JIS News

Work on the refurbishing of a large earth drain adjoining the Georgia district in western St. Thomas, should be completed next week.
The $2 million project, which is being undertaken under the Lift-Up Jamaica programme, included the paving of a 2,590,800-metre (850 feet) drain and the placing of stones along its 1.77-metre wall (seven foot).
“We are about 95 per cent completing the wall and about to pave the invert (bottom). Since we started, work has been going quite quickly,” said Works Overseer at the St. Thomas Parish Council, Joseph Thomas.
He told JIS News, that the project, which started four weeks ago, has created temporary employment for four masons, a team leader and 40 labourers from the community. He said persons employed as labourers were replaced every fortnight with other workers from the community.
Secretary/Manager of the St. Thomas Parish Council, Clinton Gordon, told JIS that the project was selected by the member of parliament of the area, James Robertson, who saw the need for the drain to be paved so as to control the flow of water and prevent soil erosion.
“Because it is not controlled, it tends to destroy the earth on either side, resulting in the undermining of homes,” Mr. Gordon said, noting that over 70 per cent of the homes in Georgia had suffered extensive damage caused by “uncontrolled water” flowing from the hills during heavy rains. “The paving of the drain will prevent the loss of property and land in the area,” Mr. Gordon added.
Meanwhile, the Secretary/Manager informed that renovation would be done on two fordings and roads in Georgia, providing the availability of funds.
He noted that temporary repair work was done to the fordings and roads to allow for easy access in and out of the community, but stated that there was still need for additional work. Roads in Georgia had been damaged by flooding and heavy rains associated with Hurricanes Dennis and Emily and Wilma.
Lift Up Jamaica was introduced by the Government of Jamaica in 1999 to address development needs in rural towns and inner-city communities.