Caribbean News in Brief

Haiti bill heading for President’s signature

A bill to help Haiti rebuild after its devastating earthquake was headed yesterday to President Barack Obama for his signature.

The bill seeks to open the US market to more clothes made in the Caribbean nation. The US Senate approved the bipartisan Haiti Economic Lift Programme Act late on Thursday.

That vote came one day after the House of Representatives approved the measure.

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus said in a statement that improving access to the US market for Haitian textile and apparel products “is a widely-supported, common-sense approach to provide long-term support for the lasting recovery in Haiti”.

More CCTV cameras

The authorities in St Kitts and Nevis say they are casting a security net over the country’s capital, Basseterre, by putting in more Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) cameras in strategic locations.

A National Security Ministry official says they intend to mount 50 cameras throughout the capital over the next several weeks. The move is part of the government’s anti-crime initiative. Officials say they have “an emergency where violent crime is concerned”.

Mangrove wetlands disappearing

Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary Inc. says a new environmental study critical of the Barbadian government shows that the key Graeme Hall mangrove wetland on the island is disappearing.

According to a release from the group, outside pollution and poor water quality are key factors fuelling that problem.

Sanctuary officials also say it has suffered a 77% reduction in salinity in the past ten years “due to an inoperative government-run sluice gate”.

“The study confirms that government-controlled pollution is being dumped into the wetland. Despite our formal offers of technical and financial assistance to the government, there has been no response,” the Graeme Hall statement said.

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