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TURKS AND CAICOS POST CABINET MEETING STATEMENT

His Excellency the Governor, Peter Beckingham, chaired the 22nd meeting of the Cabinet on Wednesday, 3 August 2016, at the Hon. N J S Francis Building on Grand Turk.

TCI Cabinet Meeting

All Ministers were present except the Hon. George Lightbourne, Minister of Home Affairs, Transportation and Communication

At this meeting Cabinet:

  • Advised His Excellency the Governor to approve amending the Hotel and Tourism (Taxation) (Designated Restaurant) Order 2016 which lays out the criteria for an establishment to be considered as a designated restaurant for the purposes of the collection of tourism related taxes. The amendments would commence on 1 September 2016;

  • Agreed to support in principle an application for a license to construct a rock breakwater seawall in the Juba Salina in Providenciales subject to conditions as set out by the Departments of Planning and Environment and Maritime Affairs;

  • Agreed to support in principle an application for a license to construct and operate a beach restaurant and deck business in Grace Bay, Providenciales, subject to the conditions as set out by the Crown Land Unit and the Departments of Planning and Environment and Maritime Affairs;

  • Agreed to support in principle an application for a long-term lease over two parcels of commercial land for the development of a car retailing service centre in Grand Turk. Cabinet further approved the issuance of a notice for tender for a long-term lease over the identified parcels in accordance with the Crown Land Ordinance;

  • Agreed that the Attorney General’s Chambers should commence the drafting of the Sovereign Wealth Fund Bill which will bring the fund into effect;

  • Agreed the submission of the Statement of Net Excess Expenditure to the House of Assembly for consideration as part of the charge to Public Funds for the Financial Year 2015/16 and in accordance with the Public Financial Management Ordinance;

  • Agreed that the Attorney General’s Chambers should commence the drafting of amendments to Reg 3 (2) (d) (iii) of the Business Licensing (Amendment) No. 2 Reg 2015 and the repeal of the Immigration (Exemption) Order 2015 (30 of 2015);

  • Agreed that the Ministry of Finance, Investment and Trade should undertake a review of businesses operating in the reserved and restricted categories with the aim of formulating a policy to protect Turks and Caicos Islanders and Turks and Caicos Islanders interests in Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises;

  • Advised His Excellency the Governor to approve the grant of concession orders for four businesses under the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Policy operated by Invest Turks and Caicos;

  • Agreed in principle, subject to the standard legal, planning and environmental requirements, to a proposal by Grace Bay Resort for the development of 48 cottage rental suites and 4 residential homes as an oceanfront development in Providenciales;

  • Advised His Excellency the Governor to approve the advancement of the amendments to the Tobacco Ordinance to the House of Assembly which will exempt speciality shops, whose sole business is tobacco, to advertise and display tobacco products;

  • Advised His Excellency the Governor to agree for the Attorney General’s Chambers to commence drafting the regulations to the Tobacco Ordinance;

  • Advised His Excellency the Governor to agree for the Attorney General’s Chambers to commence the drafting of amendments to the Public and Environmental Health Ordinance to review the offences under sections 4, 5 and 7 to allow for a ticketing system and imposition of fines as penalties for non-compliance of upkeep of surroundings;

  • Advised His Excellency the Governor to conduct a consultation for a period of two weeks commencing Friday, 5 August 2016 among the political parties and those candidates who as of that date are widely known to be running independently, on recommended amendments to the voting ballot to change the current layout from a portrait to a landscape with candidates listed alphabetically and grouped by party affiliation, with the view of simplifying the voting process and presentation of candidates on the ballot for the voting populace;

  • Agreed to the commencement of a consultation of industry stakeholders for the construction of a national fibre ring along the circumference of the chain of islands to reinforce the data and communications connectivity of all the islands and to improve the broadband service experienced in the family islands;

  • Advised His Excellency the Governor to approve the amendments to the Telecommunications (Fee) Structure Regulations for the adoption of a revised license fee structure for commencement 1 September 2016;

  • Agreed for the body of the late Charles Glinton Snr. to lay in repose from 9:00 am to 12:00 noon on Saturday, 13 August 2016 at the General Post Office in Grand Turk;

  • Agreed to naming of the government building which currently houses the General Post Office as the Charles Glinton Snr. Building in honour of the late officer’s contribution to the work of the post office and the civil service;

  • Advised His Excellency the Governor to grant approval for the Ministry of Tourism, Environment, Culture and Heritage to enter a bid for the hosting of the 2017 Caribbean Tourism Organisation State of the Industry Conference in the Turks and Caicos Islands;

  • Agreed for the Ministry of Finance to set up a working group for the transitional arrangement for the Carnival Cruise Centre and Downtown Welcome Centre whose ownership will transfer to the Government once Carnival has recovered their investment which is expected to be in 2018;

  • Noted and gave support for the appointment of the Minister of Border Control and Employment Services as the Turks and Caicos Islands Special Representative to the CARICOM Committee of Ambassadors to represent the interests of the TCI in CARICOM led initiatives;

  • Advised His Excellency the Governor to approve the appointment of a Steering Committee for the CCTV Policing and Security Project which will expand the installation and monitoring of closed circuit television cameras in the islands of Providenciales and Grand Turk (initially) as a part of the National Security Council’s crime prevention and detection programme.The committee will comprise of members of the Police Force, the Computer Unit and other stakeholder government departments or agencies, and chaired by the Director of the Office of the Premier;

  • Advised His Excellency the Governor to appoint Ms. Tracy Smith of North Caicos to the National Health Insurance Board to meet the number of prescribed appointments in accordance with the National Health Insurance Board Ordinance;

  • Agreed to the approval of an additional five taxi licenses for Providenciales;

  • Denied a request for supplementary appropriation made by the judiciary for additional funding in the SIPT trials for legal aid costs.

Further information on these matters will be provided by Ministers in due course.

Published 10 August 2016