A total of $171,834.78. in wage is said to be owed to employees of the government owned Prospect Reef Resort. This announcement was made by Premier and Minister for Finance Hon. Andrew Fahie during the 25 July sitting of the House of Assembly.
The Premier who was responding to a question from Opposition Member and Third District Representative Hon. Julian Fraser noted that the staff at the damaged resort have not been paid since August 2018.
Hon. Fahie who alluded to the fact that Hon. Fraser has brought the matter up in the House before stated that he looked into the matter when he took office in February this year. This inquiry the Premier said found that the payment for the Prospect Reef Resort was inadvertently not accounted for in the 2019 budget. Nonetheless, the BVI Leader indicated that all efforts are being made to have all the employees of Prospect Reef paid in full no later than by the end of August.
In fact, the Premier explained that a review of the organizational and operational structure of Prospect Reef is currently being undertaken in order to determine a more economical way forward.
Prospect Reef Situation Mentioned Before
This was the second time that the Third District Representative was raising the matter of the Prospect Reef staff to the Government. The previous mention was made by Hon. Fraser during his budget debate contribution on 26 April.
In making the case for the security staff to be paid Hon. Fraser said: “Believe it or not, there are employees – it got three security guards down there … and these security guards are not being paid. The last time they got paid was August, but they religiously go to work and seemingly no matter who they talk to, they cannot get paid,” Hon. Fraser told the House of Assembly.
It was explained that the security officers ensure that no one takes up residence on the property: “I understand what they are guarding is against vagrants, people might try to take up residence there, so they trying to keep them out… We have a lot of people without homes, without place to live in the territory and that might be a nice place for them to consider.”
“Premier, I think this is under your ministry. I am saying to you that these people are people too and they have to live,” Hon Fraser added.