With the rainy season here, the concerns surrounding flood prone areas has returned at the forefront of residents and farmers. We have heard recently from Mayor of Belize City, Darrell Bradley on what the council is doing to deal with the flood prone areas. Love News also spoke with Mayor Kevin Bernard for Orange Walk Town to find out what areas of concerns are there in that northern municipality and how it is being addressed.
“I can tell you that in early 2012 when I first became mayor we had a lot of flooding issues but we went there and started to address the issue. From early on this year we were cleaning drains, maintaining drains and we continue to do so. So like our flood prone areas like the Marcus Canul and the San Lorenzo housing site area and the lower Louisiana area those are the places we have been focusing on in terms of making the drains are properly running, the drains are clean and again we stress on the same issue clean Orange Walk because that is the reason why if sometimes the drains are clogged it’s not because the drains are not maintained but because of the garbage that people throw on the ground and it ends up in the drain clogging the drain so sometimes those are the little problems but we have not had any major issue as of over the last two years. There are some areas that we cannot do anything because of the terrain, the level, people have built homes in low lands and have not developed their lands and so those are the kinds of things we were talking about working on but yes we have been focusing on maintaining our drains and cleaning the drains so that we have a good flow of running water so that people are not affected.”
As it relates to the street repairs, Mayor Bernard says their plans continue for better thoroughfares and Area Representative for Orange Walk North, Gaspar Vega may be contributing to the infrastructural improvements in the near future.
“We recently paved Oleander Street and we are now looking about starting the pavement of Orchid Drive. That is a very important road because it links the medical plaza to the hospital and back and forth there are a lot of patients that travel between the hospital and that road and of course it’s another major outlet. What I want to say to the general public as well is that there may be some inconveniences because we have recently signed an agreement for the paving of almost ten other major outlets in the town. These streets include Progress Street, San Andres Street, Munoz Lane even though I understand that Tate and Munoz Lane may be done through the office of the Former Deputy Prime Minister but if that comes to fruition then we already have identified two more streets that we will be doing under that agreement because we initially had 12 streets listed out but we had to cut down on two and if indeed they are doing those two then we are going to approach the other two. Like I said it includes also Betilla’s Lane, Santa Ana Street, we are going to be fixing the Cinderella Street. We are hoping that in early January as well we would be able to resurface both Bakers and Main Street because those are the main streets in town and it will create a link within all the other areas because we’ve had several other links within all the other areas because we have had several other works done in other streets earlier this year like the Mahogany and the Sapodilla Street, we did the resurfacing of Saines Alley so there is a continuous work program taking place in Orange Walk and all of these are being done and financed by the taxpayers of Orange Walk.”
Kevin Bernard has been serving as the Mayor for Orange Walk Town since 2012.