S PUBLISHED WEEKLY BY THE GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES
BELIZE CITY P. 0. Box 324.
No. 2 ************** Up to 10th January, 1966.
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVE FILLS IN THE DETAILS
Following hard on the enactment of the instruments for modernizing
the Belizean fiscal structure last month the House of Repre entatives
passed several Bills giving effect to agrarian reform, rent control and
increased revenue collection.
Presenting the Customs and Excise Duties (Validiating) Amendment
Bill the Premier again appealed to Belizean manufacturers not to take ad-
vantage of the Domestic consumer. The protection which they now enjoy he
stressed, will ensure them a bigger share of the market. They should take
advantage of the opportunity afforded by their increased turnover to im-
prove their products and, possibly, to reduce prices.
Our Economic Emancipation
.There was a lengthy debate on the Rural Land Utilization Bill.
Introducing this the Minister of Natural Resources said it was an
act of economic emancipation, containing some of the most farreaching and
important measures ever to come before the House.
An outstanding feature of the Bill is that idle agricultural land
holdings of over a hundred acres will attract what was termed as "develop-
ment incentive" tax.
Mr Hunter revealed that over 2 000,000 acres of arable land in
this country are not being utilized. It is government's intention to in-
duce those land owners, especially the absentee landlords either to de-
velop the land themselves or to sell it to someone who will develop it.
The Tax will not affect holdings of less than 100 acres, nor will
it affect lands which is already developed. Holdings for which an
approved plan of development has been presented will also be. exempted.
Champion Of The Public Interest
The measure received strong support from the government benches.
The Minister of Internal Affaizs,. the Hon. Lindbergh Rogers,
praised Mr Hunter for his courage in'presenting the :Bill,*pointing out
that in many parts of the world today a Minister would not have had the
nerve to stand up against big land owners.
While the Opposition voted against passage, tha Hon. Philip
Goldson, Icader of the Opposition, made it clear that he was not opposed
to the prinoaple of the Bill.
He q.nted the measure to be studied for a further six months.
Several speakers declared that the important point at issue was
whether government was prepared to serve the national interest or that of
large land owners.
No one, the Minister of Internal Affairs emphasized, need fear the
proposed land taxes if they were truly in favour of development. Only
speculators and those subordinate to their influence would oppose the Bill.
Other measures included the Entertainment Tax Bill, which upped
the tax on admission tickets over fifty-five cents for cinemas, the.Town
Property Tax which deals with the valuation of properties in Belize City;
the Fisheries Amendment Bill which increased the export duty for pound on
lobster sales and the Land Tax .Bill which revised the rate of taxes pay-
able under the Land Tax Ordinance. This Bill is quite distinct from the
proposed Rural Land Utilization law.
These Bills now go to the Senate for final action.
The House, which was presided over by the Deputy Speaker, the Hon.
Allan Arthurs, adjourned until January 21st.
TO KEEP RENTS IN LINE
Government has taken steps to curb exorbitant rents. The Town
Property Tax Bill, approved by the House of Representatives on Friday,
stipulates that the valuation of property for tax purposes will be based
in future on the rental charged. Government expects landlords, realizing
that their property tax will be tied to the level of rents charged, will
be persuaded to lower their charges.
The Minister of Local Government and Social Development explained
that this Bill would not affect people living in their own homes nor those
landlords who charge fair rents.
The new measure is in addition to the Rent Restriction Act, under
which a tenant who feels that he is being exploited, can appeal to a gov-
ernment appoint tribunal for redress.
FISHERMEN TO HELP MODERNIZE THEIR INDUSTRY
The Fisheries Amendment Bill, another of the measures, approved
last week, gives the Minister authority to impose a duty on each pound of
lobster exported to a maximum of ten cents a pound.
Government intends to establish a proper fisheries service. This
includes the establishment of this country's first fisheries laboratory.
S Speaking on .the move the Minister of Natural Resources declared
that the fishdri s iandustxy is among our more developed industries.
Fishermen could contribute more to the national economy, thus helping to
pay for the improved services we all expect from government.
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ACTION TO IMPROVE ROAD SYSTEM
Government is greatly concerned over the state of the loads in
this country. And so, in an effort to improve conditions, the Ministry of
Communications has drawn up a schedule of new rates to meet the cost of
improvements demanded by drivers and the travelling public.
Motor cycle licences have gone up from $10 $15 a year. Fox
motor cycles with side cars, the rise is from $12 $20 a year.
Taxis exceeding 2,000 pounds tare, but not exceeding 3,000 pounds,
will pay $50 instead of the $42 they paid last year. Fox those under
2.,000 the hike is from-$34 $40o. .
The bigger taxis, exceeding 3,000 pounds tale? like goods vehicles
will go up by $10. Vehicles used solely as hearses will pay a simile.r
Trailers used exclusively in connection with agriculture and
tractors, which used to pay from $5 to $20 are exempt from the annual
Other changes; Driving permits, up by $1.; Leanners' permits,
up from $1 $2.50; drivers' test $2.50
MINISTER ADDRESSES CATHOLIC TEACH.RRS
Speaking to a packed hall of educators on the occasion of the llth
Annual Convention of the Catholic Teachers Association, the Hon. Mrs.
Gwendolyn Lizarraga praised the A'ssociation for its continuity and the
worthy objectives for which it stands.
And she pledged the full support' and cooperation of Government in
the years ahead,
Outlining the heavy demands on the nation which the support of
education entails, :i- 1.. i.-.-s r-vealed that in the ircigcnization of
Primary education, children aged 12 to 15 will have a better opportunity
to exploit their aptitudes in various directions. On leaving school they
should have no difficulty in deciding what career or special interest to
pursue in life.
The Minister also called on the teachers to take advantage of the
splendid opportunities fo.r their further advance made available by govern-
On Secondary education Mrs. Lizarraga said 262 students are enjoy-
ing scholarships. Of these, 43 are doing Sixth Form work,
She also reminded the teachers of the ruling on corporal punish-
ment and asked them to exercise patience in handling their students.
SENATOR LESLIE'S CHALLENGE
"Let us not be passengers on this voyage of nationhood. This
country -cannot afford toi many passengerSc It needs people with the
greatest interest in its human resources."
This was the message Senator Vernon Leslie had for the Catholic
Education Association as he opened the second day of their Annual conven-
tion on Tuesday.
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Belizeans are capable of the highest degree of service. This was
evident by the awards this year to two teachers who had completed, with
merit, twenty-five years' service in the teaching profession.
"The interest you take in your work will determine the calibre of
the Belizean citizen of tomorrow," the Senator went on as he urged the
teachers to equip themselves professionally to be able to perform with
maximum efficiency in the class room.
VETERAN CARIBBEAN TEACHER ADVISES
Hundreds of teachers from non catholic schools were addressed by
Mrs. E. Dalton-James, President of the Caribbean Union of Teachers, when
they gathered at St. Mary's Hall for their annual convention.
Mrs,.Dalton-James conveyed greetings from Teachers' Union in
different parts of the'world. Teachers in Belize are not isolated in
their efforts, she said. They are part of a movement which embraces some
five million teachers.
As members of the profession they owe service to those whom they
serve. They must be prepared to give of themselves selflessly. Teachers
should embrace every opportunity to improve their ability as they are, in
a real sense, nation builders.
Earlier the ceremony began with an address of welcome by Mr Ralph
Williams, President of the Union of Teashers.
The Chair was taken by the Chief Education Officer and the bless-
ing was pronounced by Reverend C. Leonard Carty of the Methodist Church.
TAKING THE MESSAGE TO THE PUBLIC
"Schooling must be carried out against the background of the
family. The school must be an extension of the family."
This is what the Minister of Education told a Public Meeting on
Education held at the Bliss Institute last Tuesday night.
The Minister called on teachers to exercise tact in their con-
tact with parents and she urged teachers and parents to work together for
the good.of the child. Teachers too should give the parents a chance to
participate in the life of the school.
The meeting commenced with the playing of the Belizean Anthem.
This was followed by opening remarks by the chairman, Senator Vernon
Leslie, Resident Tutor of the Extra Mural Dept., who assured members of
the teaching profession of the support of the University of the West
Indies in the field of Education.
Mr J.L. Blackett
Another speaker, Mr J.L. Blackett, reminded the teachers that
they hold a key position in the laying of the foundation of our National
""For this reason," he said. "teachers must hold before the -
children a habitual vision of greatness and must project vitality, unity
and knowledge." .p
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SSpeaking on the same occasion, Mrs. Dalton-James said:
"Education is the business of the people, and education must
supplement the- inadequate experience of life."
The centralization of education must give way to the democratiza-
tion of the system. Thus, the man on the street would feel equally
sponsible for the type of citizens the school produce.
IN THE SENATE
An enabling Bill, under which the Minister of Natural Resources
would have power to complete the transfer of the interests of a desoeased
lease of the crown lands in the same way as he may complete the transfer
of the interests of a desceased purchaser of Crown Land, was considered by
the Senate on Tuesday.
Senator Hassock raised two objections to the Bill. He objected to
empowering the Minister to complete the transfer of interests and what he
termed the lack. of provision whereby the public would be made aware of
such a step.
On a motion by Senator Courtenay, the bill was referred to a
select Co.mmittee for further study.
The Senate meets again on January 25th.
THEY SAW THE PREMIER
MR ROBERT TEPPER, Consul far .the U.S.A., who presented the Premier with an
autographed colour portrait of President Lyndon Johnson.
The photograph is inscribed; "To Premier George Price with the
sincere interest of the Government and people of the United States ,of
America in the welfare of the Government and people of Belize at this
most important stage of their constitutional and economic development".
Mr Price told Mx Tepper he is hopeful that the programme of the
Alliance for Progress will bring good results. The western hemisphere, he
went on, should not be forgotten as it is one of the most important areas
of the world today.
MR ELMER ROPER, a former Mayor of Edmonton, Canada, here on a "sentiment-
Mr Roper, now in the Printing business, said he used to listen to
his father, a sea captain, speak of his calls at the port of Belize City
to load coconuts for Philadelphia.
He had always wanted to know this country.
NM Roper was presented by the Reverend Elward Green, head of the
Nazarene: Mission in Belize.
MRS E. D.LTON JAMES of the Caribbean Union of Teachers. The Caribbean
educator said shl had formed the impression that Belize is.an
open country ready for development.
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With regard to education in Belize, Mrs Dalton-James observed that
Government was tackling the main'job that of educating its citizens. In
some respect, the approach to education here is ahead of the Jamaican
approach. She cited the law providing for compulsory primary education
and the fact that our schools take children from the age of five.
MISS JANET COTNeR, an'expert in the Science of teaching childirn to read,
who was here to participate in the C.E.A. annual conference.
She thought the conference was a very good one. She found the
teachers very interested and marvelled at the student-teacher ratio. She
also. commended the country's high rate of literacy.
MRS MABEL BROWN, whose son Vincent, is a member of the Peace Corps contin-
gent in Belize.
The Browns are from New Orleans.
Mrs Brown told the Premier that Belize should be more widely ad-
vertised abroad. The people are very nice and the country very, lovely,
Mr Price told Mrs Brown Belizearls are very grateful to her son and
the other Volunteer workers here.
On Tuesday, she paid a visit to the Maya Ruins at Xunantunich.
THE JESUIT MISSION ANNOUNCES
Changes of assignment of personnel of the Jesuit Mission in this
country were announced last week.
SThe office of the General Manager Roman Catholic Schools will be
moved from.:.the Catholic Presbytery to the main floor of the building at
No. 17 Regent Street, the new office of the Jesuit Mission Superiar.
The .,Superiox's residence will now be located on the upper flat of
the same, building. The Reverend Father Francis Ring will continue as
Gene ral Manage r.
A new Priest for the Beliza Mission, Reverend Father James Short
is expected to arrive shortly and his assigned to the Chancerx studies at
Holy Redeemer was also announced.
Father Short has just completed advanced studies in cannon law in
Meanwhile Brother Clyde Croy is transferred from the Superior's
Residence to Saint John's College. Reverend Father Harry Delane.y from
the Independence Township, will take up a position on the staff at Saint
John's College, Landivar.
For the time being, the parish at Independence will be administer-
ed by the Reverend Father William Thxr of the sacred Heart Parish, Stann
Saint Ignatius Parish in Belize City is to have a new assistant
Priest. He is the Reverend Father John Ruoff, formerly of Holy Redeemer
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Father Henry Sutti of Saint Ignatius will go to La Immaculada
Pa~ish in the Orange Walk District.
AROUND THE DISTRICTS
New School At Calcutta,
A $14,000 plimaxy school was declared open last Monday by the
Minister of Education.
The Ministex of Education emphasized Government's policy of co-op-
ixation with all religious denominations in the education of children.
Government had made a giant of $28,000 towards the cost of school
fuinituxe, she revealed.
Continuing, Mxs Lizaxiaga said her Ministry, in the drive to
achieve uniiesal literacy, had provided funds from its limited xesouxces
fox teachers' salaries, a fifty percent contribution towaids building
costs, including quarters fox tcachses.
The Ministex then called on the community at Calcutta to partici-
pate in the education of their children and to cooperate with the Seventh
Day Adventist Mission in their effort to improve the school.
The Belizean Anthem-was pl-ayed as the Minister-, accompanied by
area representative Floxencio Marin and the school Managex axxived.
STREAMLINING FOR DEVELOPMENT
A meeting of the Belize District Extension Coordination Committee
was held at the Bliss Institute on Thursday.
The Committee is part of the government oxganizatioh for imple-
menting the country's Development Plan. Its principal function is to
coordinate the efforts of extension workers in the Belize Ruxal Aleas
with a view to providing mox~ effective service to the people and im-
proving productivity and living standards.
The meeting discussed a provisional plan of action, including the
cairying out of a survey of the villages in the Beliza Rural Area. The
objective is to identify factors which hinder development.
Present were the representatives fox the Belize Rural Area the
Honouxable Fred Hunter and the Honourable Hectox Silva, substituting for
the Honouxable Louis SylvestIe who is attending a conference in New
Mr C.P. Cacho, of the Central Planning Unit, (Ministry of Finance
and Economic Development) outlined the. object of the exercise.
VEGETABLE CO-OP. DOES WELL ON 8s ACRES
The San Jose Vegetable Gaxdiners' Cooperative delivered some foul
hundred pounds of tomatoes and two hundred pounds of cabbage to the
Belize City Market.
The cooptlative, formed in 1962, has a total acreage of eight and
a half acres. There are fifteen members.
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A spokesman for the cooperative said they have been producing
vegetables for the Orange Walk district. In answer to the call to produce
more they had expanded theii cultivation last year.
The Chairman of the cooperative, Mr Celestino Escalante was opti-
mistic about this year's activities. And he extended an invitation to
wholesale buyers to visit the cooperative farm at mile 73 on the Northern
TOLEDO FARMERS GET TOGETHER
Payments by the Marketing Board for rice paddy have accounted for
the large circulation of money in the Toledo district last month.
Commenting on this last week, the Hon. Charles Martinez, Represen-
tative for the Toledo South division said Belizean Farmers in the District
are looking forward to 1966 with great optimism.
Some 26 Belizeans in Punta Gorda, along with a farmers' Group of
Santa Teresa Village, have been given some beans seeds on loan. The
farmers, said Representative Martinez, have banded together to dedicate
themselves to agriculture as their means of livelihood. The group is led
by Town Board councillor Joseph Roaches.
.STANN CREEK AND CAYO DISTRICTS PREPARE AGRICULTURAL SHOWS
Agricultural Show Committees in the Stann Creek and Cayo Districts
are making plans for their 1966 Agricultural Shows,
In Stann Creek Town the Agricultural Show Committee announced
after a meeting on Thursday, 'that their show is to be staged on April
Meanwhile the Western District Show Committee have decided to hold
a two. iay show this year. Theirs will be held on November 13th and 14th.
The committee feels that this arrangement will allow farmers more
time to exhibit a greater variety of produce.
TRAGEDY IN COROZAL DISTRICT
Police in Colrzal Town reported that 34 year old Daniel Rancharan
of Ranchito has been admitted to the Corozal Town hospital as a resUlt of
gunshot wounds received in his shoulder and abdomen.
It is reported that a hunter from Calcutta village accidentally
Meanwhile the police are also investigating the death of Mr
Rudolph Flowers who, according to reports, poured gasoline over himself
and set it afire.
NEWS IN BRIEF
SIMON YOUNG, Belizean shipwright, last week launched a $20,000 tug, the
TERESA, for Storage Limited, subsidiary of Tate and Lyle.
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The tug is 14 feet wide, 48 feet long and 6 feet deep. It is the
sister ship of the STEPHANIE which was also built by Simon Young.
ThREE VILLAGES in the Toledo district Seine Bight, Placencia and
Barranco have had the alcalde jurisdiction ended.
According to Statutory Instrument No. 36 of 1965 published in the
Gazz~tte of 31st December, 1965, the Minister of Local Government ordered
REVhREND FATHER JOHN PAUL CULL of the Society of Jesus, accompanied by
two Papal Volunteers attached to Saint Peter's Clavier College in Punta
Gorda, began a tour of Blue Creek Village, Aguacate, Santa Teresa, Crique
Sarco, Oxtoxa and Dolores in the Toledo district last Monday.
Ro VULLIAMY, Senior Engineer, J. Cocksedge, Resident Engineer and A.
Elsden-Smith of Pierce Cardew and Rider arrived from London last week to
organize a series of investigations at the new-capital site.
A MEMORIAL SERVICE in memory of the late Richard Cottrell, M.B.E., T.D.
was held at the Church of Saint Mary's the Virgin on Wednesday.
Among those gathered to pay homage to his memory were the Honour-
able Premier and Minister of Finance, His Worship the Lord Mayor of Belize
City, H.D, Westby and the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Finance,
R.A. Fonseca, O.B.E.
K.L. EWING, Senior Customs Examiner left for Trinidad on Friday to under-
go a five month course at the Regional Training School for Customs and
BELIZEAN YOUTH WORKER LASCELLE BOWEN who is studying the theory and opera-
tion of Youth Work at the National College for the Training of Youth
Leaders at Leicester, is doing well in Britain.
A report by the London Press Service quotes Lacelle as saying he
has been very impressed with the method of training for probation