Seymour wants EIA for East-West road cancelled

| 03/04/2023 | 96 Comments
Cayman News Service
Minister Dwayne Seymour

(CNS): The appointment of Dwayne Seymour MP (BTE) to Cabinet has scuppered his plan to file a private member’s motion asking the government to cancel the environmental impact assessment for the stretch of the East-West Arterial Road extension from Hurst Road through Bodden Town. Seymour, a former environment minister who has shown little enthusiasm for protecting it, can no longer bring the motion now that he is back in Cabinet.

Seymour was made labour minister last month in a sudden reshuffle after Premier Wayne Panton sacked Chris Saunders (BTW), his former deputy. The premier has said the rift was due to misconduct but Saunders has said it was about political differences.

At a public meeting in his constituency last week, Seymour said that he had been surprised to be made the new minister, as he was “not the most liked”. He also revealed his desire to get the road built without understanding the likely implications, saying that his constituents wanted an extra hour in bed.

However, just last week, the premier told CNS that poor, ad hoc, short-term past development decisions had caused many of the issues we face today and stressed the need to do things properly in future. Appearing on the platform at Seymour’s meeting, Panton explained how the failure to do any studies prior to the construction of Anton Bodden Drive has led to the district’s flooding problems.

“When we build this road, we need to know exactly how to do it,” he said, stressing that it was PACT that got this ball rolling to build a safe road that won’t increase the flooding. “This government is doing it… The reality is that this could have been done five times.”

The National Conservation Council has also directed under the National Conservation Act that the planned 10-mile extension to the road must be the subject of the EIA because of the significant detrimental impact it will have on the environment and the significant risk of increased flooding. Technical experts at the Department of Environment have said it will be essential to conduct a comprehensive EIA that covers the full route, given the knock-on impact.

But Seymour wants the government to build the stretch to Woodland Avenue in Bodden Town and to add more junctions without having any idea how this will impact the natural resources along the route or how the existing communities will be impacted by more flooding. Seymour argued that because the conservation law was not in effect when the road was gazetted, there is no need for an EIA.

Accepting the frustrations of those in the Eastern Districts over traffic, Panton explained that the congestion is an island-wide issue now on Grand Cayman that would not be solved by a single road. Panton confirmed that the government would be limiting the importation of vehicles, given the growing population and the number of cars being brought in by individuals each year.

Panton spoke about encouraging carpooling in the short term and introducing a public transport system as soon as possible to address the mounting congestion from West Bay to East End.

Panton was clear, however, that the EIA process would continue on the full EWA expansion. That assessment is expected to be completed by the end of this year. At that point, the premier said, armed with the relevant information, the design and construction of the road could begin.


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Category: development, Local News

Comments (96)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    John John is no more a fool than the majority of the PACT membership. Carefully study each one and you will see!

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  2. NoName says:

    Completed before the end of 2023 ? What are they dispensing into the NRA’s workforce to come up with such a prediction? Benzedrine? A more realistic approach would be Q1 … 2025 at the very least!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Jon Jon as a senior member of the CIG. Just LOL 😆. What dire straits we are in if this dafty holds a position of power. There isn’t a pool of talent to pick from, more like a very light mist.

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    • Cha!! says:

      There is indeed a large pool of capable individuals, but , these individuals realize the exten of skullduggery, lies, uniéndose, corruption etc that exists in the political arena; and therefore have no stomach for that end game , and irrespective of who the newbies will be.

    • Anonymous says:

      9;51 am, remember a fool is forever, its no cure for it, take a fool and educate him, he be just an educated fool, even after he is dead he still be a dead fool. There are many, many fool voters that can’t be cured.

  4. Anonymous says:

    John John is not the sharpest spoon in the drawer.

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  5. Anonymous says:

    CIG is, unsurprisingly, overthinking this. Simply introduce a FREE bus service. Note; bus, not garbage 3rd world vans. The drivers will have passed a real driving test and be salaried cig employees, the busses will be on a schedule and be GPS tracked. If they can’t find room in the billion dollar budget increase fuel duty to pay for it. This is simple, simple stuff most places figured out 100 years ago.

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  6. Anonymous says:

    Public transportation can only work if you teach certain foreigners that you need to walk to a bus stop that is not on a corner. Not in front of your house or be close to other passengers going the same way. You need them to understand to let the bus driver know you a need a bus by waving your hand. They need to pay at the beginning of the bus ride.
    That being said, it won’t work unless there is a consensus that a bus is not a limousine. So first thing you need to have is 1) bus stops that allow customers a place to wait with cover from the rain and the sun and a seat. The bus stop must be off the road far enough so it doesn’t stop traffic from going around. 2) Take out middle seats in coaster busses ( bus is full with 22 passengers seated) 3) Government must pay a minimum of $5000 per month per bus, like they pay the school busses. 4) most of the reason busses take long to move faster, the road is blocked or they have to make change or the excuses that the passenger has no change or money to pay for the trip (because the driver collects after the ride). 5) Fixing this problem of speedier service can be remedied by Government paying for a free ride or collecting money for a week’s pass, monthly pass or areas in hotels, grocery stores, gas stations etc. no money transaction is the best (less crime). As we go along the bus companies have a chance to upgrade to larger busses which will come at a much higher cost of over 100,000’s dollars.
    As long as government put in place these first simple needs to launch a new public transport service, we could start tomorrow morning?
    Well there are almost a hundred tour busses parked in George Town waiting for business from
    the cruise lines.
    They are parked there from 5:45 every morning. The need for so many public busses is only 5:30-9:00am then 2:45-7:00pm at this time. Public Busses leaving every 5 minutes. During this time we would have 1-2-3 busses leaving at the same time for the extra load factor. We can reduce the amount of busses to a bus every 15 minutes after 9:00am till 2:45pm when we would increase more busses to leave at 5 minute intervals after 2:45-7:00pm. We do the same as the morning schedule for the evening schedule.
    Try it, CI Government would save10 of millions of dollars of road resurfacing and widening.
    D Miller tour operator, 33 years experience, Caymanian

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  7. Anonymous says:

    Cancel Jon Jon & Jay Ebanks stop the degradation of the Cayman Islands NOW !

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  8. Anonymous says:

    if the rich owns the present dump…i speculate/probably in future dump will be moved to bodden town…right up unna backyards!

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  9. Anonymous says:

    He even looks lost in the photo

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  10. Anonymous says:

    Jon Jon is a complete idiot. I can’t believe this guy is in charge of anything.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Better him than Kenneth.

      At least Mr. Seymour has a business and skills that allow him to earn a living outside of politics.

      Where else is Kenneth ever going EARN an HONEST living and be able to travel business class or make more than CI$6,000 a month?

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  11. Pole Cam says:

    Jon Jon unfortunately just does not get it and he needs others like Wayne to remind him ! Sad Jon Jon please fix CBC before it ends up like the RCJPS !

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  12. Anonymous says:

    if this road is built without an EIA, we should commit further to going East.

    Time to move the garbage dump into Bodden Town, without an EIA.

    Think on the money saved, if GT dump is just capped and a new dump in BT, then then Bodden Town can stop sending is garbage up 7MB, like it has done for 50 years.

    Without an EIA, it will drop the cost for Cayman from $2 billion to less than $10 million. Just but the BT land and start dumping.

    But the Honorable Seymour, seems like a man who only wants and eats the icing of a cake.

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    • Anonymous says:

      If you judge by politicians, BT is a garbage dump.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Most of the trash is produced in GT/WB. Makes no sense transport it all way to BT,

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      • Anonymous says:

        Close to half the population lives East of Grand Harbor, you have been perfectly happy to send your trash, including Ivan trash to the dum for close to half a century.

        Now the dump is full, and we are expanding further East, with the new extention only being about further development, makes more sense to have the dump in BT.

        A much cheaper solution especially if an EIA isn’t needed.

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        • Anonymous says:

          And contaminate the fresh water lens? How stupid can you be thinking of placing the dump in BT. Have you been out side Camana Bay on a windy day? Worst than smell of crap when drinking and eating a meal.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Throw the bum out as he is obviously a shill for special interests.

    How about getting a Government elected that will look out for all Caymanians? And no PPM, you are definitely not it.

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  14. Anonymous says:

    Poor Wayne! He doesn’t have any intelligent people to choose from. Jon Jon is a complete idiot. Sad…….

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  15. Anonymous says:

    PACT continues to be a garbage government run by garbage people. I wish I could post this comment under my actual name instead of “Anonymous”.

    Nothing has been done that the people want. We want environmental protection, we want solutions to the commute times, we want solutions for crime and we want solutions for reasonable housing and food costs.

    The average worker here makes $3,500 KYD per month. my rent just got raised today $200 with warnings it will go up another $200 by August and this is a common story for a lot of renters this month. People are desperate and are only going to get more desperate as the cost of just living here become unattainable and unsustainable for most workers.

    There needs to be major changes in how labor is paid. people who work 45 hours per week should not be surviving on ramen noodles and living in a shack that doesn’t allow pets or even children…

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    • BLVCKLISTED says:

      Somehow managed to secure a house, but I have to rent my spare rooms (never raised rent), and eat once a day to make ends meet.

      I’ve received 3 emails from my bank in 2022 increasing my mortgage payments by a little over $500 in total, with another increase on the way since interest rates have gone up again. House insurance is about to go up this year and so are utilities as well as groceries.

      All of this to sit in traffic for about 15+ hours a week, work 40 hours, and then get by with little to no entertainment or real life experiences available.

      Honestly can’t wait to sell this thing to the highest bidder and high tail it out of here.

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      • Anonymous says:

        They call it social poverty. Unfortunately a lot of people in this world (mostly from the US and Canada) think that unless you are living in the street, you’re not actually living in poverty because they don’t believe quality of life is important, only monetary poverty exists.

        Nobody should have to live eating crap food, no socialising, siting in the dark because they can’t afford to actually live.

        And that’s because the “Look at Africa to see what real poverty is” crowd jump in remind you how good you have it – normally the same people that have it a million times better than you.

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      • Anonymous says:

        And contaminate the fresh water lens? How stupid can you be thinking of placing the dump in BT. Have you been out side Camana Bay on a windy day? Worst than smell of crap when drinking and eating a meal.

      • Anonymous says:

        Yeah Cayman is a shit pot for the natives and wonderland for the expats I.e. no income tax and sunny 365 days per year. The sad part is the expats can save and relocate to the place of birth. Where does the Caymanian go? PACT please get your act together cause the locals are struggling.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Wayne Panton is a complete disapointment!!!

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    • Anonymous says:

      how can he be a disappointment based on what idiots have been elected? The whole election process is messed up. You literally have to select from a pool of donkeys to put into cabinet. Just crazy.

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      • Anonymous says:

        your kind of giving donkeys a bad name their old buddy!

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      • Anonymous says:

        he could have said NO! And worked with the PPM at least they are not a bunch of oogling ding bats!

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      • Anonymous says:

        8.27 This nasty and disrespectful attitude towards Caymanians is exactly what makes it hard for some expats to be made welcome in Cayman. People like you only serve to hurt other expats who do not share your stinking attitude.

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        • Realist says:

          Nasty and disrespectful? Grow up. You have failed. Just as you can’t generate enough competent doctors, enough competent teachers, enough competent accountants, etc – and you rely on the generosity of expats to prop up your little island – you can’t generate enough competent politicians.

          You don’t, you never have, and you never will. It’s simply unachievable in a population of c30,000 with such appalling levels of educational achievement (particularly appalling in the context of the millions haemorrhaged on education).

          Cayman is presently incapable of self-government. Expats should be allow to both vote and stand for election. Cayman would be far better for it. The truth hurts, but it’s still true.

          Or don’t. Continue to destroy your little island. We find it frustrating, because your xenophobia and refusal to open politics and voting is a form of slow-motion suicide for Cayman, -but- we can always escape, and hardly any of us will stay here when we retire. You should be more circumspect, though.

          Please also see the following link, which both expands upon and evidences these points: https://caymannewsservice.com/2023/03/premier-admits-widening-of-caymans-economic-success-gap/#comment-587383

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          • Anonymous says:

            Grand Cayman is over populated with underpaid blue collar workers and it continues! Wayne Panton’s lack of support for requiring all work permit applications, including temporary work permits, is nothing short of disgusting. It should be a requirement that ALL work permit applications must be advertised.

          • Anonymous says:

            So you want to be able to run for election without having any real vested interest here, but retire elsewhere. This shows clearly your lack of commitment to these islands, with economics the only motivation and not true nation building. This is why generational Caymanians need to remain in control, and strip the work-permit system down to a maximum of 3-5yrs with an immediate roll-over to avoid a claim of permanent residency in combination with the much needed overhaul of the points system.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Upon reading this article and enlightenment from the honorable Seymour it behooves me to say in this regard dat Cayman should incentivize the community to drive small electric cars like those “Eats delivery” Mario Kart cars on Eastern Avenue AND build a monorail from East End Medical to George Town and Camana Bay.
    Furthermore I behoove dat this monorail be called the McKeeva Express with promo commercials “com’n ride dat train choo choo ‘n ride it”.

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  18. Frustrated Caymanian says:

    KB finally put a cork in it. Now we have to listen to this buffoon.

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  19. Anonymous says:

    1. You only have to see how much better the traffic flows when only one or two schools are out on break to realise that we are perhaps overthinking this.

    2. As an employer, I would happily provide my staff with an annual bus pass IF there was a decent service. As it is, the few staff that still attempt to travel by bus are frequently late to work, and the rest have all given up and bought cars…

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  20. Anonymous says:

    Jon Jon passing a law to bypass current laws on the books is unethical and proves that you guys cannot be trusted. Why is this road development so important? Why not implement some of the suggested alternatives before destroying the environment?

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  21. Anonymous says:

    The road cannot be built without proper consultation with landowners and the public prior to the gazetting. Did that happen….no!

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  22. Executive S says:

    One of the concerns for phase 2 of the EWA is what is referred to as the ‘bathtub’ effect.

    When you have a heavy rain event, water floods and drains naturally to the lowest point ie the Central Mangrove Wetland whereas a Hurricane event will flood from all sides. If you damn the area with roads as proposed by the EWA and southerly connectors, simply adding basic drainage under a road that is only 5’ above sea level will require significant engineering to mitigate the already known choke points and gulley effects.

    Recent examples of drainage ditches from Parkway under the Harquail bypass along the landfill to north sound is an example of recent engineering for mitigating problematic infrastructure whereas the Linford Pearson Hwy drains south from the road to the south sound wetland basin which acts as a natural collection and filtration basin.

    Neither of these roads were built with an EIA and both have an environmental impact on surrounding urban development, especially as wetlands are removed or die off. An EIA for phase 2 of the EWA will highlight the problems and solutions for and why the EIA review is critical.

    We hope that MP Seymour understands that protecting homes and saving lives as well as planning for future development are more important than an extra hour in bed.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Thank you!!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Build this part of the road on raised pilings, above the water and mangroves. Water will flow freely underneath.

      Simple solution really…..but property owners wanting access to their future sub-divisions would not be too happy.

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  23. Anonymous says:

    Pact has reached the bottom of the Barrel now……..
    What was that Movie with Jim Carreyand Jeff Daniels called D..& D..er , or was it P.A.C.T.

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  24. anonymous says:

    Ok – I will admit it! I watched the PACT’s first election rally last week. I was seduced into thinking it was a meeting to update his constituents on all the ‘progress’ that had been made by Jon-Jon. At least that’s what the flyer said, (although my friend told me there was going to be a demonstration by Saunders supporters).Boy was that false advertising! It really was was the first PACT election rally, complete with food and everything. All sorts of promises led by Jon-Jon, followed by Jay, Sabrina, Heather and even election strategist Sandy Hill was on hand and promote the PACT plans. All sorts of promises that included building the new connector road and starting the project the next day. It all looked great for Jon-Jon until the Premier appeared on the stage at about 10:30pm and basically dropped the bomb that nothing would be done with the environmental impact assessment.
    From what I understand this is exactly how the PACT operates – make rogue promises and plans individually, then sell them to their allies like Jay, Kenny and Saunders, then think they are off to the races, until Wayne arrives on the scene to pull the pin.
    Once more reason they are all fighting with each other over their own pet projects and nothing gets done collectively.
    Wayne, have some self respect, how can you stand on Jon-Jon’s podium and announce that the PACT is united and everything is fine. Talk to the people in this country – ITS NOT!

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  25. Anonymous says:

    Proverbs 22:3 “The prudent sees danger and hides himself, but the simple go on and suffer for it.”

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  26. Anonymous says:

    Personal agendas and promises everywhere. This guy is something else though. 3rd world standard.

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  27. Anonymous says:

    Why would Panton take a platform to support that kind of madness?
    All hope in Premier is lost he speaks out of all sides of his mouth.
    He will do anything for power it’s so embarrassing I hoped he was different

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    • Anonymous says:

      I received my notice they are take a piece of my property..property is fence nra states fence will be removed not their job to put back. I can file a claim. I don’t want the money I dint want to give up my property

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  28. Anonymous says:

    This is what we get when Independents come together to form a government. They all have their own agendas. Makes you wonder who’s in charge.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Made worse by the fact that 85% of them are uneducated self seeking unemployables .

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      • Anonymous says:

        87.6%

        • Anonymous says:

          And we wonder why our kids are failing math in school.

          18 of 19 is 94.7%
          17 of 19 is 89.5%
          16 of 19 is 84.2%

          The real difficulty is in naming the one, two, or three who are the exception to the rule.

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          • Anonymous says:

            You have failed to take in to account those who are partially educated self seeking (serving) unemployables. I stand by 87.6%

  29. Anonymous says:

    If true, should change his name to SeeLess.

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  30. Anonymous says:

    Why do people vote for this buffoon? And a place on the cabinet? What an embarrassment. I was unfortunate to have to sit and listen to him speak once, and it was torture.
    He’s clearly not fit for office but keep giving out those new roofs Dwayne and the thick people in BT will keep on woting for you.
    And Bodden Town – the only place in the world where the bypass has speed bumps, no easy turn out at the end, and takes longer to use than crawling through the town itself. Stupid.

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  31. Anonymous says:

    If they want an extra hour of bed, go to sleep earlier.

    To build a road that long we need to be 100% sure that it won’t cause a second problem with flooding etc.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Can tell you’re not stuck I traffic 2 hours + at each end of a 9 hour day.

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    • Anonymous says:

      2.54 The answer is culverts, ((to allow water to flow under the roads). The problem is NRA seems reluctant to use them.Culverts were in use here from the sixties, with one of the first being under the road at ‘Breadfruit Walk’ in Lower Valley. Later in 1968 when Bahamas Pavers rebuilt the roads from BT Police station to Frank Sound Fire Station in North Side and to Lower End the Bay in East End they put in a number of culverts. NRA just needs to build and use of more of them.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Culverts don’t work, as the deepwells don’t work, coz we pulled up all the natural drainage with no plan and we have no stormwater plan. You are talking about draining the ‘Everglades’ through a pin hole! There are other ways to fix the traffic woes quicker than man building roads- WHY is no politician talking about them 🤔

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        • Realist says:

          “ Local politicians are determined to make money by building roads to allow them to develop and sell land they own. Call it what it is: corruption. Quite aside from the transparent dishonesty, it’s nonsensical: more roads won’t reduce traffic. Nor will buses: they use roads, too… Look at Hong Kong, Singapore or Dubai: what’s required is a light rail system (e.g. DLR), tram system or monorail. Yes, it will be expensive. No, there’s no alternative unless you want a permanently-jammed hellscape for everyone living east of Hurley’s (What’s that, MPs? You don’t care: you just want $$$$. Of course.) EVEN BANGLADESH HAS A LIGHT RAIL SYSTEM. CAYMAN IS FALLING BEHIND THE THIRD WORLD… https://bdnews24.com/metro-rail/xinc4i0jh1”

          See also: https://caymannewsservice.com/2023/03/premier-admits-widening-of-caymans-economic-success-gap/#comment-587383

  32. Anonymous says:

    “Seymour argued that because the conservation law was not in effect when the road was gazetted, there is no need for an EIA.”

    This man should not have the influence he has now

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    • Anonymous says:

      Seymour does not have the brain to have come up with that on his own.
      One of his ministry’s civil servants must have planted that , and Seymour ran with it just to show his district what a clever boy he is.

  33. Anonymous says:

    Bet he wants rubber light poles installed too.

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  34. Anonymous says:

    This road can NOT be built without PROPER DRAINAGE

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  35. Anonymous says:

    I am absolutely flabbergasted that Seymour made it into the minister club. This man is direct threat to sustainable development in the Cayman Islands. The EIA doesn’t need canceling need Seymour does. I sure hope the of majority his constituents aren’t as thick and ignorant as the he is🙄.

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  36. Anonymous says:

    The clown show continues, Saunders last week, not to be outdunced, here comes Jon-Jon. This could be a comedy show broadcast to millions, were it not do tragic and the damage to the reputation of the Cayman Islands this government has caused in the last 2 years. The CIG pays huge amounts for large numbers of employees to attend strategic leadership courses but the reality is no one at the most senior levels possesses the intellect, gravistas and vision to understand how to lead for the benefit of the Cayman Islands as a whole.

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  37. Alice M says:

    I want you and mister Jay to be remove from government too. but we cant always get what we now can we ?

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  38. Anonymous says:

    Seymour and Saunders. So stupid and useless. At least they haven’t been getting their way, but god knows what useful laws they have blocked.

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  39. Ask me nah? says:

    The time you spend trying to destroy our precious environment John John why dont you try a fix this terrible situation up here at CBC where nepotism cronyism and corruption is rife but i guess just like your predecessor and soulmate saunders you too will ignore this dire situation and heap praise on the perpetrators. Spraying perfume yet again on this doo doo hoping we can’t smell how stink this $#@!is.

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  40. Anonymous says:

    “limiting importation of vehicles…” will do nothing to limit traffic, unless we limit the importation of people.

    It is people that drive cars.

    And people arent going to carpool unless there are carpool lanes (which is not really practical).

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    • Anonymous says:

      Who needs vehicles when you can ride on a donkey?

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      • Beaumont Zodecloun says:

        I would expect that the insurance for any animals in the Equidae Family would be the limiting factor. Of course, with some of our insurance in question, who really knows?

        Remember folks, you must ride your donkeys WITH the traffic.

        Roundabouts are going to be a biotch.

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      • Anonymous says:

        In the full moonlight!

      • Anonymous says:

        I guess that YouTube moment will never get old !

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