Why Are Parking Spaces Being Taken Away?

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Editor:

I have been noticing that our incredibly limited Cruz Bay public parking spaces are being occupied recently by more small vendors as season approaches both at the vehicle inspection lane as well as the Nature’s parking lot. Why is this happening?

Furthermore, I have always wanted to know the process in obtaining these key business “spots.” Look around Cruz Bay and you will note that numerous local Jeep rental companies have rented these spaces through the Port Authority. Count them. Also note the problems in guests parking on the streets as well as the blocking of traffic as these Jeep rentals come in and out of their tight spaces.

As a tax-paying citizen, I would like to know what rents they are paying, and the leases that they have obtained.

If we are so interested in bringing in more monies for our much-needed upgraded infrastructure, let’s begin by leasing out prime land in Cruz Bay for the going rate — not to special interest groups or perhaps as favors for a pittance, especially if it is going to put the citizens and our guests in the exasperating position of continual traffic congestion and musical chairs game of “Who Can Find a Parking Spot?”

Why should I be able to access this information? Because it is my business; I live here and pay taxes for such things.

It seems to me that someone in St. Thomas in the Port Authority — possibly once again someone without the understanding of our town’s congestion as well as exasperation that St. Johnians are put through on a daily basis searching for a parking spot to do basic business — is renting these spots out without recognizing the serious issues on St. John.

Once again, this points to the basic need of a more localized government on each island. I certainly hope that our Constitutional delegates recognize the important need for citizens on each island having more autonomy in solving its unique problems.

I believe that our Crucian brothers and sisters feel the same way. Centralized government on St. Thomas is meeting neither of our basic needs.

May I also add that I would like to see much more transparency in our government with more accountability to the people who pay taxes and who are supposed to run things.

It may very well be that the few “in control” on St. John for such a long time continue to be the ones handing out preferential treatment to businesses and individuals. This is unfair and ultimately hurts us all.

I hope that our present deJongh Administration, which I believe is doing a great job, continues to “chip through” the years and layers of how things were done because of the limited St. John representation and move us towards a more fair and democratic manner of doing business in our islands.

Until then, why are we losing all of these limited parking spaces as season approaches?

Bonny Corbeil