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Although Senators' main action at Thursday’s Finance Committee hearing was to advance a bill appropriating $15 million to the Waste Management Authority for outstanding debts to waste haulers, lawmakers also took the time to address the public about keeping the U.S. Virgin Islands clean.
Now that the fall semester has begun, Virgin Islands students, parents and educators are faced with the challenging realities of distance learning, not least of all that laptops designated for each of the territory's students have not reached everyone.
Options for distance learning may stick around long after the pandemic ends if legislation advanced Wednesday by the Senate Committee on Education and Workforce Development becomes law.
Confusion swept through the Legislature on Thursday during a special session at which senators were called to vote on changes to a debt refinancing bill that aims to rescue a fiscally crumbling pension system. By an 8-6 margin, the newly amended legislation narrowly passed.
The Bureau of Motor Vehicles stands to receive additional funding after the Senate Finance Committee voted on Wednesday to appropriate money for a rebuild of the St. Thomas facility that hurricanes Irma and Maria decimated.
The Senate Committee on Youth, Sports, Parks and Recreation unanimously advanced legislation on Monday that, if enacted, would add two more members to the Virgin Islands Sports Commission – something not all testifiers were in favor of.
Both the U.S. Virgin Islands Olympic Committee and the V.I. Housing Finance Authority told senators on Monday about the progress on building multipurpose sports complexes that would double as storm shelters on St. Thomas and St. Croix.
Legislators advanced a bill Friday that acts as the first step towards creating a new police department building in Frederiksted, St. Croix.
Despite the abilities of the V.I. Supreme and Superior Courts to conduct virtual hearings, child support and paternity hearings have halted since the pandemic hit in March, Attorney General Denise George told the Senate Finance Committee on Thursday.
The Virgin Islands Bureau of Internal Revenue’s collection rates are up this fiscal year, with a 7 percent increase in total revenue collections and a 20 percent increase in outstanding balance collections compared to the 2019 fiscal year, said BIR Director Joel Lee.