Since officially swearing in as Mayor of Belize City on March sixteenth, Darrell Bradley says he has had to make tough decisions at City Hall, including the recent firings of twenty-two employees. Those choices, according to Mayor Bradley, are in line with a hundred day plan that was initially unveiled during the U.D.P.’s manifesto launch a few weeks prior to the Municipal Elections. Among the decisions was the implementation of an internal audit, the results of which has led to a downsizing of the council’s workforce. That too, says Bradley, was action needed to address the issue of redundancy. Despite the unofficial introduction of the strategy a day after winning the elections it was not until today that the hundred day plan, which includes the introduction transparent system of public tendering and procurement, was officially made public. While the hundred point plan of action is ambitious in its scope the mayor says the plan is very much achievable.
Darrell Bradley, Belize City Mayor
“We have announced that we have already engaged a firm of external auditors, Castillo Sanchez and Burrell and they are in the process of or conducting a full financial audit of the city council and we intend to have these things in place at our hundred days benchmark and we will make these things public so that people in Belize City can know what he current financial position of the City Council is and how we move forward. We have said that change comes with leadership but we are very committed to putting in place the systems that will bring about that change and the systems include selecting persons like Miss Ordonez and Miss Gentle to ensure that we are able to have the proper controls administratively and internally so that our operations are run in the proper way. When you look at the other areas under accountability and governance—they are far reaching areas—for example we talk also about making the tax rolls public, making the trade licensing fees public so that these things can be made available to the view of the public and they can just go to where these things are made public on our website and they can check these things. So that residents of Belize City will know how much every other person pays in property tax and trade license and if there is any problem, you can then bring it to a very efficient and easily operated appeals board and you can question your property tax or your trade license assessment so that you feel your government is running in a way that it is accountable.”