KINGSTON — The St. Catherine Parish Council is continuing its public education programme in the parish, to highlight the roles and functions of the organisation, as part of its activities for Local Government Month.
Speaking at a JIS 'Think Tank' on November 15, Secretary/Manager of the St. Catherine Parish Council, Christopher Powell, said the Council is made up of 40 sitting Councillors and it is very important to get the involvement of citizens in the decision making process of local governance.
"What we have been doing since June is to have community for a across the length and breadth of St. Catherine, to inform the citizens of the role of local government within the parish, and their responsibility as citizens in local government," he explained.
"We have been stressing the areas of compliance in terms of paying rates, taxes and what those taxes are used for, in delivering quality services to the citizens of St. Catherine. We also urge them to engage their Councillors in direct dialogue, so that they can be more aware and more informed," Mr. Powell said.
The Secretary/Manager pointed out that what has come out of those meetings is that some citizens are not totally aware of the role and functions of the local authority, so the for a are essential.
Several other activities are planned by the St. Catherine Parish Council for the month, including an exhibition at the Council highlighting the activities that have been undertaken since last year November.
"We also have our youth council, which has been meeting over the past year. It’s an annual event, so we target the youth throughout the parish for them to be more aware of what is going on in local government," Mr. Powell said.
"Going forward, we will be targeting the schools, because it is our view that we need to have dialogue and engage students to inform them about the important role of local government," he added.
By O. Rodger Hutchinson