CITY Councillor, Shonelle Smith-Daniels, said it is a challenge to deal with administrative officers at the Mayor and City Council (M&CC), but noted that efforts are being made to fix the problem with those who are especially guilty of non-cooperation.
“There’s been a change because it is now a young, vibrant group of councillors,” she observed during an interview with this publication on Thursday, but noted that there is “still a lot that needs to be done in terms of the administration”.
The Constituency Nine (Lodge/Meadow Brook) Councillor said the administrative staff has been employed with the City Council for so long that they have become complacent.
“So it’s a challenge dealing with them. It’s no longer their job that you’re asking them to do. If you ask them to do something, it’s like a whole task, something out of their league. But it’s because they haven’t been doing it for so long.”
Smith-Daniels called for the administration to get more serious. “This is about the citizens of Georgetown. We have a serious problem in the Engineers Department for instance. It’s a big problem and we have to start dealing with these problems. I don’t think they realise that they are not there for them. Everybody seems to think they will go make their money and then go home. But if you don’t like your job, then leave,” she said.
She referred to the no-confidence motion that was recently passed against Chief Constable Andrew Foo. “He is not the only person who is not working. He is not working. It’s just ridiculous and I don’t want to get into it.”
As for the Engineer’s Department, she said a process has already been started by councillors to fix the issues there. “We are actually starting to get that fixed. There’s always one person…. and it has a ripple effect, and that’s where the complacency, incompetence, everything come out.”
Meanwhile, over the past few months, the City Council has been criticised for not coming up with or executing any new, original projects.
“I don’t agree with this. Take the garbage situation for example. We negotiated with the contractors and got them to break that price down by half. For people to say we are not doing anything; that’s not true. That’s totally untrue.”
Recently, the councillor noted that the Ministries of Communities and Public Infrastructure have been coming on board with the City Council to assist with several projects.
“We’re seeing things are happening,” she said, noting that in her community, a lot of progress has been made with the South Alley project. “South Alley has been there before I was born. Mostly children traverse that alleyway now but when it rains, it would flood. We are now having it paved,” she reported.
She said this is something that the residents had wanted for a long time, and that when the paving is completed, they will work on installing lights.