Minister to protect local jobs

| 28/01/2010

Cayman Islands News, Grand Cayman headline news, Cayman education, Grand Cayman new schools(CNS): The recommencement of work at the two new high schools has signalled new opportunities for local business and jobs for Caymanians, government has vowed. Education Minister Rolston Anglin has said that all the sub-contractors and trades firms that will be working on the sites must employ suitably qualified Caymanians. Announcing the full details of the plans to finish the schools, Anglin said that he wanted to give local people the opportunity to earn a living as well as get the job done. The first group of workers attending to critical jobs returned to the site yesterday, and these will gradually be followed by more local construction workers in the coming weeks.

“Government is placing the hiring of suitably qualified Caymanians as a condition in any and allcontracts, and it will want to see staffing arrangements as a part of any arrangement moving forward,” the minister stated. “Under the previous administration, no such protections were provided. At a time when so many Caymanians in the construction industry are seeking work, the government wants to ensure that the schools projects give them an opportunity to earn a living.”

Part of the plan to complete the schools includes providing employment opportunities for local firms with the appointment of a construction management team responsible, amongst other things, for coordinating the activities of the various sub-trades at the sites, and arrangements to advertise the construction management tender are now underway. 

Anglin explained that government had opted to engage a construction management team to complete the project rather than appoint a new general contractor.  “After a detailed review of the pros and cons of the options available, the project team advised that the construction management route was the most appropriate and cost effective,” he said, adding that while the construction works are important, the main objective of the ministry’s work is the improvement of the education system. 

With what was described as a “comprehensive strategy” to complete the John Gray and Clifton Hunter campus projects now in place, the minister did not offer a timeline as to when the schools will be finished, although it is quite clear they will not be ready for the start of the 2010 new school year in September. 

He said, however, that he believed the country would welcome the news that work has restarted, and the project team had been working diligently to identify options to complete the schools in the most cost effective and timely fashion.

“This has involved detailed, painstaking work to gather the necessary data, to undertake the necessary research and negotiations. There is still work to be done, but we have a sensible plan, and I am pleased that we are now in a position to move forward,” Anglin said.  He added that negotiations with the existing sub-contractors in the main sub-trades are still on-going, but was encouraged by the progress.

"This signals that things are moving in the right direction with the first aspect of our strategy, which is to proceed with critical works,” Anglin stated. “We are back underway, albeit in a limited fashion at the present time, but we are well set to increase the activity on both sites in relatively short order.”

He also announced that the existing project management team would be adding personnel under the consultant project manager, David Benoit, who has been engaged in the negotiations with the main sub-trades.

Ministry Chief Officer Mary Rodrigues explained that it was in government’s best interests to continue with the existing sub-contractors where possible to protect the warranties for the work. “The project team has been negotiating with the existing sub-contractors, beginning with the major sub-trades. These include roofing and window installation, exterior wall systems and mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP). However, at the same time, it is critical that the government’s interests are protected. Therefore, where necessary, the government will insist that these protections are built into the final agreements,” she added.

Anglin said that alongside working on the strategy for completing the schools, the ministry and the Department of Education Services have been working to better organize the education system "to raise standards and to improve outcomes".  The work he said was being led by the “New Schools Transitions Taskforce.”

Category: Headline News

Comments (19)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    After the rantings fo McKeeva it is refreshing to read about Rolston’s intelligence. Does anyone need to ask why he was replaced as Deputy Premier?

    • BORN FREE says:

      Everybody knows that Rollie is a decent man & very intellegent. McK Bush is intimidated by Rollie & that is why he keeps him under his thumb. Rollie on the other hand is scared politically of the bully McK Bush, & is scared to go it alone like he wants to, because he knows that McK Bush is more popular politically. Money buys alot, especially popularity, & Rollie can’t match McK financially. Rollie should just follow his heart, come what may. People will admire him more, & if he is afraid of the WB voters going against him for splitting with McK he could run for elections in GT or BT!

  2. ivan mclean says:

    English!…… I need not meet your expectations in order to participate in any type "blog/forum". I work with vigor, astute thought and open mindedness as basic fundamentals in accomplishing and going beyond the call of duty as per a mandate. I do talk to others respectfully regardless of class color or creed. I have not and will not allow others to dictate my status as first, "second  class" or a third class citizen and thats why today my name is "Ivan McLean" i do have a voice and i will stand 4 the truth w/or w/out u how ever u r, come hell or high water. My "wangsta homiez" is my best friend, savior and lord JESUS the CHRIST……. GOD has my back, no1 else & i’ve griped that.

    • Anonymous says:

      Ivan, I respect you for being a man and using your name when you comment unlike us, who either are afraid of victimization or just being mischievious. Stand strong and tall Bro.

    • frank rizzo says:

      By all means, participate to your heart’s content.  I’m just saying your previous post was very difficult for me to read.  Homie.

  3. Pray Tell says:

    Go on, please do tell me exactly what "work" these workers have been doing on these sites for the last three days, I would really like to know.

    Spin me another one Docta

  4. Anonymous says:

    Thank God that we have the minister of education to proctect us from losing our jobs! Only he’s come a little late for some people. Better go work with DER Rollie, cause they seem to be strugglin these days..

  5. Caymanian 2 D Bone says:

    The Craftmanship of Caymanian Construction workers from as far back as the Wattle & Duab houses stood up to a catagory 5 Hurricane, so to you "yellow bellied" Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 01/28/2010 – 08:44. get out and stay out, we don’t need your kind here.  before the expats put their foot on OUR island we were building and surviving just find. 

    • Joe Bananas says:

      Lets forget about all the "other" Craftmanships of Caymanian Construction workers from far back and wait and see how they do with this job. So far its been another Caymanian 2 D bone job.  Here is just one more of many chances to see how Caymanians get er done.  All the best of luck.  If you need any help just ask and if not  O.K.

       And I am Brown bellied Joe Bananas.

    • Anonymous says:

      There were no buildings in Cayman before an expat arrived

      • Anonymous says:

        how would you know, since you only been here a few days? Cayman, as you know, is the best place on planet earth, & we have had the best buildings for as long as anywhere (just not as tall)! At least we can boast of being the very best, otherwise why is your stink azz even here? HAHA, why all the envy, punk?

        • Anonymous says:

          Please name one building that existed before the first expat arrived in Cayman?

          Better go back to Colombus’s reports, I don’t remember him seeing any buildings in Cayman when he sailed past.

          How seem to be quick to forget that all the initial settlers were expats

  6. Anonymous says:

    At least when the schools are over-budget, full of defects and years late in being ready there will be no one to blame but the Caymanian who built them but I’m sure even at that point it will still be someone else’s fault.

    • Dred says:

      Please if you do not have anything intelligent to say please say nothing at all.

      We have Caymanians out of jobs now and we need them working and earning an income otherwise they will be on handouts.

      This is a move I applaud.

      This will no doubt delay the completion because of the less organised approach and in time we will see if there are any savings made from a government standpoint.

      I do think though that whoever looks at this in the end would consider additional savings made by giving the work to Caymanians and theefore avoiding the handouts.

    • ivan mclean says:

      i wonder " ANONYMOUS" if that’s due in part 2 the fact that people like urself still think & advicate that we "CAYMANIANS" r unable 2 accomplish anything unless its speared headed & done by "the imported help" &…… that our negative response is so ingrained due 2 the long road (of b n told we r & treated in our own country like "second best")  we’ve traveled w/that b n the case it may take some time 4 us 2 do, 4 us 2 think, 4 us 2 accept that we’re good enough AND most importantly "take responsibility" 4 our accomplishments &&&&& our "failures"…….. ……there is so much BAD in the best of us & so much GOOD in the worst of us that it ill beholds some of us 2 talk about the rest of us.

      pontificate that "anonymous"

      • Anonymous says:

        of b n told we r & treated in our own country like "second best")  

        mm let’s see

        1) you have first choice on jobs

        2) you don’t get deported when you get made redundant and uprooting your children again, and being left with a home you can’t use

        3) you can vote for the officials in power

        4) you can happily put your name to posts with out the fear of being deported and uprooting your children again, and being left with a home you can’t use

        Yep that sounds like you are treated 2nd best, you’re right

        • tired says:

           

          1.      We have first choice on "token" jobs last choice on all others because of all of the prejudices out there entitled, lazy, uneducated etc. etc.
          2.      While we can’t get deported we can’t pay our mortgages either because we can’t get jobs.   We can’t afford to by land and build here because it is rapidly being priced out of our range.
          3.      We can vote (Yeah!)  
          4.      We do get blacklisted and ostracized and FIRED for speaking up.
           
          So while I saw where you were coming from, and certainly empathize if your kids do have to be uprooted, I do believe that currently living in Cayman is very difficult for all but the very wealthy.
           
          Cayman must treat ALL residents humanely with dignity and respect and then strike a very delicate but necessary balance of looking after its own citizens needs first.  Our land and resources are very limited after all.
      • Anonymous says:

        Idiot, this is a public blog/forum not a text message. Keep your text message speak for when you’re wasting time at work texting. You’re not texting your wangsta homiez now.

        With an attitude like yours, you are second best. That’s why you are treated like second best. If you were not a gimp and put some effort into social skills and doing a better job at work and worked as hard as the imported workers, then you would start to see the positive difference it makes on your life. Whilst you continue to write like a school kid and act like the village idiot, then everyone else is better than you.

        Get a grip of reality pleb

      • frank rizzo says:

        Once again, in English please?