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No Gov’t should take property from any Virgin Islander- Hon Fraser

- said issue with Ellis Thomas Downs needs to be addressed @ highest level
Opposition Leader and Third District Representative Hon Julian Fraser RA says the ongoing issue regarding Ellis Thomas Downs must be properly addressed at the level of the Premier. Photo: VINO/File
There is currently a ban on the use of Ellis Thomas Downs racetrack due to contractual issues between the Thomas Family and the Unity Government of Dr the Honourable Natalio D. Wheatley (R7). Photo: VINO/File
There is currently a ban on the use of Ellis Thomas Downs racetrack due to contractual issues between the Thomas Family and the Unity Government of Dr the Honourable Natalio D. Wheatley (R7). Photo: VINO/File
SEA COWS BAY, Tortola, VI- Opposition Leader and Third District Representative Hon Julian Fraser RA says the ongoing issue regarding Ellis Thomas Downs must be properly addressed at the level of the Premier.

There is currently a ban on the use of Ellis Thomas Downs racetrack due to contractual issues between the Thomas Family and the Unity Government of Dr the Honourable Natalio D. Wheatley (R7).

Premier is best person to resolve matter- Opposition Leader

There has been conflicting information regarding the matter, as the Thomas family had said it was the VI Government that cancelled the agreement over the use of land for Ellis Thomas Downs, while the Government has denied that it cancelled the contract.

“It is a matter that needs to be dealt with at the top. When I say at the top, I mean the Premier’s level. It has always been that case. I have been involved for many many years with the track and I made sure that I kept the facility itself in good order, good working condition, expand when necessary and improve when necessary, but as far as the contractual arrangements were concerned I always allowed the Premier to deal with that because he is always the best person in the best position to deal with those matters,” Hon Fraser told Virgin Islands News Online when questioned on the subject.

The Opposition Leader stated that the issue is “contractual” in nature and reiterated that the matter needs to be discussed at the highest level. “And it is not a matter for the streets.”

‘Guard against eminent domain’- Hon Fraser

Meanwhile, Hon Fraser said there are people who are advocating “eminent domain”; however, he would advise them to guard against that kind of behaviour, “and no Government in the Virgin Islands should ever engage in taking property from any Virgin Islander, no government.

“I will fight if that becomes the case. I will fight against it,” Hon Fraser stated.

Eminent domain is a term used in the United States to refer to the power of the government to take private property and convert it into public use, following the payment of just compensation.

See related articles below:

Unity Gov’t cancelled contract with Thomas family; Accused of misleading public

Unity Gov't denies cancelling contract with Thomas family

31 Responses to “No Gov’t should take property from any Virgin Islander- Hon Fraser”

  • Jim Jones (02/10/2022, 07:26) Like (45) Dislike (6) Reply
    Fraser himself is part of the problem. Its called KICK BACK!!
  • mmm (02/10/2022, 08:00) Like (32) Dislike (0) Reply
    But u did it when u was minister back in the day in east end
  • My property (02/10/2022, 08:04) Like (30) Dislike (2) Reply
    Horse racing here isn't that important for eminent domain.
  • Never Say Never (02/10/2022, 08:18) Like (14) Dislike (1) Reply
    Never wise to use things like never and always. Exceptions are not difficult to find. Consider for example infrastructure expansions that require incursion into private lands. Eminent domain gives states rights to such property but only if they purchase it at fair market value. I don’t see that as a govt. “taking” it away.
  • VG Resident (02/10/2022, 08:47) Like (33) Dislike (1) Reply
    Why does the government even get involved with a horse track. That should be owned and paid for by private companies and individuals. Keep the government out of horse racing!
  • hog city (02/10/2022, 09:04) Like (2) Dislike (12) Reply
    We with Frazer on this one the collision government to bad minded
  • fair is fair (02/10/2022, 09:31) Like (3) Dislike (13) Reply
    Pay the Thomas family a fair rental rate similar to what everybody else is getting for their land
    • Lb (02/10/2022, 12:01) Like (5) Dislike (1) Reply
      Pay them fair purchase rate for the land and tell dem move out!
    • Fair (02/10/2022, 17:05) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
      One hundred and eighty thousand a year? Are you absolutely insane?
      • Mrs Tubman (03/10/2022, 19:58) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
        That is pennies compared to what a serious investor would pay.
        This is the real world folks.
  • Oh yeah (02/10/2022, 09:51) Like (4) Dislike (7) Reply
    Represent your people to the fullest senator fraser
  • MY OPINION (02/10/2022, 12:55) Like (15) Dislike (0) Reply
    It is pure lunacy for the government to have been paying that kind of money to two sets of people for a sport that is practiced twice annually, if so often. Or even spending that ridiculous amount of taxpayers' money to actually build that size racetrack for horse racing that takes place on the day following Emancipation Monday and Boxing Day. How many genuine horse racing enthusiasts actually take part? And yes, I know all about the fashion parade, but is it worth it?

    That 'forward thinking' is way up in the clouds.
    • josiah'sbay (02/10/2022, 21:01) Like (8) Dislike (0) Reply
      I don't see that as a lot of money. The track is under utilized and mismanage. With the right people at the helm it should easily cover the rent plus make a handsome profit. Look to private investors.
      • Rob'ry (03/10/2022, 20:12) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
        Most definitely not a fair compensation. The owners are giving it away at that rate.
        And what is the average cost of each horse...A billion dollars worth of product and activity utilizing their unique and one a kind property and for only a measly 180 grand? I know Bishop of no persuasion getting more than that from the Government to " consult"????,
  • musa (02/10/2022, 13:33) Like (15) Dislike (1) Reply
    Just make the track smaller and race donkey
    • N.I. (03/10/2022, 09:54) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      now...who could dislike this comment? This is the best opinion yet!
    • @musa (03/10/2022, 22:28) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      Those donkeys could barely make it into the HOA for meetings to bray.
      Running around a mini race track would be out of the question.
  • WISE (02/10/2022, 15:14) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    Talk to the Smiths family at Cox Heath to lease or buy the land and make a start of the art horse racing and other facility.
    • Lilly (03/10/2022, 22:24) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      Are you suggesting that the landowning Smiths of the VI are pushovers with their
      land? I doubt it. They ,the current generation are worldly and educated. They won't fall for the bs.
      How about the Prospect Reef area ...if it is cleared off..all those rotting unused buildings.
  • Kez (02/10/2022, 15:34) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    when it comes to VI people there always some drama other folks gets wherever they ask for
    • Run fast.. (02/10/2022, 18:28) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
      This family is stress, drama and confusion. Run, stay far no one is asking to take their land away or to use their land for free, but what they are asking for is ridiculous...As for Frazer you have 6 more months to talk. Keep talking..
  • Land (02/10/2022, 19:52) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Than let the it's portion of Land to the horse/owner's for a small fee, and then let the horse/owners deal with the Land issues.!!!
  • Ans (02/10/2022, 20:45) Like (6) Dislike (1) Reply
    horse racing is a commercial venture not a public on, so no tax payer money should be spent on this. why is tax layer money being spent, oh hang in yes we all
    know why
  • 1 District (02/10/2022, 21:21) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
    Tell Fraser to shut the heckup'Gov can take your land and give you another piece once they want to use it, but it has to be done in a good way, because he from the 3 district why he is saying that we all going to dead leave the land anyways,you will have so much, and you can't carry none with you, no need to make noise for land now since we done take the vaccine we just need to live closer to God and stop the fighting for God sake.
    • Dulce (03/10/2022, 20:19) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      It is called generational wealth. A means to fulfill your purpose when you procreate. Rather than have your descendant knocking from pillar to post and looking demanding entitlement to scrap and being a a fr* g to mankind.
  • big show (03/10/2022, 07:28) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    Fraser stop making confusion you fully well know the law is there to support this decision when a country is developing you cannot allow greed to stop growth do you remember Conch Shell restaurant in Beef Island if you were a part of the government back then to get a decent run way it was done the country needs a horse track I personally think that place is too small they need go down Cox Heath and secure the land there so we can get an international track if we doing something let’s get it right for once let’s begin doing things for the future
    • @ big show (03/10/2022, 21:47) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      "...the country needs a racetrack.....""
      No it does not. It can find some other manner in which to support they and the drug dealers and the human traffickers.
  • Moesha (03/10/2022, 21:54) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Really. That same thing happened to my husband and I. Our land was taken from us in longlook by the NDP to build the Methodist Church parking lot and they give us a piece not for the same value we purchase ours for. Well we’ll we’ll. Because we are living abroad we had a lot of run around. The piece they give us is in the ghut. I’m very disappointed in Tortola Government.
  • WEW (04/10/2022, 12:42) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    How did Prospect Reef become government property ? Just took it and you see how that turned out. It looks lovely.
  • Hmm (04/10/2022, 14:54) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Why didnt u say this when u was a Vee Eye (Fulla) Pea. Yuh looking brownie points. Man i sicka all ayuh. Go siddung

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