City Council Charts its course Print E-mail
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Written by Melanio   
Thursday, 22 March 2012 00:00

New City CouncilThe Belize City Council was sworn in to office on Friday March 16th; on the 19th portfolios were issued (see Insert 3). With the swearing in, the council officially took up office at City Hall and there are great expectations for the group of councilors and the new Mayor. The Guardian spoke to Mayor Darrell Bradley, who explained what the plans are for the council in the upcoming 3 years.

Bradley told the Guardian that immediately upon taking office, the council has identified three priority areas. Among those is the establishment of proper controls so that there are no improprieties with public funds. He added that those funds should be used to maximize the interest of Belize City residents in particular to improve the city’s infrastructure and conditions of the streets and drains.

 Another area to be addressed is to budget specific portions of the city council’s revenue for infrastructure. Bradley explained that, for now, the council is adopting a policy where 30 cents of every dollar will be spent on infrastructure. That policy is a temporary way of addressing the issue and legislation will be implemented to permanently allot the 30 cents to infrastructure development.

A third issue that will be addressed immediately is that of compliance to ensure the city is cleaned up. Areas of concern include overgrown lots, unclean streets, and grass growing high on the street sides. The new Mayor said that the Council wants to give Belize City a facelift by putting in place mechanisms within the first 100 days of office.

And as policies and structures are being put in place, the Council is already sourcing funding to purchase heavy equipment including a grade, roller and several dump trucks. These are expected to be acquired within the next week. This is an effort to give the council increased capacity to deal with infrastructure of the city. Complimenting the council’s moves will be the active seeking of collaboration with the public where residents or businesses, who would want ,can put up 50 percent of the cost of paving streets and improving drains and the council would immediately match the contribution and implement the work. The council will also be looking at working closely with the Ministry of Works to see what work can be done as soon as possible. This will be accompanied by a list of all streets in Belize City that the Council is coming up with.  This is to identify streets that urgently need ugrades.