JIS News

The Portmore Municipal Council, is to undertake a reclamation exercise to restore the quality of the Hellshire Beach in St. Catherine and enhance beach space.
Chairman of the Portmore Municipal Council, Mayor Keith Hinds, told JIS News, that the problem that exists on the Hellshire Beach was “frightening.”
“We have serious erosion on the beach right now, in fact, there are areas out there where there is only two feet of beach which is left. Right now some of the buildings are being built on the sand dunes so there’s no replenishing of sand for the beach itself so some readjustment has to take place,” he said.
The Mayor pointed out that only recently, he met with urban planners at the Urban Development Corporation, UDC, which is spearheading an initiative with the United States Peace Corps and assisted by the Hellshire Fisherman’s Co-operative, as a serious look has to be taken at the environmental impact on the Hellshire beach. “The squatter problem on the beach is also an issue and we have to see how we can find a good way to deal with that because Hellshire beach cannot continue that way . we’re losing the beach and those persons there on the beach at the moment, they must recognise the importance of dealing with the issue,” he said.
Addressing the issue of regulations, the Mayor stressed the importance of enforcement, noting that there is need for a consensus among stakeholders regarding the way forward.
“We cannot have thousands of people coming to our beach on a weekly basis and the sanitation is not proper, there are several things that have to happen, maybe not all at once but we are certainly looking to operate in a way that all parties concerned can come to a consensus,” he said.
Preliminary negotiations have already begun Mayor Hinds pointed out. He noted that as the negotiations advance, the Government would become more involved “. because it is the best beach on this side of the island.” he said.