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  • Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Hon. Desmond McKenzie, says that adequate funds are available for parish councils to undertake drain cleaning during the 2016 hurricane season.
  • He said that a number of parish councils, by virtue of submitting requests to the Ministry for assistance, have received allocation for drain cleaning.
  • He noted further that within the councils “there is a source of funding that is kept in savings that they can use to respond to emergencies; so it is not lack of funding”.

Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Hon. Desmond McKenzie, says that adequate funds are available for parish councils to undertake drain cleaning during the 2016 hurricane season.

“No parish council in Jamaica has been deprived of any funding for drain cleaning,” the Minister said in response to a question posed during a press conference at the Office of the Prime Minister in Kingston on August 3.

He said that a number of parish councils, by virtue of submitting requests to the Ministry for assistance, have received allocation for drain cleaning.

“Of the 14 parish councils, including the Portmore Municipal Council, it is only about five that funds have not been dispatched to as I speak,” he noted.

He noted that the local authorities are aware that they are allowed to use allocations from the parochial revenue fund for the months of June and July for drain cleaning.

“When we receive the requests from the parish councils we respond, but each parish council knows by protocol that for the months of June and July, the monthly allocation that goes to the parish council from the parochial revenue fund, they know they can use the first two months’ allocation for drain cleaning,” he said.

He noted further that within the councils “there is a source of funding that is kept in savings that they can use to respond to emergencies; so it is not lack of funding”.

In the meantime, he said the administration has set aside $250 million for the first phase of drain cleaning for all parish councils.