MONTEGO BAY — Mayor of Savanna-La-Mar and Chairman of the Westmoreland Parish Council, Councillor Bertel Moore, says effective management of solid waste is critical to the enhancement of the health of citizens; hence such task should be the responsibility of the local authority.
Addressing the monthly meeting of the Council in Savanna-la-Mar Thursday May 12, Mayor Moore noted that the importance and effectiveness of the job would have been best advanced in the hands of the local body, the Parish Council, as officers would have greater opportunity for sustained supervision and monitoring.
Strong support for the Mayor’s suggestion came from Councillors present, with Councillor Earl Brooks being the most vocal, saying among other things that, “until we have a situation where solid waste management, including collection and distribution, is the responsibility of the local authority, we are not going to get the kind of service that we really need”.
He noted that all that was needed was the necessary infrastructure, inclusive of resources and, once those were in place, respective areas of parishes should begin to see significant improvement in solid waste management.
Councillor Brooks also called for the position or post of ‘garbage collector’ to be given more prominence or prestige, referring to such as ‘Solid Waste Technicians’ or ‘Solid Waste Engineers’ and assigning to them the necessary protective uniforms and other attire, with a ‘decent salary’ attached to the position, to attract younger and stronger persons to the hardworking and presently ‘aged’ crew members.
Councillor Brooks revealed that some ‘over aged’ workers, who were beyond 75 years, were observed on the job very late at nights. He suggested that the local authorities should be given the opportunity to manage this important aspect of their own affairs.
Several areas within the parish of Westmoreland have been having great challenges with the management of their solid waste, due to the scarcity of needed resources.
By GLENIS ROSE, JIS REGIONAL OFFICE