On Monday, 12th October, President of Parliament Hon. Dr. Lloyd Richardson, made his position to Parliament by informing the Secretariat of the House of Parliament.
“Given the present and still ongoing political developments, I hereby inform you that I have made the seat of President of the Parliament of Sint Maarten available to whomsoever the Parliament sees fit to assume said post.
“I would also like to thank the members of the Presidium for their untiring cooperation, the secretariat for their unrelenting support, the employees and other related staff for the manner in which they all performed their duties during this period of transition.
“The seat of President of Parliament was not an aspiration of mine, nonetheless my willingness to serve where my country's need of me was the greatest has been and continues to be my passion.
“That being said, I would like to take this moment in our country's history to say to all primarily responsible, that our people, our collective reputation, our country's stability and future are riding perilously on the outcome of these talks. I want to rest on your conscience the full weight of your behavior and your decisions.
“Think about our infant nation first and act with sober maturity and not from a position of personal gain, so that we can emerge with a stronger parliament, council of ministers, taller as politicians resulting eventually in a more peaceful, wiser and more prosperous nation for all our people. May God Almighty place His guiding hand on us all.
“Last but not least, I thank my staff and colleagues for their cooperation and respect shown, I look forward to working with you all until such time that this chapter of my political career would have come to an end. Best Wishes to you and this entire country,” President of Parliament Hon. Dr. Lloyd Richardson stated in his notice to the Secretariat of Parliament.
Copies were also sent to the Governor of Sint Maarten and the Council of Ministers.
The House of Parliament will meet in a plenary session on October 13 to appoint the President and two Vice Presidents.
The public Plenary Session is set for Tuesday, at 9.00am in the General Assembly Chamber of the House at Wilhelmina Straat #1 in Philipsburg.
The agenda point is the appointment of the President and Vice Presidents of Parliament.
This meeting of the House was requested by the National Alliance Faction Members of Parliament (MPs) W.V. Marlin, S.E. Jacobs, Democratic Party Faction S.A. Wescot-Williams, United St. Maarten Party Faction F.G. Richardson, and MP M.A. Lake.
The House of Parliament is open to the general public. Visitors to the House must first report to the Reception Desk in order to be assisted.
For persons visiting the House of Parliament which is not related to the attendance of a Plenary or Central Committee meeting, who either have an appointment with a Member of Parliament (MP) or not, must present themselves at the Reception Desk in the building of the Parliament, Wilhelmina Street # 1, Philipsburg.
Here they are asked to identify themselves by means of a valid Identification Card (ID, Driver’s License, Passport). Using the identification, the personal data of visitor(s), the time of the visit as well as the departure time are recorded by the desk attendant.
The identification document will be held by the attendant until the person completes their visit. This measure is to ensure that at all times it is known who at a certain point in time is in the Parliament building.
The faction staff of the MP concerned is informed by the desk attendant that there is a visitor in the reception hall.
Visitors are allowed to wait in the lobby for up to 30 minutes for an MP. If the MP has not arrived after the 30 minutes, then the visitor is requested to make a new appointment with the MP concerned through the faction staff. An MP may receive visitors in his own office or faction room.
The House of Parliament will meet in an urgent closed door Central Committee meeting on October 14.
The closed door Central Committee meeting is set for Wednesday, at 2.00pm in the General Assembly Chamber of the House at Wilhelmina Straat #1 in Philipsburg.
The agenda point is a discussion on a comprehensive approach of Government to accomplish short term results with regards to the recent spate of crime on Sint Maarten.
In order to have a good functioning parliament, there must be a good functioning organizational secretariat of the Parliament of Sint Maarten, which is a department within Parliament that provides legal, administrative, and logistic support to the Members of Parliament (MPs) as a whole.
Back in June 2015, the Central Committee of Parliament discussed the “Function Book” of the Parliament Secretariat, and agreed to the content. A Plenary session of the House was held on August 6 and in that session the “Function Book” for the secretariat was approved.
Effective September 1st, 2015, the “Function Book” is being used to guide the daily running of the secretariat of the House of Parliament, and the previous document from October 10, 2010 is no longer in use.
Prior to Sint Maarten becoming a country in 2010, a number of organizational resolutions for different sectors within Government were established based on the Organizational Ordinance Island Territory Sint Maarten.
As of October 10, 2010, the legal basis was turned into a National Ordinance and sectors became ministries. Each ministry had a “Function Book” that listed the tasks for each department or section within the ministry.
Since the inception of the Parliament of Sint Maarten, the function book secretariat has been in existence. The presidium throughout the years discussed on several occasions the revision of this “Function Book” for the secretariat.
The Presidium of Parliament comprising of the President and the two Vice Presidents, requested a human resources assessment of the “Function Book” for the Parliamentary Secretariat in early 2015 to start up the process to revise the aforementioned book.
The Presidium of Parliament comprises of the President of Parliament Dr. Lloyd Richardson, 1st Vice President MP Leona Marlin-Romeo, and 2nd Vice President MP Cornelius de Weever.
The objective of the human resources assessment was to gain insight into which functions were necessary for the proper functioning of the secretariat, and based on the outcome, some adjustments were made to the “Function Book.”
A separate “Function Book” for the Cabinet of the President of Parliament was also established on August 6. This function book contains the functions of Secretary and Driver, and the positions are defined in the aforementioned document.
The Secretariat of Parliament calls for 14 staff members. The positions within the secretariat formation plan are: Secretary General; 1st Secretary General/Legislative Lawyer; 2nd Secretary General; Section Head Operational Support; Section Head Administration and Facility Services; Management Assistant; Communication Worker/Media Interaction Designer; Information and Communication Technology Worker; Records and Information Management Worker; Public Relations Worker/Assistant to the Secretary Generals; Administrative Worker A; Messenger/Concierge; Administrative Worker C/Receptionist; and a Restauratief Worker.
The Management Team comprises of the three Secretary Generals.
The Central Committee of Parliament will meet in public session on October 5th.
The public Central Committee meeting is set for Monday, at 10.00am in the General Assembly Chamber of the House at Wilhelmina Straat #1 in Philipsburg.
The agenda: is the establishment of the draft proposal regarding Double Taxation between the Netherlands and Sint Maarten.
Members of the public are invited to the House of Parliament to attend parliamentary deliberations.
The Central Committee of Parliament will meet in public session on October 2nd. This session of the House is a continuation from the initial meeting.
The public Central Committee meeting is set for Friday, at 11.00am in the General Assembly Chamber of the House at Wilhelmina Straat #1 in Philipsburg.
The agenda point is a draft National Ordinance related to Public Health Care.
There will be 11 Permanent/Ad Hoc Committee meetings of Parliament on October 2nd.
The Committee meetings are set for Friday, starting at 9.00am and with the last committee scheduled to start at 10.40am in the General Assembly Chamber of the House at Wilhelmina Straat #1 in Philipsburg.
The agenda for all committee meetings of Parliament is the appointment of the Chair person and Vice Chair. Each committee will meet in session for 10 minutes.
The House of Parliament is open to the general public. Plenary and Central Committee meetings can be attended by members of the community unless otherwise indicated.
A dress code is in place and the public is reminded to adhere to the requirements when visiting the House of Parliament whether it’s to attend a public meeting or to meet with a Member of Parliament of faction staff. Persons who visit Parliament are reminded to visit the reception desk in the lobby where they would be assisted further.
Proper attire is required by all including the media when visiting and attending meetings of the House of Parliament. It is strictly prohibited to anyone who is in the public tribune to use mobile phones, video cameras, laptops, etc. during the meeting.
For the public, the dress code is wearing clothing that is neat, clean along with appropriate footwear. No shorts or slippers are allowed. For formal events and other special occasions, the President may stipulate a special dress code such as a dark suit.
For the media, the rule applies that with a jacket without a tie, members of the media have access to the press room. If a member of the press comes without a jacket, he must take a seat in the public tribune.
For invited guests, proper attire could be described as formal and semi-formal wear. You can envision in that case the European model of “jacket and tie” and the models as we described under the term “Nehru jacket” (with the so-called stand up collar) appearing in the Caribbean region, the “Mau Zedong jacket”, originating from China, the safari suit and the Guayabera which is also very often worn in the Caribbean and Latin American region, as well as the “liquiliqui”-model that is often seen in Venezuela. Provided that these models all have long sleeves they meet the qualification of proper attire.
For the meetings of the central committee the requirement is that the clothing can be a “jacket without a tie”, or the above mentioned models, the latter with short sleeves.
For female invited guests smart casual and also business casual applies. If the ladies wear skirts, then it should be at least knee length. It should be clear that wearing provocative clothing in this case is not permitted; thus no tight fitting, no see-through, nor revealing clothing. With regard to footwear, modern fashionable slippers are allowed.
The Permanent Committee of Kingdom Affairs and Inter-parliamentary Relations (CKAIR) of Parliament will meet in session on September 18.
The Permanent Committee of Kingdom Affairs and Inter-parliamentary Relations meeting is set for Friday at 9.00am in the General Assembly Chamber of the House at Wilhelmina Straat #1 in Philipsburg.
The five point agenda are approval of the decision list CKAIR Parliamentary Year 2014-2015, no 15; incoming documents CKAIR; draft law change regarding Double Taxation Regulation between Sint Maarten and the Netherlands; proposals for agenda points for IPKO January 2016; follow-up Inter-parliamentary Kingdom Consultation (IPKO) and Tripartite May 2015.
Sint Maarten – An urgent Plenary Session of the House of Parliament that was scheduled for September 9 will take place on September 18.
Minister of Public Housing, Spatial Planning, Environment and Infrastructure (Ministry VROMI) Hon. Claret Connor will be present for the public sitting of the House.
The public Plenary Session is set for Friday, at 10.30am in the General Assembly Chamber of the House at Wilhelmina Straat #1 in Philipsburg.
The agenda point is the dumpsite (landfill) in Philipsburg and the plans for a waste to energy system for the country’s garbage problems.
This urgent plenary session of the House was initially requested by the National Alliance (NA) faction Members of Parliament (MPs) Hon. William Marlin and Hon. MP Silveria Jacobs, and the Democratic Party (DP) faction MP Hon. Sarah Wescot-Williams.