Ministry claims vote will sink cruise port

| 26/09/2018 | 118 Comments
Cayman cruise, Cayman News Service

Cayman cruise ship passengers visit George Town

(CNS): Hours before Tourism Minister Moses Kirkconnell is set to host a public meeting in George Town about the government’s controversial cruise port project, the ministry is pushing back against the growing public demand for national vote on the proposal, claiming that a referendum, whatever the result, will curtail the entire project. In responses to debates on social media, ministry public relations officials are stating that the project is too far advanced to allow for a national ballot. But with more than 3,000 voters already signed up for a people-initiated referendum, as is their constitutional right, government may well be forced into the vote regardless.

In posts all over social media, government spokespeople are claiming that the funding arrangements forming part of the process “do not have an indefinite shelf life” and “holding a referendum at this stage would mean starting over with the process and finding new bidders.” They say that the work so far would then be wasted.

Despite the recent exposure that much of the limited information government has given to the public, along with the justification for the project, has been extremely misleading, it is still claiming that the project is in the best interests of the people.

Those opposing the project, however, are convinced that developing the berthing facility will serve only very limited interests while destroying the business interests of many wateresports and dive operators. It will also undermine the wider tourism brand in a multitude of ways, destroy a significant part of the environment and put untold pressures on local infrastructure.

But as government makes its opposition to a national ballot increasingly clear, it is claiming that it already has a mandate for the project as most of the members of the unity government campaigned ahead of the May 2017 general election for the port project.

However, Austin Harris campaigned adamantly against the project but recently made an about-face and is now wholly behind it. Also, the Government of National Unity was formed after several days of closed-door horse-trading due to an indecisive election result. Furthermore, the cruise project was rarely raised on the campaign trail, which was dominated at the time by the issues of local unemployment, economic challenges and falling education standards.

Nevertheless, the pro-port PR officials behind the ‘Support our Tourism’ Facebook page said, “The elected representatives are fulfilling the promises they made to the public when they ran for election in 2017.” They added that a referendum would see the current bidders pull out.

“The government is five years into this project and two years into the procurement process,” they said. “Delaying the process now will mean that the bidders willing to finance the project will not wait for an undetermined amount of time to see what the outcome of a referendum is. Their bids are not valid indefinitely and they could withdraw from the project entirely to invest elsewhere.”

The first public meeting to be hosted by the tourism ministry on the subject of the port in five years is set for 6:30pm on Wednesday night, when both sides of the debate are hoping for a large turn out.

Minister Kirkconnell has stuck to a number of talking points throughout the last five years to justify the project, but his claims are increasingly being challenged. For example, assertions that the future of the sector is all about mega ships has been completely undermined by the statistics supplied by the industry regarding the cruise ships that are due to be delivered or constructed over the next decade.

The claims that none of the larger ships will tender have also been debunked by the fact that many cruise lines are already doing so and others plan to tender larger ships. In addition, the minister’s claims that the original plans were redesigned to be environmentally friendly were put in doubt with the release of documentation at the LA meeting in Cayman Brac which revealed that the threats to the marine environment by the option selected remains significant.

The ministry’s own draft National Tourism Plan also raises serious questions about the impact of overcrowding in order to make the financing model. It indicates that the country’s environment, infrastructure, attractions and amenities, such as the beaches, are already not coping with the 1.7 million cruise passenger arrivals over the last two years.

The number of cruise passengers required to cover the costs of the cruise port is more than 2.4 million, and the ministry has not yet explained how they would overcome these apparently contradictory findings.

Given the significant economic, cultural, social and environmental threats posed by the project, the opposition is also going on the road next week, holding meetings in all districts in an effort to give out all the information the opposition and independent members have been able to gather and to persuade registered voters to sign the referendum petition.

The tourism’s meeting takes place tonight, Wednesday 26 September, at The Family Centre. Starts at 6:30pm.

See opposition meeting schedule on the CNS Notice Board

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Category: Business, development, Local News, Politics, Tourism

Comments (118)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Can anyone confirm the US$115 per passenger touted for cruise passengers is ON ISLAND spend?? First off, I love that they used US$ in Cayman to make the figure higher. Second off, I have US$115 bet that the figure INCLUDES the amount spent by cruise passengers ON BOARD the ships booking land excursions. As everyone knows, they mark these up dramatically and the mark up goes DIRECTLY to their pockets. Doesn’t even come ashore.

    Also, is this figure per passenger that came ashore??

    I am willing to bet that the actual figure spent onshore by passengers (ie the total onshore revenue per ship divided by the total number of passengers on the ship) doesn’t exceed CI$40…

    I stand to be corrected, but suspect if I posed the question directly to those touting the numbers, I would be standing for a VEEEERRRY long time…

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  2. David says:

    I want the Port Built, however I would rather not have it built if CHEC “China Harbour” is who the Govt choses to build it. So I will sign the Petition for that reason.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Has anyone noticed that the biggest supporters of the dock are the duty free stores and the rum and rum cake seller? Both of which bring no money to the CI Government…only to themselves?! Follow the money…????

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  4. Cruiseporter says:

    Hey MLAs, why not put the dock in the Brac? They need need the money, the Brac can handle the cruise business and we on the main land can look after the stay overs.

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  5. Anonymous says:

    If those wanting a referendum are ‘all expats’ who can’t vote in it, just why would having it worry the pro port group?

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  6. Anonymous says:

    It appears that those wanting a referendum (which could support or deny the port – it’s democratic) seem keen to ensure facts, reports and assessments are shared and yet those for the port (which only goes one way) seem hell bent on keeping facts, reports and assessments out of the public eye and instead rely on fear, insult and manipulation.

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    • Mike says:

      YES 11.09 am and the fact that they are fighting the possibility of a referendum tells us that they do not respect the wishes of the Caymanian people and seek to go ahead counter to popular opinion. Vert poor indeed. Bring on the referendum, an invaluable constitutional and democratic tool. This IS A DEMOCRACY is it not?

  7. Anonymous says:

    Kudoa to minister Kirkconnell and the panel last night. They answered every question. And left no stone unturned

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  8. Anonymous says:

    I say put it South Sound! ????

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  9. Anonymous says:

    What would happen to all the lovely expensive watches if there was a delay? Who is thinking about the watches? The lovely, expensive watches. Moses knows his watches.

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  10. Anonymous says:

    CNS, is there a transcript of the purported “facts” that were dished out yesterday? Time for some fact checking.

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  11. Anonymous says:

    Despite the recent exposure that much of the limited information government has given to the public …. they cant tell us whats going on, but want us not to vote it out!? THEN SHARE THE INFORMATION and stop hiding the DIRT you are doing.

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  12. Anonymous says:

    When logic and a sound business plan fail or do not exist always rely on fear to manipulate.

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  13. Always for Democracy says:

    How is allowing the people to have a say in the decision making of this country, holding back progress?

    I don’t get it.

    I see don’t see anything wrong in signing the Referendum. It is democracy at work.

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    • Ron Ebanks says:

      If that pier had been built that would’ve been one step forward a two steps backward , that’s not progress .

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    • Anonymous says:

      You know u live in Cayman right bobo?! what is this democracy u talk of?! I’ve got a set of plastic container cups to sell you if you dont think the big plan all along is coming to fruiiton for a very few…..

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    • Facto De Matta says:

      I’m not a supporter of cruise berthing, or the cruise industry in general. This referendum however, would achieve precisely nothing. None of the information being sought will become public as a result.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Quite the opposite. This is a people-initiated movement seeking transparency and honesty that is wholly absent. It will hopefully lead to long-differed enactment of Standards in Public Life Law and proper conflict checks already required of the territory by the FCO.

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  14. Anonymous says:

    So are we going to be treated like we’re under some North Korean dictatorship or are we going to get our human right to vote against what many locals deem a catastrophe by this government??

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  15. Anonymous says:

    After attending the cruise port meeting tonight it is more than clear that the group against the port is an extreme minority and mostly expats with a few Caymanians mixed in.

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    • J. Webster says:

      12:57 am, you are a liar!

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    • Anonymous says:

      After attending the cruise port meeting tonight it is more than clear that there is a large group of well-informed, intelligent and polite persons from all walks of Cayman life questioning the economics, environmental impacts and adherence to acceptable standards of this project.

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      • SSM345 says:

        That’s what scares the Govt.,they still think we all have our heads in the sand and will sit by the wayside like years gone by. Its the younger generations turn to call these old boys out on facts and basic commonsense which causes them huge discomfort because the truth hurts.

        The only thing their supporters can say is “Caymanian jobs are at stake” but that in itself is a fallacy and they are too stupid to see through the BS being promoted by the PPM. In fact, when Moses what asked what “Caymanians jobs” ;last night did he have an answer? No, he did not.

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    • Anonymous says:

      So why all the bull shit scare tactics to stop a referendum?

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    • Caymanite says:

      12:57 am. Get out of here, troll! We didn’t need a $300,000,000 dock in 1950 and we sure as hell don’t need one now!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Wrong. It’s more that only expats and outspoken Caymanians actually speak out because most Caymanians against the port don’t want to stick their necks out in this small community as being against something powerful politicians and commercial interests want to do. If I wasn’t a young attorney I would have been at the meeting asking very pointed questions. But I am and if I had done that, for every person who would have thought ‘brave of him, good questions too, glad we have smart young people coming up after us’, another 10 would think ‘brave but foolish, better him than me’. That’s the reality, you have to pull your punches if you work or move in certain circles. But I am Caymanian and against the port and I have hundreds of friends on Facebook against it too, and we will all be voting no in the referendum that we are going to have.

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    • Anonymous says:

      B.S.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Please, I was there last night. That’s not what I saw.

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    • CB4 says:

      You must have been at the wrong meeting!!

    • SSM345 says:

      Yeah 12:57, maybe Moses could tell us why he planned this meeting the night of Mark Luke’s service? Coincidence? I think not. Maybe you could ask the PPM to hurry up and build the Mental Health Facility because a lot of their supporters clearly drink too much kool-aid and need residency.

  16. nauticalone says:

    This weekends fear mongering by pro port group have encouraged me to sign for the referendum. All we wanted was regular clear verifiable information….not partisan BS!

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  17. Anonymous says:

    Really don’t give a crap how many likes or dislikes this will receive, but anyways, here it goes ????????. WAKE UP CAYMAN! We are now in 2018, not 1950.
    P.S yes we do need a new dock!????????????????

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  18. Ron Ebanks says:

    Praise God they have seen the light and the destruction the pier will cause .

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  19. I’M TAKING MY RIGHTFUL SEAT AT THE TABLE! says:

    This sounds like if you own your own home, have prudently made wise choices and amassed a small fortune in your savings account,

    then your family member who is supposed to be looking out for your best interest INVITES THREE PEOPLE INTO YOUR HOME to do a bid on a construction addition for your home,

    but then your family member has consistently refused to share the relevant details of the construction with you ABOUT YOUR OWN HOME WITH YOUR OWN MONEY,

    and then attempts to BLOCK YOU FROM YOUR RIGHTFUL SEAT AT THE TABLE?!

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  20. Anonymous says:

    I don’t like all the mud slinging, either way. However, in a modern country with good governance that is trying to show the world why we are responsible, honest and don’t need a public BO register, the closed nature of this process sets us back decades. A transparent referendum isn’t just about the port, it is also about showing we aren’t corrupt and we have no fear from an open process because we have done our homework. You have to question the motives of anyone who tries to oppose openness, on either side.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I was originally for a referendum but now that I’ve thought this thru I realise I’ve been duped. If this was not hatched by a hidden agenda it would have been initiated 5 years ago when this dock initiative commenced. It is only cooked up now as a last ditch effort to stop the building of the dock because the tender operators know it is their last hope for saving their monopoly. I will not be taken for an idiot. I’m not signing the petition.

      In fact, I wish there was a petition I could sign to support the dock.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Liar, liar…

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      • Anonymous says:

        There has been sustained and widespread opposition that these same ministers have dismissed all the way along. The previous years of ignoring people was why PPM was resoundingly NOT returned to office at polls in 2017.

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      • Anonymous says:

        *BEEEP BEEEP* Waring! Warning! Kirkbot detected. Now launching McAfee Anti-Kirkbot protection.

      • Anonymous says:

        By signing the petition for a referendum, you are in fact voting for the vehicle where you can categorically support a new dock, with a yes vote.

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      • CB4 says:

        Youre an idiot. The petition allows you to vote FOR or against the dock. What part of that do you not understand yet??

      • Anonymous says:

        It was. It always has been. And the people are always ignored. Hopefully this time their voices can be heard. Bring on the referendum.

  21. Debbie does Dullards says:

    Build the piers now. The Kirkconnels have nothing to do with the big picture.
    Do you people not understand that the Govt will receive money to finance your Govt with each person getting off the ships. The Govt needs money for
    The dump
    Education
    Police
    Fire
    Infrastructure on and on.
    You people seem to think the Govt grows money on birch and thatch trees!!
    No way. Grow up and accept that the pier is going in. It is the twenty first century folks.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Lovely poem full of BS

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    • Anonymous says:

      Doesn’t the Government GIVE UP at least $200m of revenue to even get the piers built? Doesn’t that mean we’d need to have an EXTRA 3.3m visitors just to cover the cost? Isn’t that an EXTRA 660 mega-ships if EVERYBODY disembarked from their floating theme park with free food and entertainment?

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    • Ron Ebanks says:

      7:58 pm , sounds like you want to be the whole PPM party talking like that . Not saying that there’s not a need for more money for the things mentioned . If the pier had been built , it would have created more revenue for a few certain people than government, and destroyed the lively hood of a lot more people including yourself ,unless you are a Doctor . I think that it’s funny that Moses can see things about the pier project today , that he didn’t see two years ago , maybe other people will see them tomorrow .

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    • Anonymous says:

      Delusions of grandeur cannot win over reason. The best case scenario pitched so far is that “we” receive nothing for 25 years. Last year’s record arrivals brought in $3mln (per CI Port and Budget notes), 25x$3mln is $75mln…not even halfway to paying back the current “best estimate” of cost on this un-insurable blue water engineering marvel, and no consideration for ongoing dredge operations, Harbour masters, port staffing, etc etc. Btw: those are all debits, not credits.

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    • Anonymous says:

      What do they call a female troll? A trollet? A shillet? Get lost, Debbie does Dullards!

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    • Jotnar says:

      Except they give the head taxes to the developer – so the government doesn’t receive any money for 25 years. If you cannot even grasp the basic facts of how this is going to be paid for, maybe you should just stay quiet rather than make yourself look like – well, a dullard.

  22. Anonymous says:

    I become deeply concerned when a coalition Government says “trust us, we know best, we act for you, even though you didn’t have the confidence in us to give us a majority, and you, the people, having a say is not in your own best interests even though we intend to wholly change the future of you all and potentially give you an economic liability for decades and generations”. Feels almost North Korean…

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  23. “Too far advanced” says:

    “In responses to debates on social media, ministry public relations officials are stating that the project is too far advanced to allow for a national ballot.”

    Because how many pilings have been completely constructed so far?

    ZERO! So you share with us the public all the relevant information!

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    • Anonymous says:

      This I do not buy one bit. Not after listening to that presentation talking about how they inserted a special stage in the process to do an environmental impact assessment based on a template design. Not after seeing vice presidents from Carnival and Royal Caribbean there at the meeting. Not knowing the major bidders have been after this project for the best part of a decade. They can wait a bit longer to have the people’s permission!

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  24. Anonymous says:

    Fundamentally, someone like Kirkconnell, with all his many family conflicts, should be nowhere near any of this. His starring role in secret negotiations, tells you everything you need to know about conflicts in the CI Government.

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    • Anonymous says:

      The Minister has no conflicts. He has made all of his business information public. And all dealings have followed protocol and been managed by the Chief Officer in charge. You really lower yourself to make such dishonest allegations.

      I personally admire the man. He has nothing to gain yet he is enduring personal attacks because he is willing to fight for jobs and an economic growth for our children.

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      • Jotnar says:

        In my job when members of your family have economic interests it is deemed a conflict, even if you personally do not. If he were the saint you think he is why does he not recuse himself from the issue and let it be handled by another minister? That would put his integrity beyond question, and if the business case for doing the project is as obvious as he says it is why does it matter who heads up the pro port effort from government?

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        • Anonymous says:

          Moses and the local Kirkconnells are distant cousins with no common business interests. Imagine if our Grand Cayman politicians had to consider all distant cousin’s business interests a conflict due to a common last name. Bush, Ebanks, Miller, McLean, etc. Absolutely nothing would get accomplished.

      • Anonymous says:

        And there you have one of the great problems with Absurdistan. That atttiude. Somehow if a government official declares a conflict then they can push on.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Presumably then he’ll be perfectly happy to subject such a monumental project that affects the whole island and especially the environment to an open democratic process.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Renaming Gerrard Smith Airport after a family member, is the very definition of conflict. Cousin Gerry Kirkconnell, who was also deputy chair of the Port Authority Board is the managing director of the family business Kirk Freeport. His son, Chris Kirkconnell, was a leading spokesperson in the pro-port campaign. This is old news.

        Almost three-quarters of the respondents who took part in the public consultation on the proposal for the cruise facility were not in support but supporters for the project came mostly from staff working for the Kirkconnells. From 473 direct responses to the survey, only 111 individuals were in favour and around 80 of those said they were connected to Kirk Freeport.

        There’s the family’s Kirk Freight Line – one of the Caribbean’s leading shipping companies for 100 years, repackaged as Seaboard Marine, or the appointment of AL Thompson to CI Port Board, not only a thoroughly conflicted member of his Cabinet’s Dept of Planning, but also in the cargo shipping business.

        He is also one of the Cabinet members that refuses to enact the Standards in Public Life Law (2014), which would oblige a very rudimentary check on family finances for possible corrupt payments and conflicts. He most certainly has not agreed to this.

        It’s hard to imagine anyone on these islands being more ethically conflicted than Moses.

        CNS: I believe the Brac airport was renamed by McKeeva Bush when he was premier.

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  25. Anonymous says:

    How does one vote for the referendum? Is there a link or a place where a registered voter can go to vote?

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  26. Anonymous says:

    Trust me when I tell you that the ‘wealthy’ tourists do NOT keep visiting places that are overrun with cruise shippers and other tourists. Why would they when they can go to quieter places and not have to fight our daytime traffic

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  27. Can’t hear nothing about the third bidder says:

    “They added that a referendum would see the current bidders pull out.”

    If we the people cannot have full transparency about the largest capital project in the history of the Cayman Islands, then by all means pull out, China.

    With last week’s United States threatened economic sanctions against China, it wouldn’t take much for the Pentagon to order one of their military satellites pointed directly at the Cayman Islands if we ever give control over our Port to China, who America lists as an enemy of the State.

    And don’t worry, Dart.

    Even though you might threaten to pull out of the Port deal, your Cayman Islands Government-bed buddies still want you to purchase Cayman’s $312 million government bond due next November, 2019 even though you toppled Argentina and Greece when their respective government’s failed to pay you back when you bought their government bonds also.

    Begs to question about the third bidder who you can’t hear nothing about, because it looks like all #3 has to do is just sit tight and let these two self-destruct!

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  28. Guy Fawkes says:

    The people should NOT fear its government. The government SHOULD FEAR ITS PEOPLE. Keep up the pressure!

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  29. Anonymous says:

    On August 28th following the arrests of activists, the Supreme Court of India made the warning that:
    “ Dissent is the safety-valve of democracy. If it is not the pressure cooker will burst.”

    So will the pressure cooker burst with what the Government want to do with the dock and we are led down an undemocratic path. The last time we voted it was not for any dictatorship. So what will it be now? Will the voice of the people finally be heard?

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  30. Anonymous says:

    Moses and his scare tactics again. You are either very devious and or you have lots of little minions working overtime for you.

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  31. Stop the madness says:

    The Unity government and Kirkbots fear a people’s initiated referendum. Therefore they will lie, embellish the facts and do whatever it takes to stop the public from asking questions and holding the elected government accountable. They cannot afford to be honest and transparent there are too many piglets in the trough to feed. This is about big business promises have been made to CHEC and the cruise lines.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I think it’s more CHEC than the cruise lines. The cruise lines couldn’t care less but CHEC on the other hand would love to get a foot hold in Cayman like they did in Jamaica and other Caribbean countries. As for the too many piglets in the trough? More like one big pig from the west and a bunch of piggy wannabe’s.

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  32. Anonymous says:

    Kirk needs to “deliver” its message about this project. It is strengthening.

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  33. Anonymous says:

    Please just get CHEC & Decco going and build the port. We do not need any referendum from all these wanna be people. Our Unity Team leaders know what is right for this country.

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  34. Anonymous says:

    Looks to me like the post and the other responses are saying that if there is a pause for however long it will take for a referendum, then the current deal is dead. If this deal is dead and the cruise arrivals continue to decrease, as they were last year before Cayman benefited from disastrous hurricanes elsewhere in the Caribbean, then it might be too late to continue to build cruise tourism. this is the opportunity cost of putting the brakes on, right near the end of the process. Everything else stops too.

    The discussion about a port has been going on for as long as I can remember – I am guessing 20 years! this is the first time that a deal could be worked out that provides the port, builds tourism, builds the economy and creates opportunities for the future. It will be quite sad if this all goes away because someone wanted to vote in a referendum to say that they wanted the port after all.

    Every decision has a repercussion and no one has a crystal ball – the only thing that can be done is to make decisions based on the very best information that we can get our hands on and I think the Government has done just that

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    • Anonymous says:

      Then we redouble and focus on a source of even better tourism money. The over night stayers.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Let’s not forget stay-overs sometimes start as cruisers. If cruisers have an unpleasant, overcrowded, bad-value experience, they won’t fly down for another week of that same experience. Stay-over is sustainable and more profitable, I can’t understand no matter how much I think about it, WHY anyone wants to bring thousands and thousands more cruise tourists here. I work in town and I see them walking in and out of shops empty-handed and unimpressed. People don’t buy blingy jewellery anymore: they want to see something historic, interesting, unique, that is in keeping with 21st century modern values. They would rather look at the well discovered during construction of Bayshore Mall than go into Bayshore Mall itself (except for the air conditoning – which reminds me, did anybody suggest Kirk Freeport stop air conditioning the whole world as a way to be more profitable, instead of destroying the harbour?) Honestly, this port is nonsense. Nothing about it adds up. I’m looking forward to tonight’s meeting.

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    • Anonymous says:

      3:07 Grand Cayman is already dying on its feet as a cruise destination. Spend a few minutes looking at the cruise itineraries for this region and you can clearly see the shift. Simple fact – the cruise lines earn a lot more money when their floating resorts are at sea than they do making needless diversions to drop off passengers for 5-6 hours ashore.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Exactly. Like the VP from Carnival said last night, they order ships, and then work out “where those ships are going to go”. They don’t put together cool itineraries and then build ships that can make those journeys. The stops are just there to add flavour to the trip, give it structure with regular opportunities to restock, refuel, deal with medical emergencies etc., and sell overpriced excursions. If they could, they would just anchor the ship somewhere for the whole duration, but that would be boring. I did a Western Caribbean cruise (which stopped in Cayman by the way) and all I ever wanted to do when onshore was get back on the ship where most things were free, there was air conditioning, and everyone spoke English! Curiously I felt this way whether we tendered or not!

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    • Anonymous says:

      We had record cruise arrivals even before the misfortunes east of us.

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    • Thomas Bodden says:

      Anonymous 3:07, You are full of it! Who is telling you what to say? Your pap is ridiculous. Any thinking person knows that we DO NOT need a $300,000,000 dock that we can’t pay for. And just between us thinking folks, we don’t have the roads and sidewalks for that many tourists. You know it, I know it, and everyone who has been part of the gridlock knows it. We, and I’m talking about Caymanians, DO NOT want to lose our beautiful waters and our underwater sea life…. including corals and fishes. When that happens the visitors will not come back. Then what?????

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    • Anonymous says:

      “Discussion” and “Information” are two different things. We might have had a lot of the first, but none of the latter. Because cliches, platitudes and “alternative facts” as in the 3 pages of the Compass from the Minister do not equal “information” either.

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  35. Anonymous says:

    The mandate from Jon Jon was also to put a moratorium on work permits – hows that coming? He IS part of the Govt right?

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  36. Anonymous says:

    Five years of closed-door public exclusion have led us here. The dismissal of public consultation plus the weight of cautionary impact reports are exactly why this needs to be paused long enough for a full disclosure period, enactment of PEP disclosure laws (arrests if necessary), and a public Referendum. It’s clearly the disclosure part that these kleptocrats are panicking about. No credible investor contemplating a multi-hundred million dollar infrastructure project would balk at getting the public onboard…that’s a normal part of these deals. Clearly our politicians have given them a blank sheet do whatever they want. Panic mode!

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  37. Anonymous says:

    There is something fundamentally wrong with the government’s statement that the bidders will back out. All along they have said how this is such a sweet deal for all concerned where everyone is a winner. So why would they want to pull out before knowing the results of a referendum? What is that smell? Ah yes, pure uncut BS!!

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    • Anonymous says:

      A sweet deal alright.. for the politicians and a few business owning families but sure as hell not the average Joe on the street. If it is such sweet deal as they proclaim, share the details with us, let the people exactly see how much benefit is coming their way.

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  38. Anonymous says:

    Where can the call for a referendum document be signed? I am a registered voter who wants the information regarding the port to be released before I say whether I would be in favor or not.

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    • Anonymous says:

      The CIG will never give out real information about the project because they know if they did it would undermine their support so good luck on that, hope you are not holding your breath. They are afraid of the people’s reaction and as such is keeping it all under wraps. This is why I voted for the referendum. I want to know more than is being told before I support $300 million being spent on something we won’t control for minimum 25 years if we’re lucky.

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    • Anonymous says:

      It is available for signing at pure art gallery. It will be available until octobet first

    • nauticalone says:

      You can sign it at Cathy Church’s / Pure Art on South Church St.

  39. Anonymous says:

    Good!

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    1
  40. Anonymous says:

    And where are the cruise lines in this debate? We’ve heard absolutely zip from them.

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  41. Anonymous says:

    This is the reason why the tender owners Briggs and bodden are so behind the petition

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    • Anonymous says:

      They are two multi-generational Caymanians who have invested and provided jobs in many areas of the economy…I honestly don’t believe that if they were to shut down the tenders altogether, which they can’t as there will only be two piers, so the other ships will still need to tender particularly if one of the Cruise Ship company’s own the piers.

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      • Anonymous says:

        They might (I have no idea) decide that its too expensive to run the operation for just the overflow ships. Remember that two piers = 4 ships (depending on size, etc.) so many days there would be no work for the tenders. As a business that’s a challenging position to be in. (My guess is CIG will have to negotiate a subsidy w/ the tenders to keep the requisite equipment & personnel available for when it is needed. But, again, not something I know anything about.)

    • Anonymous says:

      While we are presenting our theories (of which you conveniently have no proof), there is actual proof that the Kirkconnells by way of Kirk Freeport are involved with and likely financing the pro-port Facebook group “Cayman’s Port, Cayman’s Future”
      The vice president of Kirk Freeport literally spoke for the group in last week’s Friday Compass
      https://www.caymancompass.com/2018/09/20/community-groups-battle-for-hearts-and-minds-in-port-debate/

      So while you claim (again with no proof), that this group opposing the port is being funding by those involved in tendering, we have actual proof that the pro port lobby is simply made up of Kirk Freeport high ups and employees looking for their cut of the duty free sales

      – One only has to look at the public commenting period, in which the vast majority of the support came from persons who self identified as working or being involved in “Kirk Freeport”

      https://cnslibrary.com/wp-content/uploads/Cruise-port-facility-Response-to-Public-Comments-September-2015.pdf

      Anyone real Caymanian who thinks this dock is going to benefit them in their day to day lives is mistaken

      Unless your last name is Kirkconnell or unless you are getting a commission from duty free sales, you won’t see a dime from this project

      I personally would love to see where the PPM is getting their funding for campaigns and candidates from however
      Make no mistake the PPM is trying to line their pockets as well, where do you think they get 500,000 dollars to waste on generic, no name candidates

      Support the petition, vote against the port in the referendum, and demand your MLA support putting the Standards in Public Life Law into effect along with supporting serious campaign finance reform

      *Re posting this here because clearly this is the same person*

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    • Anonymous says:

      Is it a coincidence that the Kirkconnells no doubt make generous donations to the PPM between elections and the PPM conveniently manages to claw their way back into power and happen to favor a project almost as large as the annual government budget just to support their businesses

      In other jurisdictions it might be corruption, here its just another day in Cayman
      Where the rich are taken care of and the poor are ignored

      And anyone who dares point it out is a political wannabe or trying to line their own pockets

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