Sun | Sep 19, 2021

Sav mayor frustrated at incomplete municipal corporation building

Published:Monday | September 14, 2020 | 12:13 AMAlbert Ferguson/Gleaner Writer
Bertel Moore, mayor of Savanna-la- Mar.
Bertel Moore, mayor of Savanna-la- Mar.


Savanna-la-Mar Mayor Bertel Moore has expressed his frustration at the protracted delay in the Westmoreland Municipal Corporation (WMC) building becoming fully operational.

“I am very frustrated by what is happening. Most of the coverings for the electrical sockets are left uncovered,” Moore said while addressing last Thursday’s regular monthly meeting of the Westmoreland Municipal Corporation.

“We need to see the WMC building completed by the end of this month. I don’t want to come back here and it remains the way it is,” Moore said.

On June 1, the corporation ended years of rental arrangements and moved into the partially completed building on Murray Street, off Great George Street in Savanna-la-Mar where Superintendent of Roads and Works Ava Murdock had given an undertaking that the building would have complete at the end of July, but failed t meet that deadline due to several delays being encountered with the importation of a few items from overseas.

“It is totally unacceptable for the building to stay the way it is for the past two months; I want to see the hiccups we are have rectified,” said Moore.

According to the Savanna-la-Mar mayor, citizens from across the parish are trying to communicate with the administrative arm of the corporation without success, because there is no publicly known telephone number for them to call.

Since the WMC moved into the a new building, their established telephone lines are down and has not yet been transferred.

“How long is it going to take to have a proper line in here? People calling and can’t get us; they don’t know where to call because it’s a cellular phone we have. It just cannot work like that. We need to get things going,” Moore insisted.


Meanwhile, councillor for the Grange Hill division, Lawton McKenzie, says the building has serious issues, as, he said, when it rains several offices are flooded.

He said that on September 9 he was in the WMC building, where he saw more than four locations leaking.

“I would not like to be in here with another rainfall like that. The building was under water in such a way that it was better I was outside in the rain,” McKenzie said, as he bemoans the condition of the building.

“I saw the ladies [auxiliary staff] running around with buckets, mops and newspapers, mopping up floodwaters,” he recalled. “Any time the rain sets up again, an officer [from. the Roads and Works Department] must be here to identify the leaks in the building and have them corrected.”

There was several years of delays in the construction of the building, which should have been completed in 2016 under a contract valued at $78.4 million dollars and signed in 2015.

Last year, the local municipal authority was forced to carry out the remaining works on the building with their own resources after the legal department of the Ministry of Local Government severed arrangements the contractor, who had ran into financial difficulties coupled with poor health conditions.