Beautiful Virgin Islands

Thursday, Dec 07, 2023

Money is there once you know where to touch it!

Money is there once you know where to touch it!

While some lawmakers may be experiencing challenges with the loss of their ability to execute certain projects in their communities and control how much-needed aid is disbursed to their constituents, one political aspirant has suggested there is light at the end of the proverbial tunnel.
Former Director of the Water and Sewerage Department (WSD), Perline Scatliffe-Leonard, who is running for office as an Independent Candidate in the Seventh District, pointed out that getting projects done within her district will not prove to be an insurmountable task once she gets elected.

“When it comes to the district, we have budgets specific to each district. So those funds are separate. So when you need to – we have beautification projects to do, we have certain uplifting projects within our community – the money is there, once you know where to touch it and where to go,” Scatliffe-Leonard said.

She continued: “There ain’t going be no stopping this Representative for the Seventh District. I know what to do. That’s the difference.”

Scatliffe-Leonard also suggested that she has an intimate knowledge of the territory’s Water & Sewerage woes in particular, and said once she has been elected she would better be able to push that agenda forward.

Tighter controls

Following the Commission of Inquiry (COI) report issued last year, tighter controls have been placed on the discretionary spending exercised by lawmakers, including on the assistance grants previously under their control.

In the framework agreement document for the implementation of the COI recommendations between the BVI and the United Kingdom, the government agreed to oversee a wholesale review of the territory’s welfare benefits and grants system.

This included HOA Members’ Assistance Grants and Government Ministries’ Assistance Grants. This is decision is aimed at moving towards an open, transparent and single or coherent system of benefits, based on clearly expressed and published criteria without unnecessary discretionary powers.

Welfare benefits and grants for residents have since been completely moved to the Social Development Department.

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