JIS News

The St. James Parish Council has established a $1.8 million development fund through which community-based organizations can access money to undertake development projects.
Suzette Brown, Public and Community Relations Officer at the Council, said that the fund would come into effect on April 1, 2004, and will see the granting of up to $150,000 to recognised community-based groups.
The plan is to make the grants on a monthly basis towards different projects in the various divisions. She informed that the money would be apportioned from the annual property tax collection.
To benefit from financing, community groups must be active and recognised by the Social Development Commission. They will be required to fill out project application forms, which are available at the Council. Submissions must exclude projects to undertake the fixing of roads, cleaning of drains and the bushing of lots.
The Council’s Finance and Administration Committee had approved the setting up of the fund at their February meeting.
Secretary/Manager of the Council, Christopher Powell, pointed out that the community development grant was basically a means of returning some benefits to residents who paid their property tax. He noted that the amount of $150,000 allocated per project was fairly small, “but it is significant in reach, as an entire community stands to benefit”.
Powell added that overtime, it was hoped that delinquent landowners would be encouraged to pay their property tax.

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