Bodden Town residents angry

Nearly 200 residents were up-in-arms at a meeting Thursday night and grumbled their discontentment about the way hurricane funds allocated to Bodden Town were being handled.

A few residents even got up and left, stating the meeting was turning into a circus ground and would not have been productive.

District resident Twyla Vargas said it was the biggest turn out of residents in any fund meeting that she could recall.

After the hurricane, Bodden Town was allocated $1.4 million to help with hurricane rebuilding, of which $1.2 million had already been spent.

Of the $200,000 left, Bodden Town district committee chairman George Ebanks said that the funds had been allocated but had not been presented yet, and it would go to people whose homes had been totally destroyed.

For more than two hours those gathered voiced their concerns. One resident asked what could be done if a contractor was already paid and the job was not completed or started.

Deputy chairman of the BT committee Uriel Scott said it would have been out of government hands at that stage and there was nothing they could do, adding residents would have to seek some sort of legal action.

Mr. Ebanks said the meeting was not called to find immediate solutions but to address the needs, inform people of committee members and to seek help for those that had completely lost their homes.

He suggested that people seeking assistance for furniture and other household appliances should apply to the National Hurricane Fund.

Other major issues raised by residents were that some people had received funds while other did not, jobs were started by contractors and not finished and some had not received any assistance at all.

Mr. Ebanks said the conclusion they had come to was that there were still a lot of needs in the district and not all had been met.

‘The committee is in the process of working with government to see if we can address the most needed,’ he said.

He said those persons who have applied for assistance and did not get a reply should be patient because the committee was presenting a proposal to government to see if more funds could be allocated; to this, he said government seemed very receptive.

Also stated at the meeting was that the recovery fund office had set up a new set of rules for applicants.

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