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Deputy Speaker says FSC given too much power in new Trust legislation

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Providenciales, 26 Jan 2016 – A strong caution came during House of Assembly debate yesterday from Opposition At Large Member, Hon Josephine Connolly during that first reading of the Trust Companies Licensing and Supervision Bill, 2015.

Hon Connolly reminded the House Speaker that the Premier had promised that the financial services industry would not be tampered with in a way that it gives the FSC unchecked power to alter regulations.

“Mr. Speaker I seem to remember the Honorable Premier stating at a previous meeting that we cannot put the finance industry in a position that when they wake up in the morning fees or regulatory amounts have been changed. Well, Mr. Speaker, it seems to me that “at any time” certainly includes first thing in the morning.”

The legislation is proposing, according to Deputy House Speaker Connolly, who is also a businesswoman that the FSC would have the policy power to boss around the commercial sector if it wanted to.

“I could describe this ordinance, somewhat tongue in cheek, as a stealthy, non violent coup d’état!

Hon Connolly pointed to Section 15 of the bill. “Section 15, page 15, entitled “Maintenance of Paid Up Capital”. Initially in part (a) the reader is directed towards the code………. an amount certain. But Mr. Speaker the story does not end there. Part (b) says the FSC can increase the share capital requirement …..and I quote “at any time”.

Connolly went on to draw reference to other areas of the proposed ordinance that gives the Financial Services Commission the power to change fees sporadically, citing also that the ‘code’ is mentioned 57 times in the bill.

Her recommendation to avoid, what she called ‘the absolute discretionary power of the FSC’ was for the Attorney General to explain and revamp.

She closed with some statistics to the Speaker; one that the FSC has grown in staff size by 400% between 2003 to 2015 but that Trust companies have fled this jurisdiction; a decrease from 20 to 11 between 2008 and 2015, according to the recent IMF report.

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Dog Tales to rescue 500 dogs from the Turks and Caicos

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#TurksandCaicos, June 25, 2022 – Stray dogs in the Turks and Caicos will be getting a new lease on life in the coming months as Dog Tales Rescue will be coming to the islands. Up to 500 stray Dogs will be recovered from Grand Turk and flown to Canada in a bid to control the dog population and give the existing strays better lives. The visit has been approved by the Turks and Caicos Islands government who revealed the project in a cabinet meeting on May 31st.

Dog Tales rescue is a Canadian-based rescue mostly focusing on dogs, cats, and horses. The sanctuary is massive, sitting on over 50 acres of land. It was started in 2014 by husband and wife duo Rob and Danielle Eden-Scheinberg.  The animals at Dog Tales Rescue get the 5-star treatment (as they should!) while they wait to be adopted into their forever homes.  The rescue provides a space for neglected and abused dogs to heal with resources including kilometers of walking trails, therapy pools, a grooming spa, and medical care if needed.  Dog Tales does not put dogs down, those who are not adopted immediately remain with the sanctuary permanently.  Since 2014 more than 2000 dogs have passed through the sanctuary.

Rather than kennels the dogs at Dog Tale have rooms that they share or occupy alone and the sanctuary really jazzes up the spaces making them as luxurious as possible.  The volunteers at the sanctuary also actively use social media to campaign for potential adoptees by doing photoshoots to entice families to take the chance to adopt animals. Soon strays from the Turks and Caicos will be in that number.  You can see Dog Tales’ most recent photoshoot here.

Dog Tales even had a TV show back in 2018 that lasted for 2 seasons!

The TCIG says they will provide “logistical and regulatory support” for the program but Dog Tales will be funding the recovery and everything else on their own. You can donate to Dog Tales here

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Health

Moderna & Pfizer approved for toddlers in US

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#USA, June 25, 2022 – Toddlers can now be vaccinated with either Moderna or Pfizer in the United States following the US Food and Drug Administration’s Advisory Committee vote to authorize the jabs for the youngest humans.

Some 2.5 million vaccines were ordered for these youngsters from Pfizer and 1.3 million are on order from Moderna.

The authorization committee voted unanimously on both vaccines and it comes as a relief to millions of parents who opted to keep their children away from family gatherings, even school

The lowest age a US resident can now get vaccinated is 6 months, Pfizer says their shot is ready for children six months to four years old and Moderna goes one year higher at 6 months to 5 years.  Both Pfizer and Moderna say the toddlers will need boosters in the future.

As of June 2, there have been 442 children between the ages of 0-4 years old who have died as a result of Covid-19 in the United States.

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Education

TCI Agriculture launches Plant Clinic

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#TurksandCaicos, June 25, 2022 – These days anything can be online, even a plant clinic! The Turks and Caicos Islands Department of Agriculture wants to help budding and experienced farmers with any plant issues they may have and their new Online Plant Clinic is their solution to help as many Islanders as possible.

Launched on Thursday, June 16 the clinic will operate through Facebook. Individuals with sick plants or pest issues will be required to take a photo of the issue and upload that photo to the department of Agriculture’s Facebook page.

Answers to issues will be given once a month, on every third Thursday, via a public video so all Islanders can have access. The launch was attended by Chief Plant Protection Officer-CPPO Roneta Huntley Thomas, Director of Agriculture Wilhelmina Kissoonsingh, Minister of Agriculture Josephine Connolly, and Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture Mrs. Cheryl Ann Jones.

Connolly urged residents to “grow your own food and grow TCI.”

Attendees of the launch were allowed to participate in games trying to identify different diseases for a chance at prizes. Residents can now immediately start sending in their photos on the Facebook page.

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