Government

Statia Government to meet Fishermen next week on New Ordinance

Boat owners protesting new measures and requirements in December 2020.

Oranjestad- According to information provided to the Central Committe of the Island Council of St. Eustatius, Government will meet next week with the fisherman about the new Marine Ordinance.

According to Government Commissioner Marnix van Rij, Government would meet with the fishermen on Monday. “It will be a big meeting”, said Van Rij who also indicated that the Harbor Master and the Harbor Inspector would both be present to answer questions for the fisherman.

Both PLP Leader Rechelline Leerdam and DP-leader Adelka Spanner wanted to know from Van Rij what the next steps would be when it came to the effect of the new ordinance on the local fisherman.

Execution

Van Rij told the Central Committee members that it was the Island Council which was responsible for the approval of the Marine Ordinance and the execution thereof. According to Van Rij, based on the discussions in the Island Council, some changes to the proposed Ordinance, or the way it will be executed (enforced, editor), could still be made.

Follow-up

Chairman of the Central Committee, Rueben Merkman, noted that there would still be enough time between Mondays meeting and the next session of the Island Council on March 4th. Merkman therefore suggested that the Central Committee would meet before that date, to receive an update on the meeting with the fisherman.

Local boat owners and fisherman have been upset about stipulations in the new ordinance, which confronts them with new rules and regulations and would potentially limit them in what they are allowed to do or not. A letter was sent by the fisherman, demanding that they be heard, before the new Ordinance is approved and implemented.


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