Dart talks move forward

| 05/06/2014

(CNS): Following recent comments that no progress had been made between government and the Dart Group over the agreements the developer had made with the previous administration, the premier said Wednesday that a recent meeting between him and the Dart CEO had led to a better understanding on both sides. Alden McLaughlin gave no details of the advances made between the parties but said that he had received a letter from Dart, which he described as “very helpful”. He said he was optimistic that over the course of the next few weeks the government and the islands’ largest investor would be able to come to terms on which they could agree, but the premier was reluctant to say more as he said the understanding was still at risk.

Speaking in the Legislative Assembly as he wrapped up the budget debate yesterday, McLaughlin said that since taking office, the PPM government had met with Dart around nine times with little progress being made on the outstanding negotiations in relation to the development of the Kimpton Hotel, the closure of the West Bay Road and the redevelopment of the Seven Mile Public Beach area. McLaughlin said that his team wanted to negotiate terms that would be more acceptable to the people of the Cayman Islands.

He said people were aware of the stumbling blocks and government had been careful about what it had said regarding the talks, as government believes the Dart Group is a major and important player in the Cayman economy, having invested millions of dollars. The premier told his parliamentary colleagues that there was every indication that the group wanted to invest more and, as a result, the government wanted to do all it could to partner with Dart to create opportunities.

At the recent meeting with the CEO of the Dart group, McLaughlin said, significant progress had been made and resulted in a better understanding and appreciation of what both sides require. McLaughlin told the LA that he had received a letter on Tuesday that had given him cause to be optimistic.

The premier added that it was important that things were not left hanging with respect to the previous agreements and said he wanted to encourage Dart to continue investment in the local economy.

Stating that he could not go into detail as it may all still fall apart again, he felt there had been more positive progress, and given his most recent statement that there was none, he wanted to indicate things had moved forward.

During the run up to the May 2013 election the PPM had campaigned on the basis that it wanted to renegotiate the terms of the agreements that had been made between the UDP government andDart in connection with the deals known as the NRA agreement and the wider ForCayman Investment Alliance.

While in opposition the PPM had wanted to retain some form of access along the West Bay Road but following the election the new government said there was nothing it could do regarding the closure of the road but it was focusing on renegotiating the 50% accommodation tax concession, which Planning Minister Kurt Tibbetts had described as unacceptable.

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  1. Mark Hennings says:

    Beg him to take the dump, please,  but ask him if we can put a few solar panels on it.(100,000)

  2. Anonymous says:

    i am very serious : what did we get out of that Dart deal ????

    victoria house beach is no longer on the table

    the bodden town dump is off the table

    the FREE G.T. dump give-a-away to dart is off the table

    the dual highway ( Esterley Tibbets ) is gone

    and oh ja, we lost 4,500 of PRIME ocean front road

    so, what do we get ???? 

    THIS government sucks big time !!

    • Anonymous says:

      Not quite.  The McKeeva Bush government suckED big time!! And thankfully is now GONE forever.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Government — PLEASE approve the completion fo the Public Beach park and bike/walking paths.  The government told Dart to stop last September so they could 'study' this more.

    Please.  Give Dart the go ahead for Dart to spend $3 million to complete this so the people of Cayman and tourists can use it. 

    Dart publicly said in May it just needs government to give the nod

    • Anonymous says:

      Why is this even controversial?   Finish the park!!

      Everytime I drive by there I am so annoyed.   Are we going to accept this dirt lot forever?

      Read the May Compass article .  Dart waiting for government to 'approve' the completion of a PARK!!.  

      So we have Dart willing to spend 3 million, have a bit of employment, and the have a free park….and why are we waiting?

      Bike trails, campsites, volleyball and beach soccer courts, amphitheater grass field for frisbee …..for free.,,,,,ummm…

      impatient but annoyed.  Don't worry PPM, we will forgive you if you approve a free park.

      Am I missing something???

      Why am i the only one???  Please explain…

  4. Anonymous says:

    And here comes Alden's "noviceness" again !!! Completely unsuitable as Premier. He has years of political experience but yet no political acumen and is as gullible as "Feather" 

    • Anonymous says:

      Yeah, we need the "acumen" of McKeewa!

      • Anonymous says:

        No we certainly don't need anything from McKeeva ever again but sadly, indeed very sadly, McKeeva does have much better political acumen than Alden !

  5. McCarron McLaughlin says:

    I smell a law suit in Cayman's future from Dart….

    • Anonymous says:

      Our Government, past and present have clearly illustrated that the threat of law suits from botched contracts is their normal MO and they couldn't give a rats ass about being sued, after all its us,  the people that have to pay in the end, whilst they collect huge salaries for doing f**k all.

    • Anonymous says:

      Wait till the dump fiasco goes to court, then you know what a law suit looks like. Government has passed off this problem for 20yrs, there is only so long before people get fed up with broken contracts….

    • Anonymous says:

      Won't happen bobo. He loves cayman

    • Anonymous says:

      Bring it on. He won't be the first developer to come up against the Caymanian people. And lose. The reality isthat Cayman doesn't need Dart. What's it gonna do without him – sink into oblivion? Gimme a break. 

    • Anonymous says:

      Funny, I smell subversiveness. And it smells like money.

  6. Anonymous says:

                   I wonder if this progress has anything to do with the kickback against the proposed Dart distillery on Eastern Ave.Maybe we will get two additional lanes on the Southern end of the Esterly Tibbetts Highway ,or a change in the amount that Dart can withhold from room tax ,in exchange for getting the green light on the distillery project.

    • Anonymous says:

      What Kickback, tell us what you know.. 

      • Lex Icon says:

        In the Caymanian Dictionary this is otherwise defined as “push back”.

        • Anonymous says:

                     09:43.Collins English Dictionary defines kickback as :noun –a strong reaction,which is the the dfeinition used in my post on Thu, 05/06/2014 – 18:27.So I guess the Caymanian Dictionary is in some pretty good company.Looks like the joke is on you Lexicon,as kickback is indeed a part of the English language.


        • Anonymous says:

            09:43.I looked up "push back" in Collins English Dictionary ,but there was no definition for it .I did find a definition for "pushback" though,perhaps that is what you intended. I also found one definition of kickback which is " a strong reaction" and was most likely the meaning attached to it by the commenter at 18:27.

      • Anonymous says:

        09:12. Here is what I know; Merriam-Webstergives one definition of kickback as :  a sharp violent reaction.It was reported in the local media that there was sharp criticism of this project by local brewers and distillers ,sorry if you missed that.

    • Fred the Piemaker says:

      Because the amount Dart would make from the distillery would swamp the savings on 50% of hotel tax?  Right.  What world are you living in?  The more likely issue is the dump.

  7. Michel says:

    As I try to understand :”Met with Dart CEO and the Premier received a letter that caused him to be optimistsic”. A question comes to mind ? Does Mr. Dart ever appear in person to negotiate himself even with our Premier or Governor ? or simply send a carrot a the end of the stick for his experts to deal with it. I sure hope Mac met him in person for playing monopoly with our Crowns Land and some. Very intriguing and the perfect set up for a best seller ie: “How to own your Island and eliminate the competition “.

    • Anonymous says:

      Mr Dart does not exist in the traditional way. He is a manifestation of fat politiciansand heavy equipment operators dreams

    • Peanuts says:

      "Dart CEO and the Premier" I may be asking too much however! I find something a bit off when dart cant meet with the Premier of my country. That would not happen with a US President or British PM. Rude. I am led to think that dart has a Royality wish. Not to me BoBo.

      • Anonymous says:

        Indeed 07.10, fully agree. Why I just got back from UK where after the budget I wanted a word, so just popped into 10 Downing Street for a natter and cup of tea with Dave. Going to be in DC next weekend, got the Obama's coming for dinner too. It's so easy to do. Mr Dart runs an empire with a turnover much higher than CIG's income. Premier is right to be happy with a letter. Bobo yourself!

    • Anonymous says:

      Duh, Dart is not the CEO Jackie is..

  8. Slowpoke says:

    With Aki back in Court on behalf of the WB ladies, good luck negotiating anything.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Guess all of you will have to wait and see.  It will be interesting to read the spin on this in a few hours. 

  10. Anonymous says:

    No one can 'negotiate' from a point of weakness. They would be 'fool fool' to give up what the UDP gave them on a silver platter. This is what happens when we have people negotiating deals on our behalf that couldn't negotiate their way across the street. After all, who knows, they probably already paid dearly for the gracious terms, conditions and whatever else that was sold/given to them, only the real owners didn't get paid.

    • Anonymous says:

      'Cos we all know what a great negotiator McKeeva was with Cohen & Associates and so on…

      • Anonymous says:

        …and the first rule in showing that you are not negotiating from a point of weakness is to announce to the world that "weez broke!".

  11. Anonymous says:

    here is my take oin the 50% reduction. Double the current rate then give everyone the 50% reduction. case closed. Everybody back to the same level and government makes more money

    • Anon says:

      I would think Dart has some sort of clause in the contract to prevent losing the competitive edge. The guy is not as dumb as he looks. If you thought of it, chances are Dart's lawyers have thought of it before.  I mean the guy made billions by signing agreements. He wasn't born yesterday. He just outsmarted Mac and crew and we will have to live with it.  Next time maybe we should not elect someone with grade 6 education to negotiate multimillon dollar contacts for us.

      • Fred the Piemaker says:

        As dumb as he looks?  How do you know what he looks like when no one else does?

      • Anonymous says:


      • Anonymous says:

        Most of these 6 graders got more forsight, vision and common sense than most of the educated idiots. 

        I have proven that over my 62 years on this earth. You dont believe me..look at David Cameron, Nick Clegg and Ed Miliband. Selling out the UK to the Europeans.All about the big corporations, and large banks, while the poor people suffer.

        These guys all have Harvard style Education…see what i mean? stop putting down the 6 graders!

    • Brain says:

      You are smart.

      are you running in the next election?

    • Anonymous says:

      If Dart hotels are all 5 Star and the cost per room is $600.00 up,  the 50% room tax would surpass what the lower cost per rooms at the 3 star hotels. Government will still win.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Keep in mind when art says they want to "invest more"  what they mean is continue on their goal to buy total control of our country.

  13. Anonymous says:

    How can Dart negotiate with politicians that change their positions based upon political election expediency?

    Political wantabes have realized that Dart is a convienent scape goat and radio political wantabes have learned the same.

    Bash Dart and praise Cayman to get elected seems to be the current political wisdom.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Alden said a whole lot of nothing except that he met with Dart how is this progress?