PSC deems ‘Container fees’ “nonsense”
The Private Sector Commission (PSC) said it is “increasingly concerned” about the Mayor and City Council’s (M&CC’s) approach to making decisions which negatively impact the business community and the citizens of Georgetown without consultations.
In a statement on Friday, the PSC said it had reason to express concerns over “the controversy which has arisen over the M&CC’s attempt to impose a contract to install parking meters without due transparency and public consultation. Now we have this nonsense.”
Pointing out that it is cognizant of the fact that the Councilors face a significant challenge in restoring discipline to the city and which also requires sufficient revenue to be run efficiently, the PSC condemned what it termed as ‘bullying’ the business sector.
The commission alluded to an incident on Tuesday 19th July 2016 when “the Town Clerk directed his officers and the Constabulary to barricade the entrances of a number of shipping wharfs preventing the movement of vehicles transporting containers on the city streets” intending to “force” the previously imposed G$25000 Container fee.
“The Commission wishes, however, to remind the Council that the business sector and residents of the city are its means of revenue and that partnership and consultation are infinitely preferable to confrontation and unlawful behaviour in the name of revenue collection,” the PSC said.
Following Tuesday’s occurrence, the PSC said it late on Wednesday, invited the Town Clerk to a meeting with its Council and members of the Shipping Association to which he readily facilitated.
“The meeting facilitated a frank, open and generally informative exchange of views on the matter,” the PSC said.
The Commission said, according to legal advice obtained by the Commission, the fee is unlawful.
The PSC says it looks forward to further discussion on the matter, hopefully, resulting in a sensible and professional resolution reflecting the mutual interests of the business community, the citizens