The Georgetown Mayor and City Council (M&CC) is expected to make a presentation to Cabinet next week in relation to the controversial amended parking meter By-laws.This was revealed by Communities Minister Ronald Bulkan on Wednesday, who said following that presentation, Government will make a final determination about the project going forward.Bulkan said he has always been on record as supporting the initiative of having parking meters, which is intended to help to restore order to the current chaos faced in the city when it comes to parking.“…the contract that is engaged in, has to be one that is not burdensome to the population. The benefits have to be equitably shared between the concessionaireA parking meter in downtown Georgetownand the Council,” he added.Bulkan noted that a lot of those features were not present in the initial contract, and acknowledged that is precisely why the By-laws had to be rescinded by Government.“It is our hope that the amended contract satisfies the concerns that were expressed by the Ministry of Finance and by the Attorney General’s Chambers… this review and assessment will be done by Cabinet at its next meeting following a presentation by the Georgetown municipality,” he added.Based on a unanimous decision taken on April 4, 2018, the M&CC approved the amended parking meter By-laws. However, only two Councillors opposed the By-laws at the time. Khame Prakash Sharma and Bishram Kuppen argued that the By-laws were in support of a contract that still remains unfair to citizens.The amended By-laws were then presented to the Minister in May 2018 for consideration.The amendments proposed that persons pay $150 per hour and $800 for eight hours of parking in Georgetown. Meanwhile, residents of the city would be issued with a restricted residential pass for free parking from 17:00-19:00h Monday to Friday, while parking will be free on Saturdays.Under the modified contract, both parties had agreed to have an oversight committee set up to monitor, review, and manage the project. The committee is expected to have three representatives from M&CC, three from Smart City Solutions (SCS), and one third party also involved in the process.During renegotiations between M&CC and SCS, the subject of shared profit and contractual obligations were discussed, and it was agreed to have it remain the same being the 20/80 for a period of 20 years. It was also disclosed that in the event of arbitration, the proceedings would be held in Miami, instead of here.Rejecting parking metersDespite these new proposals, the Georgetown Chambers of Commerce and Industry Inc (GCCI) and the Movement Against Parking Meters (MAPM) have both rejected the project’s return. From the onset, MAPM and the business community have been opposed to the installation of parking metres in the city.The Opposition People’s Progressive Party (PPP) has also maintained its non-support for this initiative.Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo still believes that the metering system is not the best arrangement to assist with the reduction or organisation of traffic within the country’s capital city.Jagdeo said the PPP will continue to oppose the initiative for several reasons, chief of them, the fact that the initial contract was flawed. He had also raised concerns about the persistence and continuous interest to have this project re-implemented even when the company is faced with several known controversies.Jagdeo had pitched a proposal where the M&CC could gain more income and treated the parking of vehicles in a much different way as they did before.“The City Council… all they need is maybe 1000 gallons of paint and go around and mark every area in the city and once per month, sell a sticker for $1000 or $2000 and people pay you and they park anywhere in the city once they have the sticker on the vehicle itself,” he explained.That plan, he claimed, is more affordable and takes away the huge administrative cost that the M&CC would have to incur were they to go ahead with reintroducing the parking meters.
Catholicism Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email Instagram apostasy stirs controversy over Christian ‘influencers’ August 30, 2019 By: Adelle M. Banks AMBankstw News • Photos of the Week News Share This! Adelle M. Banks AMBankstw Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email,(RNS) — The Freedom From Religion Foundation has dropped its long-running fight against the clergy housing allowance permitted by the U.S. government.“We have full confidence in the legal merits of our challenge of the discriminatory pastoral housing allowance privileges,” the Wisconsin-based atheist watchdog announced last week (June 14).“We did not feel the same confidence, however, in how the current Supreme Court would rule in our case, had we appealed. After ‘counting heads,’ we concluded that any decision from the current court would put the kibosh on challenging the housing allowance for several generations.”The FFRF said it hopes its strategy will allow the issue to be reconsidered when the high court has a different makeup.In March, the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the allowance was constitutional. A lower court had ruled in FFRF’s favor. But a three-judge circuit panel reversed a Wisconsin judge’s decision.RELATED: Clergy housing allowance is constitutional, appeals court rules“Any financial interaction between religion and government — like taxing a church, or exempting it from tax — entails some degree of entanglement,” wrote Judge Michael Brennan. “But only excessive entanglement violates the Establishment Clause.”He added that the allowance also is not forbidden by the free exercise clause of the First Amendment.Under IRS regulations that date to 1954, clergy do not have to pay taxes on housing that is supplied in a parsonage by their congregation or on the portion of their salary that they use for housing expenses.FFRF also challenged the housing allowance in 2013, winning in a lower court. But an appeals court also overturned that ruling.Becket, a nonprofit law firm that focuses on religious liberty, celebrated the FFRF’s dropping of its legal fight over the parsonage issue. It had represented a Chicago church and religious leaders who supported the allowance.Luke Goodrich, Becket’s vice president and senior counsel, said the tax code exempted ministers as well as members of the military and others in special categories.“The court rightly recognized that providing this kind of equal treatment to churches is perfectly constitutional, and churches should be allowed to serve the neediest members of their communities without the tax man breathing down their neck,” he said. Share This! As Amazon burns, Vatican prepares for summit on region’s faith and sustainabilit … August 30, 2019 By: Adelle M. Banks AMBankstw Adelle M. Banks Adelle M. Banks, production editor and a national reporter, joined RNS in 1995. An award-winning journalist, she previously was the religion reporter at the Orlando Sentinel and a reporter at The Providence Journal and newspapers in the upstate New York communities of Syracuse and Binghamton.,Load Comments,Canada’s Drew Marshall, ‘raw and real’ Christian radio host, ends hi … TagsBecket clergy housing allowance court Freedom From Religion Foundation homepage featured lawsuit parsonage allowance Supreme Court Top Story,You may also like Photos of the Week August 30, 2019 Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email New report urges congregations to aid family caregivers Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn ReddIt Email,About the authorView All Posts Share This! Share This! Share This! By: Adelle M. Banks AMBankstw