Briggs: I donated to save reefs, not the tender business

The bosses of Caribbean Marine Services insist the business is not funding the campaign against the piers.

Though co-owner Adrien Briggs acknowledges he has donated some money, both he and business partner Attlee Bodden deny ploughing substantial funds into the anti-dock movement.

Briggs acknowledged he has personally provided funding to both environmental group Save Cayman and to the referendum campaign. He said he had committed up to $100,000 to the cause.

Bodden said he had not put any money into either organisation and had not even signed the petition. He said he had decided to “stay out of it”.

Briggs said he made no apologies for donating personal funds.

“I own Sunset House and I own Sunset Divers. I have an interest in a couple of other water sports operations on the island.

“I feel that pier will be very detrimental to the marine environment and I personally have put my own money in it and I intend to keep doing that,” Briggs said.

Though he believes CMS would have been entitled to fund a campaign to protect the jobs of its workers, he said doing so would have made the business a target.

“I don’t think government can get its mind around the fact that this is a people-generated referendum and the island in general is against it,” he added

Business manager David Carmichael said he had faced similar questions from the cruise lines and assured them the business had not funded the campaign.

“The CPR Referendum is a fight about reefs, economics, people, overtourism, it is not a fight about keeping our tender company alive,” he said.