Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, says the town of Falmouth has an economic value, and ways can be found to market it as a tourist attraction.
Mr. Holness added that the town is an invaluable asset that is also blessed with a great deal of historical value.
The Prime Minister, who was speaking at a function dubbed, an ‘Evening of Excellence’, in Falmouth, on April 27, said it is for a very good reason the town has been aptly described as one of the “best preserved Victorian-style towns in the western hemisphere”.
“This town had running water and electricity before many First-World cities. There are not many places in the Caribbean that have this architectural kind of value. People travel from all over the world to come and see these (sites),” he said.
The Prime Minister emphasised that whatever is done, “we have to ensure that the people of Falmouth will indeed benefit”.
“One of the things we also want to ensure is that a process is started to preserve the Georgian-styled buildings that are here in the town. The other thing we have to do is to ensure that the municipal services, like the court house, have a permanent home,” he added.
Mr. Holness said this is to also ensure that the people have easy access to the Government offices where quality services are provided in a timely and efficient manner.
“This has to be done to ensure that the people are properly served and are able to access these services quite easily,” he stressed.
Meanwhile, Mr. Holness said that while he will readily concede that the property tax issue is “a vexed issue”, he wants to be on record as saying that whatever taxes the Government collects via property taxes, “the people of the country must visibly see and feel its use”.
“I hope you have been listening to the Minister of Local Government and Community Development, when he said we are going to bring in new garbage trucks,” the Prime Minister said.
“That is your property tax at work, and we are going to ensure that one is assigned here in Falmouth. We have been bringing in new garbage trucks, because we recognise that for the cities and townships to realise their true value as tourist destinations, like the town of Falmouth, they must be clean,” he said.
Mr. Holness added that the Trelawny Parish Council must be lauded for the manner in which it deals with waste disposal, and he is confident they will continue to maintain the kind of discipline that will make Falmouth a destination of choice going forward.