79.1 F
Cruz Bay
Sunday, July 25, 2021
HomeNewsLocal newsSarauw Calls V.I. Roads Deplorable, Especially in Frederiksted

Sarauw Calls V.I. Roads Deplorable, Especially in Frederiksted

Sen. Genieve Whitaker questions the equity of work done throughout the territory by the Department of Public Works. (Photo by Barry Leerdam of the V.I. Legislature)

Roads in the U.S. Virgin Islands are deplorable, Sen. Janelle Sarauw told Derek Gabriel the acting commissioner of the Department of Public Works, and several other members of the Committee on Disaster Recovery and Infrastructure on Wednesday agreed, pointing to roads in Frederiksted as particular bad.

Gabriel was presenting the committee with a long list of projects on which his department was working, but senators let him know that, though they liked hearing about all the projects being worked on, what they really wanted to hear was about projects completed.

Gabriel admitted residents might find “more patience” when coming upon road and other infrastructure projects unfinished, if, they saw some finished projects.

Sen. Novelle Francis suggested picking some “low hanging fruit” projects to reassure the public that work is getting completed. He mentioned bus shanties in La Reine and Campo Rico on St. Croix and the building at Kramer’s Park. Assistant Commissioner Dennis Brow said the department had completed all the work on bus shanties on government land. He said it was not clear the two shanties mentioned by Francis were the government’s responsibility. Gabriel said the work at Kramer’s Park was making its way through the funding and contractual process but still needed time.

Advertising (skip)
Advertising (skip)

He said the same about another project mentioned often during the meeting – the Community Center in Cruz Bay on St. John. Gabriel said the contract “hopefully” for the building in Cruz Bay would be signed at the beginning of summer.

Sarauw, who chaired the meeting, pointed to roads as one place in desperate need of attention that the public would notice.

Sen. Franklin Johnson said his “heart sinks” every time he goes to Frederiksted and sees the road conditions.

“You cannot leave that town like that for six or seven months,” Franklin said. “People live in these towns. … Let’s make Frederiksted a priority.”

Sen. Genieve Whitaker said she was concerned there might be inequity between the work being done in the different districts in the territory. Sarauw said the disparity she saw was on St. Croix between the towns of Christiansted and Frederiksted. She said, “The closer I get to Frederiksted, the worse the roads get.”

Sen. Kurt Vialet suggested that the department road crews could be sent to the states to learn how to do better jobs fixing the roads. He also suggested the five paving companies operating in the territory find ways to upgrade their equipment.

In his testimony, Gabriel said the department was challenged because the department lacked engineers, technical experts, and construction managers. Despite the challenge, the department is managing over 200 disaster recovery projects. He said $68 million to manage the Federal Highway Administration Emergency Relief projects had been received and $22 million was expended and the balance is reserved for construction projects.

Office of Disaster Recovery Director Adrienne Williams-Octalien also attended the meeting. She shared a breakdown of FEMA funds. Thus far, $52.7 million was obligated to Public Works and $38.8 million has been expended. Management costs were $2.8 million, $47.2 million was utilized for debris removal post-storms, and $2.7 million was for permanent work.

Editor’s note: This story has been edited since it was originally posted to include the correct name of one of the senators involved in the hearing and her contribution to the debate. The Source regrets the error.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email




Support local + independent journalism in the U.S. Virgin Islands

Unlike many news organizations, we haven't put up a paywall – we want to keep our journalism as accessible as we can. Our independent journalism costs time, money and hard work to keep you informed, but we do it because we believe that it matters. We know that informed communities are empowered ones. If you appreciate our reporting and want to help make our future more secure, please consider donating.



JOIN OUR MAILING LIST

STAY CONNECTED

20,771FansLike
4,348FollowersFollow

FROM FACEBOOK

Comments Box SVG iconsUsed for the like, share, comment, and reaction icons
19 hours ago
Virgin Islands Source

Juju & Cece’s Lemonades and Treats is hosting a "Freco and Lemonade" event today from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Cultured Naturals Body Care located on Company Street in Christiansted, St. Croix.

The business, Juju & Cece’s Lemonades, evolved from a summer project put together by 4-year-old Juliett Reid-Ventura and 3-year-old Gracie Reid-Ventura. #visource #usvi #supportlocalbusiness
... See MoreSee Less

Juju & Cece’s Lemonades and Treats is hosting a Freco and Lemonade event today from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Cultured Naturals Body Care  located on Company Street in Christiansted, St. Croix. 

The business, Juju & Cece’s Lemonades, evolved from a summer project put together by 4-year-old Juliett Reid-Ventura and 3-year-old Gracie Reid-Ventura. #visource #usvi #supportlocalbusiness

Comment on Facebook

Cute as a button. Darling little princess. Please protect them

Make sure they Mask 😷 up.

Loving and trusting someone is such a risk and i don't wish any woman to be in the same shoes as i was sometime back when I caught my husband red-handed with my own best friend in our own bed. I couldn't believe it when I saw it and my heart started beating so fast and felt like my body is shaking then I ran straight to my elder sister's house. I cried so much and my sister left me to cry and told me it would help ease the pain I was feeling. Then she sat me down and asked me if I still love my husband and I told her yes of course, and she told me that we all learn and grow through mistakes and no one is perfect and told me that if I wanted my man back I should fight for him and never trust friends again.My sister told me to contact profisma+27783320386 who had helped her husband with financial issues and told me he will help me bring my man back. It took me weeks to think about it because we come from a strong religious background but things worsened because I could not even concentrate at work and i got fired, and after that, i remembered what my sister had told me about consulting with him. That's when I contacted him and told everything, he listened, and told me that he will solve all my problems in 48 hrs. Since it was my first time doing this, i could not believe his words just like that but i had to wait until the time he had promised. I was asked to buy materials to help me which I did, we begun the prayer and results were delivered in three days. My husband called me and asked me where I was, and he came straight to me and confessed how my best friend seduced him, and he was sorry to fall into her trap and showed me all the messages my best friend was sending to him and promised never to see her again and promised to love me and only me. That evening he took me to a romantic dinner, Since prophet isma helped me, I got a better paying job than the previous one, my husband is back to the old man I used to know and he loves me so much and does everything to see that am happy. Thank you so much prophet, your spells indeed work. If you're going through struggles, you can text him on WhatsApp +27783320386 or call him

Load more
Print Friendly, PDF & Email