JIS News

The Association of Local Government Authorities (ALGA) has moved to strengthen ties with the Parish Development Committees (PDCs) in an effort to enhance local governance and move parish development forward.
The membership of the ALGA, representatives of the island’s PDCs and parish councils and the Social Development Commission (SDC), met recently at the Golf View Hotel in Mandeville, in the first of a series of island wide workshops aimed at solidifying relations.
“We (ALGA) have a mighty job to do. We believe we’ve started and it is intended that this workshop.will be another step in the re-energizing of ALGA and the establishment of a relationship with the PDCs,” said President of ALGA and Mayor of May Pen, Councillor Milton Brown.
He said that to achieve this goal, it was important to clarify the roles and responsibilities of the PDCs, the parish councils and ALGA; to assist the PDCs to understand the mutually beneficial relationship to be had with ALGA; and to determine how these organizations could effectively interface with each other.
According to Mayor Brown, coming out of the workshop, PDCs were expected to be fully constituted by December 2005, in addition to the establishment of strong communication links between the organizations. He added that ALGA would be hosting a second developmental workshop in December and would also be moving to develop a business plan.
He called on the SDC, in its role as the local facilitating group for empowering and building communities, to assist in the strengthening of weak or non-functioning PDCs.
A little more than 80 persons participated in the workshop, where they sought to identify areas in which the cohesiveness between the organizations should take place, including the co-opting of parish council secretary managers and PDC chairpersons as members of ALGA.
They said that the process of working together would ensure a coordinated approach to development; help to drive the process of local government reform; ensure legal ratification of the agreed governance structures and adequate funding to execute the implementation of local development project initiatives.
The workshop was funded by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA).
The ALGA is the organization responsible for representing the interest and welfare of the local government authorities and to advance local government in general.
It is comprised of six committees, namely: International Relations; Ethics, Standards and Discipline; Economics and Development; Policy and Reform; Membership and Training; and Infrastructure and Physical Development.
ALGA meets on a monthly basis and has its main offices on Brooks Avenue in May Pen.