Nearly 160 renew licenses through contingency plan

POSTED: 07/22/11 12:29 PM

St. Maarten – Prime Minister Sarah Wescot-Williams says 157 people registered as living in St. Martin had taken advantage of the opportunity to renew the driver’s license they’d been issued by the government on the Dutch side by the end of business on Tuesday. The opportunity for them to get the licenses, which will be valid for one year, began in June as a temporary measure that will allow them to obtain a French driver’s license.

The government has also made progress on creating a list of relevant persons and agencies that should be contacted when the Dutch side needs to work together. Creating the list is necessary because the authority for certain areas that the government in Philipsburg has control over, are not the authority of the politicians and agencies on the French side. One example of this is disaster management. The officials in Marigot have certain authorities and other parts of the authority lie with the French State.

“One of the things that has been remarked by our side is that we don’t where to be and by whom to be for specific questions and specific requests and so it is indeed an area that was immediately picked up following the meeting on Friday in terms of where do we have to be in case of. So that contact has started to make sure that everyone is on the same page,” the prime minister said.

The Office of Disaster Management has already taken up contact with the Cabinet of the President of the Collectivite to obtain the relevant information.

Hurricane passes

The prime minister also revealed on Wednesday that companies registered on the French side have not been granted Hurricane passes because they have no validity on that side of the island. The decision to not give the passes anymore was taken in 2011 and also covers the media.

“The Dutch side and the passes issued by Dutch St. Maarten have no validity on French St. Maarten and so the media of French St. Martin was advised to contact the authorities on French St. Martin to make sure that accreditation is granted over there, because we have no indication to show a media house or media personality coming from the French side and shows their pass from Dutch St. Maarten that the French authority will grant the right to be on the French side and move to the Dutch side,” Wescot-Williams said.

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