|New management for NAPA |
CLINT CHAN TACK Friday, January 6 2017
A new management model for the National Academy for the Performing Arts (NAPA) north and south campuses; evaluation of proposals for the Couva Adult and Children’s Hospital; evaluation of proposals for a new hotel in St Clair; the restart of the Solomon Hochoy Highway Extension Project and consultations with respect to a proposed Sandals resort in Tobago, were among the issues discussed at a two-day retreat held by the Government at the Diplomatic Centre in St Ann’s, Port-of-Spain.
Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley made these announcements at a news conference on Wednesday at the same venue, following the end of the retreat. Rowley said the proposed model will follow the successful management model used by Queens Hall in Port-of-Spain.
He also disclosed that proposals will be made to the private sector regarding the operation of a 50 room hotel at NAPA in Port-of- Spain. On the future of the Couva Hospital built under the former People’s Partnership (PP) government, Rowley said a committee has been appointed to evaluate proposals for that facility.
Similarly, another committee has been appointed to evaluate proposals for the construction of a hotel on the site of the Agriculture Ministry in St Clair to help boost convention tourism in TT. Regarding the Solomon Hochoy Highway Extension Project, Rowley said contracts for different phases of the project should be awarded soon and construction should start in March. He also indicated that the PP did not put in proper financing arrangements for the Point Fortin and Arima Hospitals and these will be reviewed. Rowley said Government will address this matter and has decided that Sangre Grande will get a new hospital.
The Prime Minister said the route for the proposed Toco to Valencia Highway has been agreed upon and tenders will be issued for the proposed Toco port on a design- build basis. He also indicated that CEPEP will be split into three components to be overseen by the Local Government, Works and Agriculture Ministries respectively.
After talking about the National Gas Company (NGC) having to ration the supply of natural gas to companies at the Point Lisas Industrial Estate, Rowley said a new platform constructed at the Union Industrial Estate in La Brea will soon be deployed in this country’s marine acreage to explore for additional oil and natural gas reserves.
On lingering concerns regarding a housing allowance for President Anthony Carmona, Rowley suggested this was a matter which the Auditor-General should look at to allay those concerns.