Faction leaders represented in Parliament met with the new Dutch representative Gerard van der Wulp from the Dutch Ministry of Interior & Kingdom Relations, who is replacing Rob van Maas at the Dutch Head Representation Office in Willemstad, Curacao. Faction leaders were able to discuss exchange views on a host of issues with Wulp. The meeting took place in the House of Parliament’s conference room.
The Ad Hoc Committee of the Rules of Order of Parliament met on Wednesday and the meeting is set to continue on Thursday, September 1.
The Ad Hoc Committee Rules of Order will meet in the General Assembly Chamber at 2.00pm.
Committee members are Members of Parliament (MPs) Hon. Dr. Lloyd Richardson, MP Hon. Patrick Illidge, MP Hon. Roy Marlin, and MP Hon. Sylvia Olivacce-Meyers.
The Central Committee of Parliament will meet three times this week.
The first meeting will be with Professor De Boer concerning the Civil Law Code in the General Assembly Chamber in the House of Parliament on Monday, August 22 at 10.00am.
The second Central Committee meeting of Parliament is for 2.00pm on Monday in the General Assembly Chamber. The meeting is related to certain amendments to the Turn over Tax legislation 1997 and two financial specialists will be present for the meeting.
On Wednesday, August 24, the Central Committee of Parliament will meet with Professor H. den Doelder concerning the Penal Code. This meeting will take place in the General Assembly Chamber at 10.00am.
The meetings on the Civil and Penal Codes are related to 13 laws that were passed over from the former Parliament of the Netherlands Antilles to be finalized by the Parliament of St. Maarten before October 10, 2011.
Central Committee meetings are public and are carried live by St. Maarten Cable TV on Channel 20.
President of Parliament Hon. drs. Gracita Arrindell recently received from the Vice Chairlady of the State Council of Advice (AC) Hon. Mavis Brooks-Salmon the Council’s 2010 Annual Report.
Arrindell said during the meeting that a number of issues were discussed, including the difficulty in finding staff and the procedural process to submit initiative laws. Regular meetings will take place between the Vice Chair of the AC and President of Parliament.
“I believe formal as well as informal communication is very essential between the new high councils of state of the new country, especially at the infant stage of getting these institutions off the ground and up and running. There is a lot of work to be done and everyone has their role to play. Both bodies are in the process of putting personnel in place.
“The AC just as Parliament is looking to hire legal advisors and it’s basically fishing in the same pond for that expertise. The AC is presently working with guidelines from the Advisory Councils of State of Curacao, Aruba and the Kingdom Council.
“Parliament has also sent its first draft initiative law change to the AC according to article 85, paragraph three of the Constitution. According to that article, Parliament presents a draft law to the AC before Parliament takes it into discussion. I was pleased to have met with Brooks-Salmon and her legal advisor,” President of Parliament Hon. Gracita Arrindell said.
The 24-page report covers the first three months of the Council’s operations.
The AC is an independent organ of Government which is anchored in the Constitution of St. Maarten. According to the Constitution, the task of the Advisory Council is to advise the Government and Parliament, when it presents an initiative bill, about proposals of legislation and regulation of or with regard to the country.
The AC comprises of five members including the vice-chair and five extra ordinary members.
Today, Friday August 12, marks International Youth Day (IYD) under the slogan “Change Our World.” The focus has been placed on the role young people are playing and have played during the past eight months in overthrowing non-democratic elected governments.
This year’s International Youth Day also represented the culmination of the International Year of Youth, designated by the United Nations (UN) to comprise the 12-month period between IYD-2010 and IYD-2011, and the 25th anniversary of the first International Year of Youth.
“On this day I would like to wish them much success for the future. We must work more diligently with them by providing the tools and the right framework for our young people to succeed in life.
“The new school year will be opening on Monday, August 15 and I also use this opportunity to wish them, as well as the teachers, school management and staff all the best for the 2011-2012 school year.
“Young people have very good ideas and are often the leading proponents of sustainability and green lifestyles. We need to continue to work with young people on the local level, but also regionally and internationally in expanding their horizons of opportunity and providing for their legitimate demands in various areas of their development.
“Investments in young people today will pay great dividends in a better future for our country. There is much for our young people to be proud of.
“They have the opportunity when compared to many others around the world, to go to school, study abroad, sports facilities, afterschool programs etc.
“However, there continues to be challenges, and as parliamentarians and as government, we must continue to address those challenges, but parents also have their role and responsibilities as well.
“We all need to continue to work together in providing everything that young people need in order for them to be able to continue to blossom in our community and grow together in making St. Maarten what we want it to be together,” President of President Hon. Gracita Arrindell said on Friday in her message on International Youth Day.
On 17 December 1999, the UN General Assembly endorsed the recommendation made by the World Conference of Ministers responsible for Youth which was held in Portugal, that 12 August be declared International Youth Day.
The Central Committee of Parliament will be meeting with a representative of the Netherlands Antilles Development Bank (OBNA) and the Small Business Development Foundation (SMDF).
The first meeting will be with the General Director of OBNA D. Cijntje in the General Assembly Chamber in the House of Parliament on Tuesday at 10.00am.
Cijntje will make a presentation with respect to the current state of affairs regarding OBNA and the financial institutions future plans and country St. Maarten.
At 2.00pm in the General Assembly Chamber, members of the Central Committee will meet with the Executive Director of the SBDF Ludwig Quenniche to discuss the foundations current affairs and projects as well as future plans.
Both meetings are public and will also be carried live by St. Maarten Cable TV Channel 20.
The Central Committee of Parliament will be meeting with the Minister of Justice Hon. Roland Duncan on August 12 with respect to justice matters.
The meeting is scheduled to take place in the General Assembly Chamber in the House of Parliament on Friday at 10.00am.
The Minister will brief members of parliament about the June summit held between the Ministers of Justice of the four Kingdom partners, Holland, Curacao, Aruba and St. Maarten.
“One of the points that the parliamentarians will receive information about is the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that was signed by the four Kingdom partners on human trafficking.
“Another point will be the free movement of persons within the Kingdom,” President of President Hon. Gracita Arrindell said on Wednesday.
Tune in to Channel 20 on St. Maarten Cable TV for live coverage of the meeting.
The Central Committee of Parliament will be meeting with the St. Maarten Insurance Brokers Association (SIBA) on August 11 with respect to the insurance industry.
The meeting is scheduled to take place in the General Assembly Chamber in the House of Parliament on Thursday at 2.00pm.
The SIBA will be highlighting a number of issues including providing information about the current insurance sector.
“Every stakeholder has an opportunity to meet with Parliament where they can bring forth issues that can lead to the betterment of society.
“As I stated a few weeks ago, when parliament returns from recess, it is going to be a very busy time and this is the case since August 8 and will be so for the rest of the year.
“I encourage the public to tune in to Channel 20 on St. Maarten Cable TV and they will be able to see the public sessions of parliament as it takes place. All meetings of parliament are public and broadcasted live unless otherwise indicated,” President of President Hon. Gracita Arrindell said on Tuesday.
The planned Central Committee of Parliament meeting, with a representative of the Netherlands Antilles Development Bank (OBNA) for Tuesday morning, has been postponed for a later date.
The meeting with the Small Business Development Foundation (SMDF) is still scheduled as planned for 2.00pm on Tuesday in the General Assembly Chamber.
Members of the Central Committee will meet with the Executive Director of the SBDF Ludwig Quenniche to discuss the foundations current affairs and projects as well as future plans.
The meeting is public and will also be carried live by St. Maarten Cable TV Channel 20.
The plenary session of Parliament regarding the 2011 national budget will be carried live on Sint Maarten Cable TV Channel 20 on Wednesday, June 29.
The meeting will take place in the General Assembly Chamber at 10.00am and all Ministers are scheduled to be present for the opening.
Minister of Finance Hiro Shigemoto will be the first to address Parliament. He will be followed by the following ministers, Minister of Public Health, Social Development and Labour Cornelius De Weever, Minister of Education, Culture, Youth and Sports Rhoda Arrindell, Minister of Justice Roland Duncan, Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transport and Telecommunications Franklin Meyers, Prime Minister/Minister of General Affairs Sarah Wescot-Williams, and Vice Prime Minister/Minister of Public Housing, Spatial Development, Environment and Public Infrastructure Theo Heyliger.
The two agenda points are incoming documents and the second national ordinance establishing the 2011 national budget for country Sint Maarten including attachments.