Spanish Town Mayor supports Goat Islands development fully
Spanish Town Mayor, Norman Scott, says he is in full support of the use of the Goat Islands for any developmental activity.
There has been a growing public divide since the August announcement from Environment Minister, Robert Pickersgill, that the Government is seriously considering a proposal from a Chinese investor to use the protected islands as a transshipment port.
Scott says his opinion does not represent the St Catherine Parish Council which has not formally considered the matter.
However, he argues that the parish would reap significant social and economic benefits should the islands be assessed and approved as the site for a proposed port and industrial park.
Scott says because the parish has jurisdiction over the islands located off the coast of Old Harbour, it’s expected that the Government would seek the opinion of the council.
He notes that should the council not support the proposal, its position can be overridden by the Housing and Urban Development Corporation acts.
The acts allow some agencies and officials to bypass the parish councils' building approval process.
Environmentalists and representatives of some civil groups have come out against the proposal, arguing that such developments will result in widespread destruction of the flora and fauna on the islands.
The Government has insisted that the standard steps will be taken including an environmental impact assessment before any decision is made.
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