JIS News

Minister of Local Government, Community Development and Sports, Portia Simpson-Miller is to meet with parish development and community development committees, beginning next month.
At these meetings, the Minister will be briefed about the work being undertaken by the committees. She will also give details about what is being done by the Ministry and Parish Councils to promote Local Government Reform. These consultations will take place islandwide.
Details about the meetings were given by the Minister when she addressed members of the St. Catherine Parish Council at their monthly meeting held recently in Spanish Town, St. Catherine.
Mrs. Simpson Miller said that Mayors of Local Authorities would also have community meetings in their parishes to discuss the scope of work to be undertaken by their Councils during the next financial year. She said the meetings would be held after the approval of the Councils’ budgets.
The Minister said it was necessary to inform persons of the priorities of the Councils, so they would be aware of what could be done with the resources available.
On the matter of the Pound Act, Mrs. Simpson Miller said that some Parish Councils were not taking action to deal with the problem of stray animals, even though the Act was passed in Parliament and Local Authorities could remove stray animals from the streets.
“What we need to do now is to educate the people and to warn them to keep their animals on their property,” she emphasised.
After listening to concerns raised by Councillors, Minister Simpson Miller said the challenge facing Local Authorities was for them to convince their citizens that the Councils could be “more efficient and responsible”.
She urged Councillors to put partisan politics aside and work for the improvement of the country, despite the limited resources.
“The people want delivery of services. They are not interested in political squabbles and quarrels of the Council,” the Minister emphasised.

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