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Landscaping of public roads on the move due to RATED Programme

Roadside bush clearing on Virgin Gorda, left, and Tortola, right, through the RATED Programme. Photo: Team of Reporters
Bush clearing at Great Mountain is a most welcomed sight, especially as it will allow tourists to get a better view of Road Town. Photo: Team of Reporters
Bush clearing at Great Mountain is a most welcomed sight, especially as it will allow tourists to get a better view of Road Town. Photo: Team of Reporters
Bush clearing in North Sound, Virgin Gorda, which is in the Ninth District of Hon Vincent O. Wheatley, the Minister for Health and Social Development. Photo: Team of Reporters
Bush clearing in North Sound, Virgin Gorda, which is in the Ninth District of Hon Vincent O. Wheatley, the Minister for Health and Social Development. Photo: Team of Reporters
Roadside bush clearing in North Sound, Virgin Gorda. Photo: Team of Reporters
Roadside bush clearing in North Sound, Virgin Gorda. Photo: Team of Reporters
NORTH SOUND, Virgin Gorda, VI- For months, taxi drivers, pedestrians, and motorists on Tortola, Virgin Gorda, and Jost van Dyke have been complaining about heavy bushes on the side of the roads causing driving, and walking hazardous.

Well, the Registration Apprenticeship Training Employment and Development (RATED) Programme, now in its first year anniversary, is to the rescue. The programme is the brainchild of Premier and Minister of Finance Dr the Hon Natalio D. Wheatley (R7).

Districts 9 & 5 on the move

Many areas throughout the Territory have crews working in the different districts, cutting back the bushes that are making driving and walking a challenge. Take for example North Sound, Virgin Gorda, which is in the Ninth District of Hon Vincent O. Wheatley, the Minister for Health and Social Development.

There is now a crew of six, including a supervisor, cleaning the areas of North Sound of bushes, overgrown trees and shrubs. Many residents and tourists are delighted to witness the bush clearing and the efforts being placed to correct the most often unsightly situation.

In District Five headed by Hon Kye M. Rymer, the Minister for Communications and Works' crews are busy at Great Mountain on Tortola, cutting bushes and ensuring that the lookout parts are also visible. There are other districts with active crews in the programme now coordinated by the new Department of Waste Management (DWM) Director Mr Marcus E. Solomon.

Opposition held Districts 6, 3 & 8 not left behind

The Sixth District, with Representative Hon Myron V. Walwyn and the Third District, with Hon Julian Fraser RA, also have active crews in the RATED Programme. Other districts seem to be still getting organised and submitting their crews’ names.

District Eight, with Representative Hon Marlon A. Penn, is winding down, as its crews have almost reached their six-month mark.

The programme is not only about bush cutting but a few have been assigned to departments and ministries of government, as there is an office component of the programme.

More than a million dollars has been assigned to the programme, according to budget figures obtained by our newsroom. Additionally, after six months, persons are rotated out of the programme and new crews are hired, according to someone familiar with the RATED Programme rules.

It is believed that with the transfer from the Public Works Department to DWM, the programme is allegedly working much better, according to a senior officer speaking on condition of anonymity.

Premier Wheatley legacy programme?

One of the early signature programmes of Premier Wheatley is the RATED Programme that provides young and old residents employment, albeit temporarily, with a minimum pay of $100.00 a day and can go as high as $150.00 per day, and even higher if a senior management post is secured in the RATED programme. 

22 Responses to “Landscaping of public roads on the move due to RATED Programme”

  • FEDEL CASTRO (08/11/2023, 16:45) Like (10) Dislike (1) Reply
    well xmas coming them man need them pay Thoe
    • @ Fedel Castro (08/11/2023, 19:38) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
      Sometimes you just have to take that step and go in faith, but their paychecks are safe as the article said a million bucks is set aside for the program
  • HAHAHA (08/11/2023, 17:16) Like (25) Dislike (7) Reply
    I have never seen the standard task of cutting bush so glorified. What is this, the cave man era? What government want, a pat on the back? What a basic programme that puts the country at least 10 steps back. You got to see the folly to believe it buddy.
    • @ HAHAHA (08/11/2023, 18:35) Like (6) Dislike (7) Reply
      Ok funny man we see you old jealous criminal
      • @ @Hahaha (09/11/2023, 03:45) Like (1) Dislike (4) Reply
        Retarded for assuming the maker of a comment especially since you are dead wrong. Last laugh hahaha
  • Same old, similarities year by year (08/11/2023, 17:22) Like (3) Dislike (1) Reply
    Good governance where, and when??????????

    Political tactics is in full swinging in the BVI. The same old mindset of Big eating small fish is continuing, daily. The employer, the general public, becomes subject to the employees, the political leaders even before the last ballet is has been counted on general election day. This is the system that was forced on us, namely Democracy. Even after 2,600 years, the same old, same behavior is continuing unabated or nonstop.
    Before a few weeks ago, we had gotten little rain. But thanks to the Almighty One, heavy rain showers have been poured on us, even this present day. Because of the continuation of rain showers, our employees, political leaders have given some bush cutting, and road cleaning jobs to some of us, their employees, we the people.
    I am happy though, for all that were given, and still actively cutting roadside bushes, and road cleaning jobs. I hope that you will be paid as soon as your duty is done.
    • @ same old, similarities year ... (08/11/2023, 18:47) Like (6) Dislike (1) Reply
      We the youths of tola are very apprehensive because we did not have everything or work we thank the government for their foresight
  • good show (08/11/2023, 18:12) Like (8) Dislike (1) Reply
    This is a good start . I admire the work done by the City manager’s crew and constantly wonder why each district doesn’t have a similar crew to take care of the overgrown trees, shrubs and grass along the main roads.
  • Lb (08/11/2023, 18:36) Like (5) Dislike (4) Reply
    Heard Myron working this programme but don’t have the balls to thank the premier
    • @Lb (09/11/2023, 01:43) Like (1) Dislike (3) Reply
      To be honest the only thing really new with the programme is the age group. Public Works had a similar programme for senior people.
  • ................................. (08/11/2023, 18:44) Like (7) Dislike (6) Reply
    Congrats premier and your team you wuking baby
  • man (08/11/2023, 18:45) Like (7) Dislike (0) Reply
    Good job Jason aka Mad
    .respect brother
  • A father from svg (08/11/2023, 19:24) Like (6) Dislike (3) Reply
    Clap clap clap to this program my son got a work from home sleeping and smoking all day
  • Bush Professor (08/11/2023, 22:41) Like (3) Dislike (1) Reply
    I’m not averse to maintaining aesthetic along road sides, and properly managing vegetation to provide good visibility, safety, etc., for both motorists and pedestrians. This is routine work and should occur as the certainty as the sun rising in the east and setting in the west. Residents expect, resources permitting, routine delivery of basic services, viz, landscaping, etc to occur as regularly as clock work.

    Nevertheless, what residents want to see regarding the road network is a complete and proper revamping of the design, construction, and maintenance of roads. Roads that does not flood with a low return period rain, ie, 2-year rain. Further, the road does not quickly deteriorate and become riddled with potholes with the first rain. Roads should be properly designed and constructed for a specific lifecycle with proper maintenance. The roads may not last 20 years but surely should last longer 1-2 years at most. This short lifecycle is throwing good money at bad. Let’s do it right the first time.
  • CUTTING BUSH? (09/11/2023, 00:20) Like (2) Dislike (5) Reply
  • hoping (09/11/2023, 05:03) Like (3) Dislike (1) Reply
    When things are done right, it takes time, as the Rated programme faced criticism from many politians who now benefiting....As the adage goes about Rome being built!
  • resident (09/11/2023, 05:09) Like (4) Dislike (2) Reply
    Now you haters see why we lot will keeeeeep voting these vip back in office, at least they still find ways to help people
  • Dancing with the starsI (09/11/2023, 08:28) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    Must Jesus bear His cross alone and let the world go free. Well despite all the initiatives that the government introduced, there is always criticism. The opposition seems to be politically bankrupt and are trying to score political points. With all the years of experiences and years of being in politics, I am not seeing the political maturity. Walking out of the House of Assembly would not solve a problem. There can be only one government at a time and members of the opposition should wait until the next election to see if the voters would elect them to serve.

    Hon. Fraser should consider leaving the political arena because he has lost his political direction. His level of debate is very poor and if I was in his corner, I would have told him quietly. The size of the budget is inadequate to administer this country. Should the government increase tax it would be a recipe for riot. What we should consider doing is to look for foreign investors to inject a large amount of money in a joint venture project that will benifit both parties.
    • Bush Professor (09/11/2023, 09:23) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
      @Dancing with the StarsI, in regards to the inadequate budget, resource-poor countries, ie, they lack the natural resources to develop either a) a primary economy, or b) secondary economy. They typically have service economies, ie, services in which they have a comparative advantage, ie services with the lowest opportunity cost.

      Lacking in natural resources, their O&M and capital budgets are funded from taxes and fees and borrowing. In regards to borrowing, though there is an increasing demand for services from the populace, there is also a disdain for increased taxes and fees, if only temporary. to service the increasing demand. The BVI has number of physical infrastructure, and soft and social infrastructure needs and in order to meet the need, it prudently must borrow. The BVI is a Third World emerging locale and according to OECD, the suggested prudent debt to GDP ratio is 30-50%. The BVI current debt to GDP I surmised is less than 20%. The financial gurus can set me straight. Anyway, the average tax rate among the 30 OECD countries is 46%; this number is dated. The bottom line if the BVI wants to progress it must prudently borrow to invest in capital projects, ie, roads, ports, utilities, ports, telecommunications, etc. Anyone knows what the current overall tax rate is to GDP?
  • Not vip (09/11/2023, 09:45) Like (5) Dislike (1) Reply
    This Project was not vip,idea they just take it and use it, without gaving the person credit that bought it forward. VIP even though I love them have not a clue what to do with this country. They just put up a front when you hear them speak ,who don't know better falls for it .
  • The lies sweet (09/11/2023, 20:18) Like (1) Dislike (1) Reply
    Stop it Nate, you know good and well that the R.A.T.E.D Program was not your idea. I have a copy of the program that was written for it in 2020 and put forward, and to date you have never given that person any credit for that initiative. The sad part is this isint the first time you've taken someone else's work and pass it as your own. If you're not stealing people work, you giving credit to your VIP committee members for other persons itellectual properties who ain't help you do nothing besides bad spend the government money. Who know, know, and who wants to believe this crap have fun, and continue to watch him work baby !!
  • Dancing with the starsI (11/11/2023, 22:55) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    The BVI cannot remain stagnant because some of the populaces do not want to support Foreign Investment. The country is bigger than individuals. There are many areas where resources can be obtained from. For instance, selling of investment bonds for a period of ten years. That will generate substantial amount of money to develop the infrastructure, such as the needed airport expansion. The government should consider a joint venture to develop the Prospect Reef Hotel and re-establish the Dolphin Discovery. The government can invite an entity to produce beverage and water on another joint venture because it will be a win, win enterprise for the investor and the government.

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