BTIA President resigns, special meeting called to deal with situation

At a regular meeting of the Ambergris Caye Belize Tourism Industry Association (BTIA), six members of the 50 member plus organization and 2 board members learned that chapter President Einer Gomez was submitting his resignation. Gomez cited the difficulties he had experienced over the past months to motivate the board and membership to more actively participate in the association's activities as the reason for his resignation. He commented that more members need to take active roles in the association in order for goals and projects to be carried out. Gomez said the problem was not a new one, that for years the chapter had been counting on the same handful of people to get things done.

An update was given on the agenda for the General Meeting of the National BTIA, to be held this Saturday, December 13 at the Belize Biltmore Plaza Hotel. A resolution to amend the constitution with regard to proxy voting will be presented for final ratification. If ratified, the amendment will require a person wishing to vote by proxy to have his affidavit assigning his proxy witnessed by a J.P. The resolution also limits the amount of proxies a person can vote to only one. The restructuring of the BTIA will also be on the agenda as well as other current business.

A discussion followed regarding the poor condition of the streets, roads and properties in San Pedro Town that have accumulated trash and garbage. It was suggested that people be fined for not cleaning up their properties as was done many years ago. A lengthy discussion about garbage collection and litter tickets followed. The previous town board eliminated the fees for garbage pick up to encourage people to clean up their yards and street areas. A clean up campaign was conducted by the town board in the San Juan area and by the BTIA on the main road from Ramon's Village to Victoria House. Good examples have been set, yet large areas of the island are littered with trash. It was also pointed out that since the litter law was passed in 1991 no tickets have ever been issued, even though J.P.s, Health Office and the police are authorized to do so. Iraida Gonzalez J.P. suggested that the J.P.s be asked to assist by issuing tickets. Bruce Collins went and asked the mayor for some tickets and Iraida signed for 2 books of litter tickets. BTIA members offered to assist her in issuing the tickets.

Due to the small attendance it was decided to hold an emergency meeting on Tuesday, December 16 to address the president's letter of resignation and the upcoming DEMA show. Einer Gomez' letter follows:

Dear Members,

An association is not a one man show. Also, it is difficult to function with only a handful of active members. For many years our chapter has been faced with this problem, depending on the same handful of people for its survival.

The present board has not been able to hold meetings during the slow months and I believe that the reason is that board members found themselves compelled to serve. This was due to the lack of participation by membership at meetings. Since then we have been inactive and now that the tourist season is upon us, it will be impossible for me to motivate members and carry out projects.

Having the association at heart, I think it is only fair for me to tender my immediate resignation and give the opportunity to someone else that can dedicate more time to our association. My resignation by no way means that I will no longer be part of the B.T.I.A. I will remain an active member. Members, the future of our association depends on you, be ACTIVE.

Thank you.
Sincerely, /s/ Einer Gomez
cc: Ms. Susan Fuller, President BTIA
Mrs. Catherine Paz, Vice President
Ambergris Caye Chapter

BTIA President resigns, special meeting called to deal with situation

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