Archive for December 21st, 2011

DoT depends on Caymankind to boost arrivals

| 21/12/2011 | 1 Comment

cayman (1).gif(CNS Business): The success of the new brand image for the Cayman Islands on the global stage will depend greatly on the people who will be ‘Caymankind’. During a presentation at Pedro Castle last week, Shomari Scott, acting director at the Department of Tourism, explained how the branding was created and said he hoped that the new image would help to build on the steady growth in stay-over tourism. Given that the new brand is directly related to people living up to the welcoming and warm image it represents, the DoT is reaching out to the community to get on board. Scott said the Caymankind brand campaign was “an expression of how we treat each other” and the goal was to educate the local community about the importance of the tourism industry. Read more on CNS Business

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Premier says government could not help everyone

| 21/12/2011 | 41 Comments

_DEW4940-web2(3).jpg(CNS): In this year’s Christmas message to the country the premier said government couldn’t help everyone but funds to the elderly and vulnerable were not cut, despite the economic difficulties. Asking people to give love this season, he said that his government was at least offering hope. “Times are real hard, but we have hope that it will get better,” McKeeva Bush said. In his message the opposition leader echoed the point that it had been a difficult and stressful year for many but while times are hard he said we should not lose hope as things will get better.  “Whatever the challenge, whatever the difficult circumstance, we must believe: this too will pass,” Alden McLaughlin said. (Photo by Dennie Warren Jr)

Meanwhile, the governor encouraged people to help others and reinforced the sense of community. “Like any community, we face challenges and we need to find courage to deal with those challenges. But we are also blessed and we need to appreciate those blessings. What better way to do that at this special time of year than by helping others around us in our community?” Duncan Taylor asked in his message.

The deputy premier, Juliana O’Connor, also issued a message of her own to the people for Christmas in which she encouraged them to be kind to one another. “Lending a hand does not require costly gifts; rather the simple human contact such as a hug, a visit, a kind word and sharing food with a neighbour all count for much and are just as effective as a financial offering,” she said.

See the Christmas messages in full below.

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Young swimmers clock personal bests at meet

| 21/12/2011 | 0 Comments

CBAC(iv).jpg(CBAC): A team of Camana Bay Aquatic Club (CBAC) and Stingray Swim Club (SSC) swimmers, their coaches and a support group of parents travelled to Toronto earlier this month, to compete in the 13th Annual Mega City Short Course Special and North York Aquatic Club (NYAC) 29th Annual Youth Cup, both of which took place 1-4 December. The event saw younger swimmers make significant strides toward their individual goals. “For some of the younger swimmers, this was their first taste of competitive swimming abroad,” said CBAC coach Katie Lambert. “There were approximately 850 swimmers in the Mega City and some events had over 185 swimmers competing in them. We had 26 swimmers compete altogether, and all achieved personal best times.”

Mega City is a developmental meet for newer, emerging talent; while the Youth Cup is an international high calibre swim meet for competitive swimmers ages 11 to 17. Both meets are highly respected within the international youth swim circuit. This year the two meets were held at the Etobicoke Olympian pool, to accommodate the more than 1200 swimmers from across Canada, as well as the 32 Cayman Islands swimmers.

Lois Moody, 14, placed 1st in the 100-metre Butterfly with a personal best of 1minute, 17.54 seconds and Isabella Tognazzo, 13, who placed 1st in the 100-metre Backstroke with a personal best of 1 minute, 16.65 seconds. Kavanagh Lambert, 11, placed 3rd in the 50-metre Breaststroke with a time of 41.55 seconds and Drew Milgate, 12, placed 3rd in the 50-metre Breaststroke with a time of 43.21 seconds. CBAC had a total of 32 top ten finishes over the weekend, leading the team to place 6th overallagainst 12 swim clubs.

Six swimmers from CBAC and SSC also participated in the Youth Cup. CBAC had two swimmers in the Youth Cup, and one of them – Coral Tomascik – was also a member of the Cayman Islands Representative Team.

“The Youth Cup was a very fast meet with many talented swimmers,” said Coach Katie. “Both Danielle Boothe and Coral Tomascik had a total of ten personal bests between them; Tomascik, 14, swam a personal best of 28.39 seconds in the 50-metre Freestyle to place 9th and Boothe, 15, took three seconds off her personal best in the 100-metre Breaststroke to place 8th.

SSC members of the Representative Team were brothers Geoffrey and Simon Butler and Alex and Iain McCallum. All four brothers had personal bests in multiple events with Geoffrey placing 9th in the 15-17 age group, 400-metre Freestyle and finishing his 200-metre Freestyle in under two minutes for the first time; Simon reached his first final in the 400-metre Freestyle and finished 8th overall; and both Iain and Alex had personal bests with Alex knocking 4 seconds off his 200-metre Backstroke. National Coach Dominic Ross accompanied the SSC swimmers swimming for the Representative Team.

The Camana Bay Aquatic Club will mark its first-year anniversary this month. In less than a year, the Club has grown to almost 150 team members, spanning ages 5 to 15. Coach Katie Lambert, who has been at the helm of the Club since its inception, says the growing success of the Camana Bay Aquatic Club is due to the strong team atmosphere and the many benefits of competitive swimming. “I am very proud of the team for training so hard over the past few months,” said Coach Katie. “So many of the swimmers had set great personal goals and competing in the Youth Cup and Mega City meets is just the beginning. Most clubs had over 150 swimmers competing, so we did really well to finish in 6th place.”

CBAC, based at the Camana Bay Sports Complex, is one of two swim clubs on island; Stingray Swim Club is headquartered at the Lions Aquatic Centre. Both Clubs are governed by the Cayman Islands Amateur Swimming Association (CIASA).

For more information about the Camana Bay Aquatic Club, email Coach Katie Lambert at:
katie.lambert@camanabay.com. For more information about the Stingray Swim Club, which celebrates its 15th anniversary this year, email stingraysec@gmail.com or visit www.caymanswimming.com

For highlights from the Youth Cup and Mega City meets, visit www.facebook.com/pages/Camana-Bay-
Aquatic-Club
 

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Booze board gives thumbs up to all for NYE

| 21/12/2011 | 9 Comments

new_years_eve.jpg(CNS): The Liquor Licensing Board has given permission to all license holders to serve booze and play music past midnight on New Year’s Eve allowing the parties to continue beyond the stroke of midnight. Officials said that the board has met and approved extended opening hours on Saturday 31 December through Sunday 1 January for all liquor license holders to enable the celebrations to continue despite the fact that News Year’s Day is a Sunday. Bars, restaurants and hotels are permitted to sell liquor until 1:30am and play music until 2:00am while nightclubs are allowed to sell liquor until 2:45 am but the music and dancing must end at 3:00 am.

 “License holders are reminded that license stipulations will still be in effect. Liquor sales must cease during the last ten minutes of the permitted opening hours and all patrons must vacate the premises before closing,” officials stated.

The news comes in the wake of changes to the Music and Dancing law made in the Legislative Assembly last that gave the board the discretionary power to allow extensions on New Year’s Eve whenever the holiday falls on a Saturday/Sunday. 

The law does not allow the combination of sellingdrink and playing live music on Sundays and as a result all license premises are required to close at midnight on Saturdays.

For more information, licensees and members of the public may contact Marva Scott at the Liquor Licensing Office on 244-3168.

 

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Activists angry as MLAs ignore dump concerns

| 21/12/2011 | 24 Comments

DEH Staff at work.jpg(CNS): Despite promises from the district representatives to discuss the relocation of the landfill to Bodden Town activists opposing the move were angry this week that the MLAs could not find time to meet them before the New Year. The Coalition to Keep Bodden Town Dump Free said that back in August the Mark Scotland and Dwayne Seymour had pledged to hold more meetings in Bodden Town to discuss the issue but this has not happened. Annoyed that the MLAS both found time to appear on TV to defend the move but not to meet the concerned residents a spokesperson for the coalition said the people could no longer trust their representatives.

“During the last election campaign Bodden Town was promised economic development and greater consultation by government,” said Vincent Frederick. “What they’re delivering is a garbage dump which will block economic growth and no consultation at all.”

The coalition is opposing a proposed move by the government, as part of the ForCayman Investment Alliance, which will see the closure of the existing landfill in George Town and the development of what it has described as a modern waste-management facility in Midland Acres on land owned by the Dart Group.

The coalition is concerned that there has been no consultation with the local community or any analysis and reports put forward about the proposal. Scotland and Seymour had extended an invitation to meet the group on 30 November which was accepted by the coalition but it says the MLAs won’t fix a date despite finding time to go on TV.

“Instead of meeting their constituents and facing their anger, they chose to respond to the growing opposition to a garbage dump in BT by appearing on CITN on 12 December,” the coalition said this week.
“They repeated, albeit apologetically, that they intend on moving the dump despite their constituents concerns, while admitting that convincing people in the area to accept the change is not easy.”

The coalition said there has still been no explanation why government reneged on the deal to build a waste-to-energy facility on the present site which would have cleaned up Mount Trashmore, and produced free electricity. Nor, they say, have concerns about traffic levels on the district been addressed. Frederick said there was still no explanation on why the Midland Acres site was chosen and no assessment of the consequences on the residents of Bodden Town.

“How can we trust any elected representative who ignores our concerns, and ignores the already critical level of truck traffic passing along the main road through Bodden Town?”asked Frederick. He said that at the August meeting Mark Scotland had claimed that the relocation would lead to an increase of200 vehicle trips per day’ which would mean 400 more trucks given the return trip but the minister has said there was still no reason for additional roads.

The coalition said it hopes Seymour and Scotland to consider how moving the dump so far from the source of the waste, and adding to the already critical level of truck traffic, will damage the district they represent and destroy the community’s way of life and have answers to their many questions, when and if, they finally meet in the New Year.

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Safety improvements at Cayman Islands Sailing Club

| 21/12/2011 | 0 Comments

(CISA): Harbour House Marina this week donated two state of the art ICOM handheld VHF radios to the Cayman Islands Sailing Club (CISC) as part of the on-going programme of safety improvements at the Club.Raph Harvey, the Head Sailing Instructor at CISC said, “This donation means that each of our instructors will be able to carry a VHF radio at all times when coaching or officiating on the water and be in constant communication with each other and our land based staff. The Club takes very seriously our commitment to make sailing as safe as possible and we are grateful to Harbour House for their continued support of our activities and programmes”.

The CISC continuously reviews and updates safety procedures for all events and activities. This donation follows a recent review of on water safety procedures which the ClSC consideredto be a top priority.

Jonathan Cuff, the General Manager at Harbour House Marina said, “We are always happy to help out with sailing programmes at the Sailing Club and are particularly delighted to be able to donate these top of the range, waterproof, handheld VHF radios. I think they will significantly contribute to improving on-water safety”.

The Cayman Islands Sailing Club is the national sailing authority of the Cayman Islands and promotes sailing in many ways throughout the Islands. In addition to organising Club racing and social and sailing events including lessons, the Club also runs a very large and successful schools sailing programme for both Government and private schools.

Thousands of children in Cayman have had the opportunity to experience sailing over the course of the current programme which is in its 7th year and in 2012 will expand to the districts of East End and North Side.  The Club will be holding RYA Yachtmaster and other courses in February 2012. The Club itself is one of the oldest clubs in the Islands with its roots going back to the 1930s.

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Beer company to help turtle conservation

| 21/12/2011 | 0 Comments

turtle.jpg(CNS): SABMiller the company that produces MillerLite has developed a strategic partnership with the non-profit Wider Caribbean Sea Turtle Conservation Network (WIDECAST), aimed at saving local Caribbean sea turtle populations through advocacy, research, education, and volunteer programs – including beach clean-ups and other community-based activities that impact sea turtle habitats. The Cayman Islands department of Environment said the funding would help the department to buy resources such as light shields to stop baby turtles going the wrong way in nesting season.

WIDECAST is an expert network of biologists, community leaders, and educators in more than 40 Caribbean nations and territories committed to the recovery and sustainable management of depleted sea turtle populations. They network is represented by the Department of Environment (D.O.E.) in the Cayman Islands.

“The Department of Environment is grateful for the support of SABMiller and Cayman Distributers in raising awareness about sea turtles and fundraising to assist in their conservation,” said Janice Blumenthal, Research Officer at the D.O.E. “Sea turtle populations in the Cayman Islands are critically endangered and face many threats to their survival. Funds raised by Miller will allow us to purchase much-needed materials to assist in protecting our turtles – including supplies for underwater cleanups and shields to prevent lights near the beach from leading baby turtles in the wrong direction.” 

SCott Schaier, SABMiller’s Manager of Caribbean operations said getting involved with the conservation was about becoming a valued member of the community and proactively promoting causes that are important to its customers, business partners, and their families.

“We see this as an ideal extension of our “Island Flavor” advertising campaign. And we feel fortunate to be able to partner with WIDECAST and look forward to helping increase community support for endangered sea turtles, raising environmental awareness, and promoting a stronger sense of community within the Caribbean,” he added.
 
Cayman Distributor's General Manager Frank Roulstone said the firm was proud to be associated with such a worthy cause. “We believe this important partnership with WIDECAST will make a tremendous difference in helping to preserve our coastal environments. Few places in the world owe as much to sea turtles as do the Cayman Islands,” he added.
 

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ERA starts search for more power

| 21/12/2011 | 1 Comment

55472-electricity.jpg(CNS Business): The body which monitors the islands’ power supply has said that, as a result of a projected peak in demand and the coming disuse of some of CUC’s existing generating capacity, it is offering the opportunity for qualified companies to bid to become new generators of up to 18MW of power for Grand Cayman. The Electricity Regulatory Authority announced on Tuesday the beginning of the process of competitive procurement.  Sherri Bodden-Cowan, the Chair of the Board, explained that competition for new generation on Grand Cayman is one of the core principles on which new licences were granted to CUC back in 2008. Read more on CNS Business

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