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KSAC a toothless watchdog

Published:Saturday | August 6, 2016 | 12:00 AM

KSAC a toothless watchdog

Residents of Hughenden and surrounding communities are at their wits? end with the operations of an illegal metal fabrication workshop in their midst.

It is bewildering why the operators chose to locate their workshop in the middle of a residential neighbourhood, completely surrounded by dwellings, instead of premises more suited to industrial activities, but it is even more bewildering that the Kingston and St Andrew Corporation (KSAC) seems to be allowing them to breach zoning laws.

Despite calls to the KSAC and the Ministry of Local Government, which have claimed that a stop order has been served on the operators, the residents see no sign of any intention to stop operations. Instead, the shop has made moves to further expand the business by extending the physical structure.

It suggests to us that they are aware that the KSAC order is unenforceable and may be ignored. We have been told by the KSAC that it is now at the legal level, and as such, much information as to the progress of the case cannot be shared. We hope it is not a situation where we are told something meant to placate us while nothing to rectify the problem has actually taken place, especially when it appears that the premises seem to be taking steps to be a permanent and offensive fixture.

We are left to wonder if the KSAC is actually capable of doing its job of keeping communities free from encroachment of commercial/industrial entities. Why do we pay our property taxes when the presence of such operations in our communities has the crippling effect of devaluing our greatest investment, our homes? How can one business enterprise be allowed to inconvenience and negatively affect the lives of hundreds with its noise of workers and clanging metal, smells associated with welding, and the eyesore of a building encased in zinc?

We are beseeching the KSAC and the Ministry of Local Government to do their jobs effectively and save another community from sliding into the status of a ghetto. It?s the perception of corruption that matters. Don?t let your offices be perceived to be turning a blind eye to a problem or actively allowing an illegal operation to continue.