Dump project slows but not dead yet

| 08/10/2021 | 94 Comments
Cayman News Service
George Town landfill (File photo courtesy CIFS)

(CNS): The PACT Government has said that the dump deal signed by the previous administration with the Dart Group had left a number of conditions outstanding, many of which were unaddressed due to the complexity of the project. Following allegations made by the opposition that PACT had allowed the ReGen agreement to lapse, Premier Wayne Panton issued a statement Friday afternoon which revealed that he is taking responsibility for the project and that the date set when the Unity government signed the deal was premature.

“Having recently received a more detailed briefing regarding the project, I am of the view that the six month timeline that was agreed previously was, at best, an ambitious target,” Panton said.

“The details of the outstanding conditions precedent are obviously not something that can be shared, as the negotiations have not been concluded; however I believe it is sufficient to note that there are a number of conditions precedent that were outstanding at the time of the project agreement signing, several of which remain outstanding currently and their complexity reflects the complexity of the project.”

On Tuesday the opposition had called on PACT to reveal what was happening with the deal, implying that, having passed the 30 September deadline to agree the financial details, the deal may have collapsed. Opposition Leader Roy McTaggart noted the PACT Government’s failure to mention the project at all since coming to office and its absence from the new government’s policy platform set out in the Strategic Policy Statement.

In his first public statement about the proposed project, Panton revealed that, as minister for sustainability, he was best placed to deal with it in future, leaving the health minister to focus on the current pandemic and allow him and his chief officer, Jennifer Ahearn, who is already familiar with the project, to ensure the intended sustainability benefits.

But Panton said very little about the current status and nothing about the claims by the opposition leader that missing the deadline date in the agreement could cost the public purse millions of dollars.

Panton said the passing of the deadline did not mean the project was dead. “The project will continue as the project team continues to progress strategic elements of the project, including the Environmental Impact Assessment and capping the main mound at the George Town Landfill,” the premier stated.

Panton assured the people of the Cayman Islands that the project will continue. The passing of the 30 September deadline without satisfying the conditions does not mean that the project is dead but rather that government has “not rushed blindly” to sign off on it.

“This project is simply far too important, in addition to being very complex, to make
any hasty or half-informed decisions,” he added.

He pointed out that government has had to deal with a number of issues since being elected and this has led to a “triage type of approach”, with greater focus on issues that were both critically urgent and important. Government is also seeking to focus on sustainability, which requires a review to ensure the project is consistent with that objective.

Panton said he wanted to assure everyone that PACT would strive to deliver an integrated solid waste management system that achieves a sustainable balance of people, planet and profits.

Meanwhile, the president for development, delivery and infrastructure at Dart, Cameron Graham, who has represented the company on this issue, said ReGen will deliver a number of sustainability benefits for the country, from reducing greenhouse gas emissions to improving recycling performance and diverting up to 95% of our waste from being landfilled.

See Panton’s statement and McTaggart’s letter about the project in the CNS Library.

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Category: Environmental Health, Health

Comments (94)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Stalled? Why? Because Government entered this project without defining the full scope – probably because they had NO ONE who understood it! Bear in mind that Ms. Ahearn was the pertinent CO when the discussions were being held/arrangements being made between CIG and Dart. So, if she didn’t have the expertise to understand and fully define the project then, what gives her the expertise now? Having a knowledge of meetings and documents does not make one an expert!

    Just another Government screw-up because of lack of in-house expertise, Dart is not required to provide experts on the side of the contractee (CIG) – only on the part of the contractor. But any contractor will only perform the services required under contract. If the contract fell short on accuracy and detail, that is Government’s fault. No surprise – check out the recent CIAA airport re-development in relation to contractual deficiencies and millions of extra public funds spent for change orders!!

    Morons in charge – still!!

  2. Anonymous says:

    What we are missing is that the eastward water treatment/human sewage ponds remain an odorous real estate impairment for DART whether the dump is addressed or not. DART knows this, so are pushing for further cash incentives, which may include importation of other people’s trash for incineration, and with increased toxic fly ash output, and long term disposal issues, that they’d rather not discuss.

    Meanwhile, watch as the entire Lacovia condo complex is trucked and piled on top in the next few weeks. Every time we tear down a building, that’s also where it goes. 80% of municipal waste is unmonitored or sorted construction garbage.

    • Anonymous says:

      Are they paying a hefty fee for disposing demolition debris? Is anything being sold, donated, reused?

    • Anonymous says:

      Agreed, as we tear down 7MB it will just get piled on top of Mt Trashmore.

    • Anonymous says:

      So true. And, if we import waste from other jurisdictions, how can we be sure that it is not tainted with highly toxic and poisonous substances — even nuclear activity substances?

  3. Anonymous says:

    Time to dump PACT.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Bravo 👏. Thank god we can rethink this project just like we stalled the country from the debt ridden cruise piers idea. A waste to energy plant that needs volumes of rubbish based on volumes of inhabitants and visitors all adding to our current air emissions. Not exactly a good plan right now…or perhaps ever.

  5. Anonymous says:

    PACT has really been showing themselves to be no different than the PPM. Get it together! Caymanians and expats alike are done being played!

  6. Anonymous says:

    This is an extremely complex project with an astronomical cost. Dart knows that to do it RIGHT, hundreds millions need to be spent in the first phase, and about that much if not more to maintain, monitor, regular inspections, etc. And I am talking only about the existing Dump.

    CIG wants to have it fixed FAST at the lowest cost possible, which means skipping many phases, or cutting corners which would compromise the most important aspect of the finished project – public SAFETY which won’t be guaranteed if not done properly.

    • Anonymous says:

      No- Dart want it done with the minimum disruption to their other properties , even if that means that hazardous waste stays in the ground polluting the ground water.

      • Anon says:

        Do you not think that doing it right is the best way to have minimal impact to their other hospitality properties? It’s in the best interest for both CIG and Dart to push through a permanent and lasting solution. As far as the buried hazardous waste, there is a purpose for the landfill cap. The rainwater that usually penetrates this layer and spreads dangerous chemical toxins into the groundwater supply will now be directed away from the waste by the cap, and minimize any polluting effect from buried waste. This is why you go to public meetings and learn.

      • Anonymous says:

        Except that the terms of reference were established by CIG…Dart simply bid on what was being asked for.

      • Anonymous says:

        I know everyone loves to bash Uncle Ken, but really just consider for one minute that he lives here, his family lives here. He does not want hazardous waste in the ground as much as Betty Ebanks does not. So unless you actually have inside information, this is the best approach and it’s ridiculous that it’s stalled when it was actually starting to progress from the eyesore

        • Anonymous says:

          I think you misunderstood the comment. Dart doesn’t want to pay for everything, it cost too much. CIG on the other hand want to him to pay for everything.

    • Anonymous says:

      DART do not execute well, with quality, or on time, and have no special expertise to sell. For now, their group is viewed as having bottomless chests of money. That’s what they offered previous regimes in exchange for CIG freebies. Maintenance on what they do purchase or build is slap-dab at best, and when their limited attention span is taxed, properties fall apart, and smashed by waves and left to collapse, or are reclaimed by the jungle, for us to watch in stunned amazement. Their revolving door of employees demonstrates that their own high-handed culture is toxic and corrosive, and with little project continuity as a consequence. Eventually their organisations will abuse and chew through everyone eligible that might have helped them with their expertise gap. What then? No amount of money can pave over their internal struggles retaining their best people, or their now very public external conflicts with Caymanian that are trying to continue about their rightful lives in peace. It’s not a secret that DART are bad actors on the best of days, and we have the headlines to prove it.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Pact is turning into an ,expensive ,time delaying ,useless exercise…. So far they achieved nothing and I tout they will ….. to many simpletons in power thinking about their own little promise they had to make to get there…… as much as I like Wayne and Chris we should have known by the time they added the same old faces to their ranks and now the same old faces to their boards …… nothing good will come of it.

  8. Anonymous says:

    So the PACT government doesn’t like this deal because it wasn’t theirs, same as the COVID plan. PACT wants the dump out of GT and put in Bodden Town.

    • Harley45 says:

      Meanwhile all the paper & cardboard recycling bins at Camana Bay and Kirk s/m were completely full with lids hinged back ready for rain. I closed the lids but these areas should be covered. #WeRecycle

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes, that would be a good resolution.

    • Anonymous says:

      Never in BT.

      Several will pay with their seats if they try that.

      • Anonymous says:

        It’s an underground state of the art waste management facility not a landfill. It doesn’t matter where it goes. Borden town is better than where the dump is now

        • Anonymous says:

          Get away from here talking rubbish.

          It would be a landfill in Bodden Town, plain and simple!

        • Anonymous says:

          If it doesn’t matter where it goes then why does it matter that it doesn’t stay where it is?

    • Anonymous says:

      When you have career civil servants negotiating deals with the private sector, Cayman will always lose because ….

      Civil servants have no business savvy.
      They’ve never had to “make money”.
      They are not using their own money.
      They are not accountable in case of failure.
      If a deal fails or succeeds makes no difference.
      Time ,for civil servants ,is of no consequence.

      So again, who is representing CIG in these negotiations with Dart …? Career civil servant (ex planning department).

  9. Anonymous says:

    here is the truth.
    do-nothing-ppm sat on their hands for 8 years and then rushed some nonsense agreement through before the election to try and fool the people.
    ppm turned down the free solution years ago for the sake of a few votes in bodden town.
    sad thing is pact will be just as incompetent in dealing with this.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Dart thinks they are going to take advantage of Cayman by fixing our three-decade problem, but we know the value of our trash and we’re not going to let them!

    • d'Artagnan says:

      I don’t know how many of our new electorate are in Dart’s pocket………… but it seems we may be about to find out. Money talks, you know!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      So, you have had a solution for the past 20 yrs??? Please enlighten us.

    • Anonymous says:

      Dart is saving your ass from typical Caymanian disfunction and you hate him for it. We understand. Dart will take over Cayman when the recession hits then it will truly be a Paradise for people who work for a living. Finally. We understand that you will hate us for it but it is a small price to pay.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Regen or renege? Corne see how much this PACT cockup will cost us in the end.

  12. Anonymous says:

    That’s rich. Roy McTaggart, as CFO of Cayman the previous two terms, admitted he wasn’t keeping any track of any duty and stamp concessions to DART’s labyrinths of nominee companies. They certainly weren’t keeping track of PPM’s own prescribed deadlines from the NRA agreement signed in 2016. What happened to the Sunrise Learning Center and Adult Vocational Schools Roy?

    • Anonymous says:

      Since Alden & Roy are so up on top of things, do you think they could do something about the so called park in Red Bay? Here we are in October yet the two roofs that fell down during tropical storm Grace still are laying there untouched and the place is a total mess with weeds grown up, rocks & dirt all over. You think Alden would at least get the dam place cleaned up since he is the Red Bay member for parliament!

      • Anonymous says:

        What for, he won’t gain any feathers in his cap for cleaning up his reelection mess! Leave till next election so he can get some good press for it.

  13. Anonymous says:

    CIG needs to recalibrate the public’s relationship with this rogue developer. We, need to revisit and renegotiate all of the bad faith clauses and retraction date “gotchas” from past deals, including the NRA deal. Some of those lands should be repossessed for non-compliance. Past gov’ts haven’t even bothered to supervise defined processes, or keep track of >$20mln in concessions, probably chewed through years ago. We are giving away hundreds of acres of land, and foregoing millions in fees – to a Billionaire that doesn’t behave in the best public interest. They are literally appealing their loss to Britannia owners to Privy Council, to bleed them out for sport.

    • Anonymous says:

      Sure seems like the company in question is holding the upper hand in all these so called “deals”

    • C'Mon Now! says:

      You forgot to mention the festering eyesore of the old Hyatt hotel, sitting abandoned for years.

      They need to knock it down and remediate the site or be hit with the applicable fine.

  14. Dumpfull says:

    We seem to be wasteing a lot of time on this project.

    • An Unhappy Caymanian says:

      Let me think………………………………………………… It seems like years and years.
      WTF were our so-called “leaders” doing all those years? And years and years ?Oh! I remember now. They wanted a bog fancy expensive dock!

    • Anonymous says:

      It will be worse if Dart still gets to keep his finger in the gravy bowl. Dart is looking out for Dart………. and no one else!

  15. Anonymous says:

    Situation Normal incompetence. Still not figured out but working hard on it so maybe next year or after that just like everything else. Plan on it being never ending and very expensive to fix.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Chief Bozo leading the Cayman Clown Show.

    So much fluff, so little done, the Cayman Regen starring Cameron.

    • Anonymous says:

      How long ago was Hurricane Ivan, and have you seen the state of the old Hyatt today and the overpasses to nowhere? Tell us again how DART does what it says and makes everything wonderful. An inactive and insincere track record speaks otherwise. They don’t give a $#!%. We need a regime that is going to grab them by the collar, shake them awake, and tell them how it is. XXXX As an entity, DART need to start contributing to the territory instead of always being on the take. XXXX

      • Hubert says:

        Dart is a national disgrace in terms of what it has done with the old Hyatt site. But everybody looks the other way and Dart refuses to answer why after all these years they still have not cleaned up the Hyatt mess.

        Dart has no shame.

      • Anonymous says:

        HILARIOUS that you are looking at one thing., the Hyatt and not the 200 other projects and initiatives that were funded by dart that the gov would have never gotten done or handled. Do you know how many community parks dsrt has provided vs the gov. Dart is in turtle monitoring. School stem programs. Scholarships. Like lmfao it’s hilarious to me that you like many others will look at one thing and flip it on its head. Not that every initiative is a good one that I agree with but to say that he isn’t doing what he said he was gunna do if a lie lmao at least his developments aren’t done half ass and shitty looking. Lmaoooo pray for you peace bro and hopefully your Peripheral blockers come down soon. That one track mind have you slow

      • Anonymous says:

        Have you seen anything Dart has built besides the old beat up Hyatt (that he didn’t build)? Compare them to anything CIG has tried and failed to build. You can’t can you. We understand.

    • D. Truth says:

      Where were you during the last three or four governments?

  17. Anonymous says:

    Knock knock.
    Whose there?
    The Dump.
    The Dump who?
    The Dump still here 🤣

    • Anonymous says:

      No matter where the dump goes it will still be here until we reduce, repurpose and recycle.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Honorable Premier, please get tough and do not allow the midnight deals PPM Alden & his cronies made just before they were voted out of power. Have this project bid correctly and in the open for all to see the details please. There has been too much given automatically to certain parties over the years.

    • Anonymous says:

      The bidding was done under Jennifer. The Premiers Chief Officer. She knows the bidding was done correctly. Next excuse not to move on? .

      • Anonymous says:

        Well then you will have no problem with having it all reviewed and rebid again would you? Then we can “move on” or perhaps you could “move out”

        • Truth says:

          Yes. Rebid it. Screw the contract with Dart then just give it to a Caymanian Company and lets see them finally do something right, on time, and on budget. See the problem with that? Besides Dart taking CIG to court for another broken contract. Besides The Caymanian company realizing how much it will really cost to do it right in the middle of their contract. This is why the rich get richer and fools get more in debt. Good chance we do things your way. Again.

  19. Anonymous says:

    We shall see. And, while you’re at it, let’s get on with decriminalisation of cannabis.

  20. Anonymous says:

    If PACT cancel the end of the dump and the knew underground recycling facility, as planned, they are well and truly over

    • Anonymous says:

      Is this because they won’t just hand everything over to Dart like Alden was doing? Why are you PACT haters so hell bent to make sure this predator company gets everything they ask for? Are you an employee?

      • Anonymous says:

        I just want the dump gone and a state of the art waste management facility built, and if dart don’t do it we are back to square one

      • Anonymous says:

        Lmfaooo why are you gate keeping the dump just because it’s dart?! The dump sat and festered on many government hands you know good and well our people wasn’t going to do it for themselves. It was in a very very sorry state until dart started. So stop pretending you fool lmao

  21. Anonymous says:

    Good luck getting re-elected Wayne.

    • Anonymous says:

      It’s not Wayne you must blame.
      It’s the self seeking unemployable rabble that he cobbled together to make up his government.
      Andre is the only one worth having there along with the lady in West Bay.

  22. “Oh but wait” needs to add his 10 cents worth says:

    Any fine print issued by Dart needs reading forwards, backwards and sideways to rule out the usual hoodwinking, bait & switch and avoid selling out Cayman’s future. He’s a slippery character who has easily gained control over key sectors on this island and won’t be too long before he owns the lot if more deals are signed without fully understanding the long term consequences. Then again what are we to do when he’s caught us with our pants down, needing to go badly and there’s no toilet in sight.

  23. Anonymous says:

    Alden & Jon-Jon were in such a rush to make sure papa got the job they could care less about the details. This was pure pork barrel politics. No telling what kind of sweetheart deals they had lined up.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Good deal for Dart and tailored towards them totally. Not a good deal for CIG.
    Past and present COs not up to the task. They got rid of the best infrastructure CO who would have negotiated hard with Dart and had some technical background.

    • Anonymous says:

      Does it matter? The last 40 years of CIG incompetence has gotten us where we are today with no other viable alternatives. Dart has an incentive to get this done and done properly.

  25. Another PACT Excuse says:

    In summary the Government (Minister Turner?) missed the deadline despite Finance Committee being told that the the project was on track and the deadline was known. As you said CNS – This is his first pronouncement on the project. It was never mentioned by Government during the SPS despite McTaggart asking about it. Thats terrible governance. Wayne bas taken it from Sabrina. Lets see what happens next.

    • Anonymous says:

      This is like when Tara missed a deadline and got us greylisted, now Sabrina missing important dates, maybe they need to read these contracts properly

  26. Anonymous says:

    PACT will join the list of every government over the last 30 years (Most of which included McKeeewa) that failed to address the dump issues. Another total Failure in the works.

    • Let’s get it done Wayne says:

      This is the closest we have come to a solution. Jennifer Ahearn and Jim Schubert slowed the progress during the first phase. It progressed after they were removed. The landfill is being covered and on the way to being closed. The hard lifting has been done. Let’s just get the ball over the line Wayne. Stop talking nonsense about people, planet and profits. Let’s talk about what this us about. Capping and closing the environmental hazzard that is the GT landfill and build a modern waste to energy plant that will turn waste into energy cleanly and solve our waste issue for the next half century. It’s that simple. Get on with it.

  27. Anonymous says:

    The Sox months was ambitious cos you guys sat on your butts and did nothing since you in power six months ago!!

    • Let’s get it done Wayne says:

      And they never even signed an extension. Just sat around and ignored it. Idjits.

  28. Anonymous says:

    Soon come bobo

    • Anonymous says:

      2 bigger procastinators than Wayne and Jennifer would be hard to find. Bye,bye ReGen.

    • Anonymous says:

      What is a ‘bobo’?

      • Anonymous says:

        Bobo is not a thing but every Caymanian everybody.

      • Anonymous says:

        Bobo is a term which has always been used in Cayman but was made more famous when a local guy stopped a crook who had just robbed a store and held him until the police arrived. Apparently he was heard saying “Not today, bobo”. So I guess it’s kind of like a dumb dude!

        • Anonymous says:

          Bobo doesn’t have to be dumb and usually isn’t used to indicate that. It’s more like the Cayman version of “dude.” It just so happened the thief you referred to was dumb, too. He tried to rob a fisherman using a gun and the fisherman said, “Not today, Bobo” and took the robber’s gun away.

    • Big Bobo In West Bay says:

      Yeah, I know. Been cumin for 20 years now.

      Guess Big Alden lied when he told us earlier this year the deal was done. Why not ask 🤥 Alden, and Joey too? Deh tuk us too the cleaners again.

    • Anonymous says:

      Like the border reopening?

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