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Getting to know the Destination Management Organisation

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Dana Malcolm’s Q&A with Josephine Connolly, TCI Minister of Tourism

 

Q:  In terms of the partnership, who has the controlling stake?  Private sector or government?

A: The TCI Destination Management Organisation (DMO) is a Non-Profit Organisation (NPO) whose governance will be under a Board of Directors.  It will be staffed and run on a day-to-day basis by a management team and support staff.

There will be an Assembly of all partners, which will have the role of identifying and appointing the members of the Board of Directors.

The Board of Directors will be composed of 15 members including the Chairman. These members must come from the public and private sectors.  The recommendation is that at least 7 members must be representatives of the public sector.

It is important to note that tourism policy is set by the Government. That will not change. That’s the role of Government. In addition, a Department of Tourism Regulations will be created within the Ministry of Tourism which will be responsible for the certification of the tourism businesses and will assist the Minister in the definition of new tourism policies and regulations.  This new Department will have a staff of 10.

How the funds allocated to the DMO are spent will be based on recommendations from the Board and presented to the Minister in formal detail.  The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism will be on the Board of Directors by virtue of his/her office.

The DMO will follow the TCI Public Management Funds Ordinance which all entities receiving public funds must follow.  The DMO must produce an Annual Report about on the objectives achieved, any deviation from the objectives, and how the financial resources have been used. That report will be submitted to the Minister of Tourism for verification and final approval.

Remember too, that the DMO is a Non-Profit Organization.  Under the law, no profit-sharing and no dividends can go to any members. Some activities of the DMO will generate income.   Any profits made by the DMO must go back into the DMO’s operations and marketing of the destination.

Q: What will the structure of the DMMO look like? Will TC Islanders be well represented?

A:  The DMO will operate through four different Departments that have specific duties. These departments – Marketing, Destination Development, Finance & Operations, and Quality Assurance – will implement activities that will benefit all tourism businesses and stimulate the sustainable tourism development of the entire country.  For the operation to be effective and totally inclusive, Tourism Improvement Districts have been identified, encompassing every segment of TCI and each District will have a seat on the Board of Directors.  The entire operation is designed to be inclusive of the population of TCI.  Total staff of the DMO, excluding Assembly and Board of Directors, will be 25 highly qualified specialists the first year up to 49 when the DMO is fully operative at year 5.

 

Q:  Who are the consultants working on the project currently?

A:  TCIG has contracted Target Euro Srl to assist the Government in the transition from the Tourist Board to the Destination Management Organisation and the Department of Tourism Regulation.

Target Euro Srl is an Italian consultancy firm, founded in 1997, specialised in the realisation of multi-disciplinary projects with an emphasis on tourism and economic development.

The firm has developed and/or assisted 13 DMOs and Tourism Regulatory Authorities in Latin America, the Caribbean and Europe (see map).

In addition, Target Euro Srl has implemented more than 30 tourism development projects in Latin America and the Caribbean region, and more than 120 tourism development projects worldwide.

For this project, Target Euro Srl has organised a multidisciplinary team composed of 15 international and national highly qualified experts (see organogram below).

Government

TCI GOVERNMENT ANNOUNCES JUDICIAL APPOINTMENT

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#TurksandCaicos, May 21, 2024 – Ms. Patricia Arana has been sworn in on13 May 2024 as Resident Magistrate, Grand Turk.  She first joined the Judiciary of the Turks and Caicos Islands as Registrar of the Magistrate’s Court in April 2022.

Prior to taking up the position of Registrar of the Magistrate’s Court, she was the Deputy Registrar General at the Supreme Court of her native Belize in Belize City. She started her judicial career as a Magistrate in 2010 and was promoted to the position of Senior Magistrate in 2015. As Senior Magistrate, she worked in several districts in Belize, and acted as Chief Magistrate on several occasions.  She was also within that period, seconded for two years as Legal Counsel to the Financial Intelligence Unit of Belize.

Ms. Arana is a graduate of the University of the West Indies where she obtained a Bachelor of Laws (Hons) Degree, and a graduate of the Norman Manley Law School, Jamaica, where she obtained her Legal Education Certificate. There she distinguished herself when she received the H.H. Dunn Memorial Prize for Legal Drafting and Interpretation.

Regionally, Ms. Arana currently serves as an Executive Member of the Caribbean Association of Judicial Officers (CAJO) on behalf of the Judiciary of the Turks and Caicos Islands. She is also an active member of the Caribbean Association of Women Judges (CAWJ), and the National Garifuna Council (NGC) Orange Walk Branch.

In the Turks and Caicos Islands, Ms. Arana has since her appointment in 2022, served in various capacities: ADR Administrator and lately a member of the Mediation Committee, a member of the Breach Process Rules Committee, Justice of the Peace Vetting Panel, Justice of the Peace Disciplinary Panel, and Election Adjudicator.

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US CONGRESSIONAL DELEGATION

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#TurksandCaicos, May 20, 2024 – The Governor’s Office can confirm that Her Excellency the Governor Dileeni Daniel-Selvaratnam and the Honourable Premier Charles Washington Misick will this morning receive a US Congressional delegation, who have requested a meeting to discuss the recent arrests of US nationals for possession of ammunition offences.

The US delegation, which arrived yesterday evening, was met by Protocol officials and is due to depart this afternoon.

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PDM 10 All-Island Candidates a Surprising Slate dubbed ‘the Avengers’

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Dana Malcolm 

Staff Writer 

The Turks and Caicos Islands need saving according to Edwin Astwood, Opposition Leader and he’s assembled his ‘Avengers’ to do it; a team of 10 district candidates who were unveiled on Monday, May 6 to contest the 2025 general elections. 

“We the PDM want to be those champions for you. We want to be your avenging team to lift the country back up,” said Astwood who is the incumbent for ED 2, Grand Turk South.

The Candidates in question were all allowed to speak:

ED 1 Grand Turk North candidate George Lightbourne, former PNP member and minister now stands ratified by the PDM and said “I am fully aware of the issues affecting our people and fully prepared to tackle them.”

ED 3 South Caicos candidate Hynetta ‘Karen’ Forbes made a vow, “To you the people of South Caicos I promise to be a positive change and an advocate for empowerment for all— to make up for the lack and neglect we have endured over the years.”

ED 4 candidate, contesting North and Middle Caicos, Denaz Williams said “I believe in good representation so try me and I guarantee you will love me.”

ED 5 Leeward and Long Bay hopeful Keith Cox said “I want to make sure my efforts go to the betterment of Leeward and Long Bay, it’s time for a change.”

ED 6 candidate for The Bight, Audric Skippings, who returns from his loss in 2021 said “I pledge to be the voice of the people, the driving force behind positive change, and the chairman of progress in our district.”

ED 7 candidate for Cheshire Hall and Richmond Hill, is Rose Higgs who swore  “I am committed to serve as someone committed to changing politics and how some politicians behave after we elect them into power, I am your Beacon of Hope, I am going to parliament!”

ED 8 Blue Hills candidate Anthony Walkin maintained “The ideas I have for the constituency will change Blue Hills— no longer will you be suffering” he swore. 

ED 9 candidate for Five Cays, popular firebrand church pastor and businessman is how many know the energetic Bryant Cox, now approved on the PDM ticket he promised “ED9 it’s our time, I stand before you a man of action ready to work for you.”

Finally, ED 10 candidate for Wheeland Vaden Delroy Williams, who lost to newcomer Kyle  Knowles, now-Minister of Public Safety and Utilities by only a few votes in 2021, said “I am back because you have asked me to come back—because of the love I have for my people…”

They join the already announced all-island candidate team of Robert Been, Ruth Ariza, Karen Malcolm, Sean Astwood, and Ralph Higgs.

Sean Astwood, the former Five Cays members and deputy premier in the Sharlene Robinson administration, had missed the PDM’s all-island slate announcement on March 22; during the constituency candidates roll out had his say.

“Returning to politics was not an easy decision for me and I didn’t make it lightly— I came back because I believe we have a responsibility to stand up for what is right,” said Astwood.

Opposition Leader Edwin Astwood was especially excited to unveil the array of candidates having been the sole elected representative for the past four years. 

“Being in the fight alone these three and a half years wasn’t easy— I was in this battle alone but now you gave me 15 people, they had trouble when it was just me so imagine now with this team coming,” he exclaimed.

Astwood was the only PDM representative to be re-elected in February 2021 when the current PNP Administration gave them a historic walloping, storming their way to victory 14 to 1. Seven of those 2021 candidates including the party’s leader have returned to fight again in the upcoming elections which are constitutionally due in early 2025.

Ezra Taylor, National Party Chairman is convinced that the ‘rescue team’ will serve the Turks and Caicos to its fullest potential.

“Real representation, meritocracy, and honest engagement with our people will be the order of the day in the governance of the Turks and Caicos islands,” he continued “Our candidates embody the values that define us as a country, integrity, compassion, and a relentless dedication to the common good.”

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