to report to Cabinet on an Infrastructure Plan. Government entities are also being asked to exercise discretion where Police Records are required until a return to normalcy.In the meantime, concerns were raised regarding habitual traffic offenders who breach the Road Traffic Act. The Police Commissioner advised the NSC that there will be increased focus on interdicting such offenders. Prime Minister Holness directed the Ministries of Justice and National Security along with the Attorney General’s Office to coordinate efforts to ensure there is a robust system of enforcement.The NSC also discussed recent concerns raised by members of the Entertainment Fraternity about the enforcement of the Noise Abatement Act. The Prime Minister, while recognizing the value of the Entertainment industry to Jamaica, emphasized that all relevant stakeholders will be working towards solutions, for objective standards and services, within the ambit of the Law.In his operational update, Chief of Defence Staff, Lieutenant General Rocky Meade, disclosed that the Jamaica Defence Force Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) that has been assisting in Hurricane Relief efforts in the Bahamas since September 7, had a successful mission. The DART will begin returning to Jamaica next week, while a small advisory team will remain in the Bahamas.Additionally, Director General of the Major Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Agency (MOCA), Colonel Desmond Edwards, informed the Council that there are currently 320 cases before the courts; 102 are being actively investigated while the Agency has secured a total of 29 convictions since the start of the year.The NSC meeting was also attended by Opposition Spokesman on National Security, Fitz Jackson signaling the Government’s bipartisan approach. The National Security Council (NSC) has approved the Citizen Security Plan (CSP). The Plan, which was approved on Thursday (October 3) during the regular monthly meeting of the NSC, is aimed at improving citizen security in at-risk communities and is a key component of Plan Secure Jamaica (PSJ). The presentation was delivered by PSJ Coordinator, Brigadier Roderick Williams of the Office of the National Security Advisor. Story Highlights read more