Ministry of Local Govít Gets Ready To Take Over PG Town Council Money Affairs

While we had the opportunity, we spoke with Hulse in his capacity as the Minister of Local Government about the situation at the Punta Gorda Town Council. We've been informed that the Town Council is having a cash flow crisis, so much so that the Ministry of Local Government is making an intervention.

Here's how Hulse explained it:

Hon. Godwin Hulse - Minister of Local Government
"All governing town councils give the minister of local government the responsibility to oversee these town councils as well as village councils - and gives the authority to appoint a financial controller if there is anything that is not in accordance with what the regulations called for. We have been doing some checks on all the councils and PG has some difficulties. I cannot comment because the process is not yet complete and so we have not reach that point yet where we've decided what we are going to do. We are working with them, the administrator, the mayor and members of the council to see how we can help. Appointing an administrator is a kind of final step, but we are not fully there yet."

Daniel Ortiz
"Are you able to speak briefly on it? I know you've said you can't get into the details. Is it because of financial difficulties?"

Hon. Godwin Hulse - Minister of Local Government
"As you know all the councils are responsible for paying their own way. There is a certain amount of autonomy and that requires collecting taxes etc. and clearly they are not able to meet all the expenses that they should be able to meet and that involve tax collection and a whole host of things. I just wanted to clear that at this point we are not investigating any wrong doing or impropriety or missing funds. Its management of the funds and management of the councils that we are looking into."

We contacted Mayor Anthony Fuentes and the Town Administrator, Ludwig Palacio, and both of them declined comment.

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