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South Beach and ACCSD

Posted By: ScubaLdy

South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 07:02 AM

At the ACCSD meeting tonight we received a report on the visit made to the island by some government officials last Friday, April 17th. There were a total of seven of them plus the Mayor.

Tropic Air gave two free passes, Seaduced provided a catamaran plus a power boat and I think there was at least one more boat. The officers of ACCSD took them down through the many channels in the area where South Beach is proposed to be built.

THEY WERE SHOCKED that there is no solid land there except for the Mayan site. They were honest enough to state that all they had ever seen were ariel photos and it looked like solid land to them.

Tonight I learned that there are actually seven channels running through this area. The law states that 66’ from the water line in all areas is “The Queens Way.” They laughed and said there is nothing that is more than 66’ away from a water line. The committee was assured that this area will not be allowed to be dredged and filled.

Also, as a result, they are going to recommend to GOB that in the future before any approval is given that an on site inspection be made. They thanked the committee and commended them for their fine work.

I asked that we request the newspapers to put a box at the bottom on every article that they run showing the still necessary steps that have to be taken before any development can be started. My reason is that too many people read where “South Beach has been approved” and don’t realize that is only one of many approvals needed.


The committee will have a stand at Central Park on Sunday giving out information, taking memberships, selling placards, bumper stickers and T-Shirts. They also have the beverage concession. So, everyone come out and have a good time. You do make a difference.
Posted By: beachbumin

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 12:40 PM

Just curious. Isn't there a commercial sand dredging operation less than a mile from the proposed South Beach? Why is that dredging ok but not South Beach?
Posted By: ragman

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 12:46 PM

Harriette, Sounds encouraging. Good job ACCSD.
Posted By: azbob

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 02:45 PM

Harriette, thanks for keeping us informed. I am signed up and started receiving emails from ACCSD, but your personal view is always appreciated.
Posted By: JZB

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 02:52 PM

Originally Posted by beachbumin
Just curious. Isn't there a commercial sand dredging operation less than a mile from the proposed South Beach? Why is that dredging ok but not South Beach?


Yes there is. Not to mention the fact that they cut down 4 acres of mangroves without a permit and no one said boo. There is also another sand dredging operation another mile north of that.
Posted By: sweetjane

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 03:48 PM

jzb, doesn't it kind of seem like that proverbial dam with the holes - for each hole plugged, another hole springs a leak?
Posted By: Belize-N-Us

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 05:15 PM

What about that dredging next to the reef up north that occured without a permit?

I haven't seen any other reports on that issue.

Fines? Jail time? Wink, wink?

What happened there?
Posted By: sweetjane

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 05:33 PM

or the accidental reef collision, or the trash problem, or the SP golf course....

exactly my point, doc.
Posted By: sweetjane

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 05:35 PM

sorry, didn't mean to hijack.

i think the ACCSD's continued efforts are to be commended. thanks, Harriete.
Posted By: SP Daily

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 05:36 PM

And your point is?????????????
Posted By: ScubaLdy

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 05:36 PM

That situation up north is being addressed. Last night it was reported that the permit for the dredging up north for barge access was issued over two years ago.
This blatant disregard for the rules of the land is being investigated.
Yes, the problems here are like the gopher game at Chucky Cheeses.
Problems include bureaucratic mumbo jumbo, reporting, follow-up, fines levied, fines collected, etc.

But does that mean we do nothing?

Good News reported. Although some Government Agent let the Mexican owned boat that damaged the reef in front of Ambergris Caye they didn’t get far. When they got to Turneff they did the same thing and a different agency stopped them and cited them. They have been fined $800,00.00 (I believe that is Belize Dollars) and a very high bail has been set.

See – we can win some of them.

We have to bop as many gophers as we can.
Posted By: sweetjane

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 05:40 PM

sorry if it is hard for me to relay my tone in writing. in response to JZB's post, all i meant was, like here, like in many places, there are so many issues it must be difficult for one concerned group to tackle them all.
Posted By: SP Daily

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 05:41 PM

"Although some Government Agent let the Mexican owned boat that damaged the reef in front of Ambergris Caye they didn’t get far. When they got to Turneff they did the same thing and a different agency stopped them and cited them. They have been fined $800,00.00 (I believe that is Belize Dollars) and a very high bail has been set"
NOT TRUE!
The Mexican yacht was reported in Cozumel area a few days after the accident.
Posted By: LaraTravelBelize

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 05:41 PM

great news on south beach!

although makes me sick that the mexicans went right ahead and clearly demonstrated that we hadnt made a big enough impact on them here on this part of the reef....schmucks
Posted By: Belize-N-Us

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 05:49 PM

One interpretation:

"The committee was assured that this area will not be allowed to be dredged and filled."


Another interpretation:

Honorable Gaspar Vega commented during an interview with The Sun that indeed it was a very productive meeting where many concerns were voiced. “It definitely made me more concerned of what is going on in San Pedro. It gave me an insight into how careful we have to be so that a balance can be found between development and the environment. However, we cannot be blindfolded to the fact that development needs to continue. We just have to be more careful and conduct more studies to charter the best way to move forward. I applaud the passion and care for the country that the Ambergris Caye Citizens for Sustainable Development possess and wish more would portray those qualities.”

According to Arceo, in the very near future, Honorable Vega will return and an open meeting will be held with members of ACCSD and the general public.


Posted By: sweetjane

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 05:52 PM

http://www.sanpedrosun.net/09-164.html

dated today:

"According to the experts in the Department of Environment, the affected area measured an estimated 393 square meters (4,230 sq. feet) of coral reef. The estimated cost of the damage is calculated at US $787,000 which Salinas Pliego committed to pay on Holy Thursday before he sailed away...

...Our colleagues at El Diario de Quintana Roo Newspaper based out of Chetumal, Mexico confirmed that the mega yacht, “Azteca” docked at port on the island of Cozumel on Good Friday. This would mean that the cost of damaged had to be settled before the vessel left Belizean waters, however no one could confirm to The Sun whether or not those monies are in the Government’s coffers."
Posted By: Belize-N-Us

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 05:53 PM


One report leads readers to think South Beach is not going through, another leads one to think it is.
Posted By: sweetjane

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/23/09 06:15 PM

just FYI: i received this email today:

"Dear Members,
We have a new easier to remember website address. www.accsdbelize.com
Please pass this on to new members as it has the membership form as well as lots of other good information.
ACCSD"
Posted By: sweetjane

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/24/09 02:45 AM

Originally Posted by ScubaLdy
At the ACCSD meeting tonight we received a report on the visit made to the island by some government officials last Friday, April 17th. There were a total of seven of them plus the Mayor.

Tropic Air gave two free passes, Seaduced provided a catamaran plus a power boat and I think there was at least one more boat. The officers of ACCSD took them down through the many channels in the area where South Beach is proposed to be built.

THEY WERE SHOCKED that there is no solid land there except for the Mayan site. They were honest enough to state that all they had ever seen were ariel photos and it looked like solid land to them.

Tonight I learned that there are actually seven channels running through this area. The law states that 66’ from the water line in all areas is “The Queens Way.” They laughed and said there is nothing that is more than 66’ away from a water line. The committee was assured that this area will not be allowed to be dredged and filled.

Also, as a result, they are going to recommend to GOB that in the future before any approval is given that an on site inspection be made. They thanked the committee and commended them for their fine work.

I asked that we request the newspapers to put a box at the bottom on every article that they run showing the still necessary steps that have to be taken before any development can be started. My reason is that too many people read where “South Beach has been approved” and don’t realize that is only one of many approvals needed.


The committee will have a stand at Central Park on Sunday giving out information, taking memberships, selling placards, bumper stickers and T-Shirts. They also have the beverage concession. So, everyone come out and have a good time. You do make a difference.


bump. sorry - i didnt want the message to be lost.
Posted By: terrielinn

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/24/09 01:55 PM

What is exciting for me to see is the fact that there are citizens that are willing to go through the trouble to take a stand and work to get the attention of the governmental officials that have been "blinded" possibly by the almighty dollar (in their own pocket) or by the need to put people to work etc. Then to top that off, the governmental officials seem to be listening.

These issues are wide ranging, with long standing practices and will take time to correct. some progress is far better than none at all.

Kudos to ACCSD and supporters for the work you have put forth in these efforts!

To those that are just saying "yeah, well what about..." or "but what's being done about..." If you are located on AC get involved. And be thankful that some people have chosen to do something and action is being taken. A bigger voice gets heard better.
Posted By: bywarren

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/24/09 02:00 PM

It is unfortunate that the GOB does not have the money - or the will - to put people to work improving the needed infrustucture as opposed to creating additional demands on the already lacking infrastucture using the argument that it creates jobs. frown
Posted By: sweetjane

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/24/09 02:10 PM

yup. (not that the USA is doing much better on that score...)
Posted By: terrielinn

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/24/09 08:27 PM

Too true bywarren! Wish it were so in many areas of the world - including here in the USA as SJ alluded to. Where's the money to come from? (where's pug and rykat? wink not to leave others out, sweetjane, LeahAnn and jhill too)

Maybe for another thread. sorry in advance for hijack
wink
Posted By: ragman

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/24/09 09:26 PM

The reason this project has united so many is that it is so outrageous a project. It is not going to be built on wet lands; the truth is there isn’t much dry land there at all. On top of that it is adjacent to a very sensitive reserve. If built to full potential it would probably permanently change the character of the Island. These “other” smaller projects that people complain about may be wrong but don’t have any way near the potential for harm that South Beach does in my opinion. I took a good look at it from the air a few months ago and I just couldn’t believe what was planned there. I can’t even fathom the transportation problem to move the people back and forth from Belize City.

sj, I would like to believe that this project could never get off the ground in the US. In my neck of the woods you would have a problem if they found one plant that was considered wet land vegetation growing on it never mind what you have here.
Posted By: sweetjane

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/24/09 09:58 PM

sorry, i wouldn't really know. i was only referring to by's well-put post.
Posted By: ragman

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/25/09 02:49 AM

sj, I interpreted by's post to mean the short term vs. the long term view. i.e.: the jobs temp./permanent vs. the amount of people, trash, sewage, medical needs, stress on the environment, infrastructure, and whatever else goes along with a project of this magnitude constructed on an Island of limited size.

I really hate to make a statement because I really like AC and I want the people/Island to be successful. I'm not a resident quite yet so I try to stay out of the local business. I hate it when some one from the outside (me) tells them what to do but this is so way out.
Posted By: sweetjane

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/25/09 12:47 PM

ragman - me too, my friend, me too. smile
Posted By: Belize-N-Us

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/26/09 03:18 PM

Originally Posted by ragman
These “other” smaller projects that people complain about may be wrong but don’t have any way near the potential for harm that South Beach does in my opinion. I took a good look at it from the air a few months ago and I just couldn’t believe what was planned there. I can’t even fathom the transportation problem to move the people back and forth from Belize City.


Why do you say these other projects are smaller?

http://brahmablue.com/

How many acres of mangrove swamp do you think has to be destroyed to create an 18 hole golf course? How much seabed dug up to create a "luxury yacht marina"?

Both of these appear in the original "master plan" for this development. In fairness, the new web site recently posted does not advertise these. I don't know if the developer has abandoned these plans or is just chosing not to advertise them right now.

I'm not defending South Beach. I think it's a bad idea also but it gets sooooooo much more negative press than any other development when in reality there is little difference between it and some of the other proposed developments.

Many times the increased traffic to the island is cited as one of the big negative effects but any further development is going to do that. Allowing 100 developers to build 10 condos each is no different than a single developer building 1,000 units.

I just think that the laws of supply and demand will dominate the development on the island. As long as there is a demand there will be further development.

Posted By: bywarren

Re: South Beach and ACCSD - 04/26/09 03:38 PM

It's not only AC, check out the development on Long Cay at Lighthouse Atoll. One of the more agressive people oposing South Beach supported it by purchasing there. Long Cay should be a national park, not a development. IMO
I think there is over-development, but I guess owning property on AC makes me part of that.
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