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Screen_Shot_2016-07-06_at_8.21.20_PMDespite the lack of financial assistance from Central Government the Orange Walk Town Council has been carrying out its mandate. While it has been quite a challenge the council has been able to bring infrastructural development to Orange Walk by working hand in hand with the community.

The most recent task at hand is the upgrading of ten heavily trafficked streets across town. And if you live in Orange Walk you might have already witnessed the work in progress.

Kevin Bernard – Mayor, Orange Walk Town

“We decided to go with a financing arrangement and through this private contractor we have been able to work out a long term plan which we will see the rehabilitation the paving of several major outlets of our town, we are here on San Andres Street and we know this street was really broken up and just like this Bethias is being work out simultaneously and we are doing also other areas on our won but we will definitely see the paving of almost ten new streets as well the council is working on getting in partnership together with the business community on Orchid Drive, we should see Orchid Drive fully paved in a few weeks’ time, I should say within a month we should see that street paved, Oleander Street would be getting its second coat along with these ones that we are working on right now, and so it is all about getting our street infrastructure improved and these are streets that have key impact, people travel on them every day back and forth and we need to ensure that we restore back our main arteries in our town but at the same time we have been identifying other areas and listening to people concerns for example San Francisco Street that we are working right now the council is doing that; we are ripping, scarifying, preparing and we do hope to get it paved but right now the resource we have does not allow us to do it right away so we are working on trying to see how we could partner as well with the Area Rep. to get that section of the road because there are several areas of San Francisco that needs attention so we are working on this first phase now, likewise we did Stadium Street, there is a section on Stadium Street that we have recently compacted just yesterday we want to go in and prime that and we want to go in and do some manual paving on those areas and then there is the George Price boulevard and of course in the East there is a section on Liberty Avenue that we want to go in and address, there is Rio Bravo Street that we would really want to see sometime within this year or next year that that street would be paved that is another major outlet that connects the people from Palmar Boundary down to Sarstoon and as well they have this Riverside street off Sapodilla.”

The rehabilitation of these streets come at a high price yet its tax payers money that is being well spent, says Mayor of Orange Walk Kevin Bernard.

Kevin Bernard – Mayor, Orange Walk Town

“The overall project will definitely costs us no less than a million dollars but we are looking at some very good amount of street that will be address and so you are talking about eight to ten years in terms of financing this at small payments every month and so we are very grateful also for the private contractor who have allowed us to be able to do so and like is said apart from this arrangement the council is also engaging in other areas for example the Oleander Street that we have done the first coat we will be putting down the second coat, Orchid Drive we are going to be putting down the first coat and again we are talking about San Francisco and Stadium Street and other areas in the East that we need to address.”

But while ten streets are now being reconstructed there is no doubt that there is always room for more improvement hence why Mayor Bernard encourages Orange Walkenos to continue paying their taxes.

Kevin Bernard – Mayor, Orange Walk Town

“I encourage and I want to thank our Orange Walkenos who have constantly been paying their taxes and I encourage our other residence those who have refused to pay their taxes or they are not paying their taxes I have said it before on this medium and I have said it on Despierta Belice that we are going after our taxes and if we have to take people to court we will do so but we don’t want to but at the end of the day people demand services; they want their drains clean, they want their street side chopped, they want their garbage picked up, they want their street paved but we cannot do everything with the little money that we are collecting the tax base is so minimal, it would take us thirty or fifty years to collect that money to just do a hundred and thirteen streets in this town for us to do a major investment in this town you need no less that thirty to forty million dollars and we don’t have that money we will never get that money and so we need the taxpayers to contribute, we need the taxpayers to start to ensure that to come in and pay their taxes and those who owe to please come in and pay your taxes and that is how we would see development.”

Orange Walkenos and visitors are advised to drive with caution especially when travelling in the areas where work is being conducted.

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