Tue | Aug 22, 2017

Poor attendance hurting Hanover PC

Published:Wednesday | December 16, 2015 | 12:01 AM
Nerris Hawthorne

WESTERN BUREAU:

Nerris Hawthorne, the president of the Lucea Development Initiative, is concerned about what she says is the frequent absence of some councillors from the general meetings of the Hanover Parish Council.

"It seems to be a very challenging time where leadership is concerned. It has always been so, but at the moment, it seems to be even more obvious," Hawthorne told The Gleaner on Monday. "I recently attended the regular monthly meeting of the parish council and was very surprised to find that there were no councillors from Western Hanover. I am yet to know why that is so ... It is very difficult for the mayor to be able carry out the functions if he has not got the support of all the councillors."

"I find that there have been many meetings of the council that have not been fully attended. Therefore, the people are not being represented in the way that we expected. Over the years, it (attendance) seems to have deteriorated even more, and it is very noticeable now because most people who came to the last meeting were asking the same question: 'where are the councillors'?" Hawthorne added.

The people's furture

Hawthorne said she was particularly concerned about how the actions of the councillors will impact the future of the people of Hanover.

"It is troubling because people send them there to be their representatives and the people are not being represented. I am looking at the future with great concern. The mayor may be called to higher office and I am now troubled as to the continued leadership of our council. I am wondering where these persons are going to be coming from that are going to lead us," said Hawthorne.

"In the whole of my time, I have not seen that the MP and the councillors are working together for the benefit of the area. The many things that need to be done in the town need combined leadership. I know that one councillor has been ill and, whenever he can, he has shown up for some period, but I am not aware of why the others have not been there," argued Hawthorne.

Like Hawthorne, Leonard Sharpe, the vice-president of the Hanover Parish Development Committee, is also unhappy with the state of attendance at the parish council meetings.

'not the first time'

"It is not the first time the councillors are doing this. This was the last meeting of the year and no councillor from Western Hanover attended the meeting, so the people's business was left unattended," said Sharpe. "Nobody knows why they didn't come to the meeting because there was no announcement of an apology for them not coming.

"There should be a recall of councillors when they are not working properly. You go to meetings and you hardly see some councillors," continued Sharpe. "Sometimes you find people come to meeting and spend a five minutes and sign, and from they sign the register, they gone. That's why over the period, nothing much has been happening, especially in the Lucea area. Most of the ones from the west are constantly late. They look like they are not interested."

claudia.gardner@gleanerjm.com