|Advisory Council Wrapup|
|Thursday, 15 July 2010 09:37|
Gov’t Provo primary schools face placement shortages
Officials from the Ministry of Education projected a shortage of primary school places on the island of Providenciales for the upcoming school year during an update on registration of new entrants to government schools before the Advisory Council.
The council mandated that the Ministries of Education, Finance, and the EMS to find a solution to the shortfall in time for the reopening of school in September. The council requested an interim progress report by the end of July.
The council further instructed that another working group representing the Ministries of Education and Finance, EMS and the Immigration Department be established to develop policies aimed at providing medium-term solutions to the space shortage problem.
The group will look at finance and accommodation, but also any potential for managing numbers through adjustments to, and/or the enforcement of, the current immigration and work permit policy.
University scholarship program to be reviewed
At last week’s Advisory Council meeting, members commissioned a comprehensive audit of the university scholarship programme.
After discussing the operation of the scheme, members concluded that there was a need for a fresh look at how the scholarship scheme operates. The group requested the audit to ensure that the process is fair, transparent and delivers value for money.
National Stadium land solution to be sought
The Ministry of Education and the Attorney General’s office were directed by the Advisory Council to meet with the Turks and Caicos Education Foundation to seek a lasting solution to long standing problems arising from the government-funded National Stadium having been constructed on land that is not owned by government.
TCInvest to administer business licenses
In supporting the refocusing of the TCI Investment Agency as a one-stop shop for investors, the Advisory Council considered proposals to improve the business licensing process, including the transfer of its policy, monitoring and administration elements to the Ministry of Trade Tourism and Communications.
Council also accepted recommendations to amend, clarify and simplify encouragement of development policy, including, removing the ability of government to grant up to 35-year exemptions from customs duties and other taxes; clarifying the basis on which financial assistance from government may be contemplated and made available on a case by case basis; and ensuring the decision making process is evidence based, auditable and consistently applied.
Money laundering law revised to meet standards
A revision to anti-money laundering regulations presented to Council by the attorney general was considered and approved.
According to a statement from the governor’s office, the revised regulations are designed to ensure that the Turks and Caicos Islands meet current standards in the regional and international effort to prevent money laundering.
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