Speaking to the media following his first Council meeting as Mayor last Thursday, Mayor McIntosh said that people had to take personal pro-active responsibility to prevent the breeding of mosquitoes in and around the home.
He expressed the view that the wealth of the parish was to a large extent vested in the health of its residents, and was fully supportive of Health Minister Dr. Fenton Ferguson in his pronouncement that we cannot play politics with the health of this nation.
He pointed out that many Hanoverians were employed in the tourism industry, which formed the backbone of the parish’s economy, and went on to observe that Hanover had the largest number of hotel rooms in the island.
Mayor McIntosh said “while we should make a healthy environment for our citizens, we must also ensure a hospitable environment for our clients and visitors who choose Hanover as a preferred vacation destination.”
The new Lucea Mayor emphasised that while the Hanover Health Services had moved to ensure anti-mosquito operations such as fogging, he said we too had a responsibility, and urged residents to punch holes in discarded tins and containers so they don't collect water, get rid of tires around the homes and elsewhere, cover containers because open containers and still water become breeding sites for mosquitoes.
He pointed out that the first order of business for the Council during this new dispensation was to clean the town of garbage as well as the debris that clog the drains and cause the town to flood whenever it rains.
He said the Hanover Parish Council has embarked on a drain cleaning programme as well as a general clean up of the town in conjunction with the National Solid Waste Management Authority - NSWMA.
At a meeting with the heads of agencies last week, the Mayor said he was given an assurance by the NSWMA to support the Hanover Parish Council in its clean-up drive. He said he gave his undertaking that he would lobby the Ministry of Local Government to get additional garbage trucks to assist in cleaning the town.
The Lucea Mayor pointed out that the Council, along with the Hanover Health Department, would also be embarking on an educational drive to enlist the support of the residents and business persons within Lucea to refrain from throwing garbage in the drains and on the streets and keeping their premises clean.
He said within the next three weeks, the Council would be announcing a cleanup day for Lucea where he would be inviting resident and business places to clean up their environment.
Mayor McIntosh also revealed that he had received a commitment from the Jamaica Public Service Company to reduce the number of power outages that have affected Lucea and surrounding areas. He said the JPS Parish Manager explained that electricity to Lucea was delivered by a 250 km single feeder line through the bushes that was susceptible to frequent outages.
The JPS pointed out that the frequent power cuts will be minimized when the feeder line is moved from the bushes and placed along the highway from Orange Bay to Lucea. He said the company was in the process of running this new line which would reduce the outages in the town.
The Lucea Mayor said the JPS Co would be constructing a new sub-station to serve the fifteen thousand residential and commercial customers in and around Lucea. He said the construction was expected to begin some time next year.
As part of the new mayor's thrust to have dialogue with the residents of the town, he will be meeting with a number of stakeholders. He is expected to meet members of the business sector before the end of the month, in an effort to solicit their support and to find out how the Council can better serve their interest and that of the town of Lucea and by extension, the parish of Hanover.
The new Lucea Mayor pledged to correct as many of the challenges which plague the residents of the town as well as the parish within the time allowed before the next Parish Council elections
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