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Tuesday, July 5, 2022


Sonia Jacobs Dow, the last of the administration's unconfirmed cabinet nominees, was approved as the new Labor Commissioner by the Senate Wednesday.
"Although you may not have been groomed within the Department of Labor, I believe you are going to be a fresh breath of air in that department," Sen. Judy Gomez said. "The morale in the Department of Labor is low. There are divisions with one person with a huge caseload on their shoulders."
Senators were clearly impressed with Dow's appearance before the Senate Committee on Rules.
"I traveled to St. Croix to attend the Rules Committee at which Sonia Dow was being confirmed and I have to stand and speak to the fact that she was very impressive," Sen. Donald Ducks Cole said. "This is an individual who has been in the department for a month and she has immersed herself in the department."
Dow is the wife of Michael Dow, chairman of territorial tycoon Jeffrey Prosser's V.I. Community Bank.
The only open post remaining in Gov. Charles Turnbull's cabinet is Tourism Commissioner; however, he has yet to appoint a new candidate to replace his first nominee, Clement "Cain" Magras, who was rejected by the Senate last month.
The Senate also set a committee of the whole hearing on Beal Aerospace's land swap proposal. The hearing will take place at 5 p.m., Friday, in Frederiksted.
"I believe this project will be a great benefit to the territory and St. Croix in particular, and it will increase job opportunities for our people," Turnbull wrote in a letter to Senate President Vargrave Richards.
Under the proposal, the government will swap 14.8 acres of land in Estate Great Pond with Beal for 14.8 acres of various parcels in Whim and Grange Hill. Beal will use the Great Pond land to construct a rocket factory and offices.
"Without this exchange, the Beal Aerospace project cannot go forward," Turnbull said. "The appraisals have confirmed the value of the parcels to be exchanged is favorable to the government."
A Committee on Government Operations hearing on the service level of the Water and Power Authority scheduled to take place on St. Croix Friday evening has moved to 10 a.m, Friday morning.

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