N ASSA U AND BAHAMA ISLANDS LEADING NEWSPAPER Cholera epidemic real possibility Volume: 107 No.319TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 2011 PRICE 75 (Abaco and Grand Bahama $1.25 WEATHER PARTLY SUNNY HIGH 85F LOW 73F By SANCHESKA BROWN T ribune Staff Reporter s firstname.lastname@example.org HEALTH officials are con cerned of a real possibility of a cholera outbreak as the country moves into theb usiest time of the year for illegal immigration. Minister of Health Dr H ubert Minnis told T he Tribune that with every illegal immigrant brought to our shores, the risk of cholera being introduced in the Bahamas increases. We know there have been a lot of immigrants coming to the Bahamas in the past few months, he said, and since t he outbreak of cholera in Haiti last year we have been closely monitoring the situation. Once an immigrant is detained, the first thing we do is check them for the disease. We are at a higher risk because the problem is literally next door and our borders are wide open. The Min i stry knows this is a real concern and truth be told from a health perspective, everyone should be worried. Immig ration causes f ear of outbr eak TRY OUR PINA COLADA McFLURRY The Tribune THEPEOPLESPAPER BIGGESTANDBEST LATESTNEWSONWWW.TRIBUNE242.COM SOFTBALL:ROUNDROBINCHAMPIONSHIPS N N O O L L U U C C K K A A S S T T R R U U C C K K E E R R S S E E L L I I M M I I N N A A T T E E D D SEESPORTSECTIONE INTERNATIONALNEWS J J A A C C K K S S O O N N D D O O C C T T O O R R G G U U I I L L T T Y Y SEEPAGES10 &11 im lovin it DON T PATIENTS DESERVE BETTER THAN THIS? B y AVA TURNQUEST Tribune Staff Reporter email@example.com EXECUTIVE Chairman Michael Moss hit back at c laims of financial mismana gement at the Bahamas Electricity Corporation yesterday. S ummarising financial reports undergone during the Progressive Liberal Partysr ecent term in office, Mr Moss s aid it will take years for the corporation to fully recover from the illogical and irresponsible rate reduction imposed by the previous administration. He also saidt hat the corporation engaged in uncustomary measures to yield the net income results recorded in 2004. Mr Moss said a report by PA Consulting Group, titled Bahamas Electricity Corpo r ation Tariff and Financial Review Preliminary Road Map for BEC and presentedi n January 2006, revealed the corporation had experienced over $7m in negative cash flow in the 2003/2004 fiscal year. By SANCHESKA BROWN Tribune Staff Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org A HAITIAN man died and another man is missing after a boat they were on capsized in rough waters near Man-OWar Cay, Abaco, yesterday. Defence Force officers received an emergency call at 7.30am alerting them to a vessel that had capsized about two hours earlier. B y TANEKA THOMPSON Deputy Chief Reporter email@example.com THERE has been little movement in Kerzner International Holdings $2.6 billion debt talks, a company chief said yesterday. Nothing more has hap pened on that front than what we've covered before. Theres ongoing conversations we have consultants, attorneys, financial people that are working on this every day, every week. I dont really have any more to add thats unusual at the moment, said George Markantonis, Kerzner International Bahamas managing director, during a press conference at the Atlantis resort yesterday. According to international reports, Kerzner International Holdings, which is partowned by Dubai Worlds Istithmar, might default on the mortgages if a deal cannot be reached. However, Mr Markantonis said negotiations are continu ing but there is no reason for alarm. It was a $2.6 billion debt and, of course, no one knew at that time that the world By KHRISNA VIRGIL PRINCESS Margaret Hospital staff claim they are being treated as farm ani mals, forced to work under terrible conditions that continue to deteriorate. Two anonymous sources, told The Tribune of a Princess Margaret Hospital that, for far too long, has been substandard and unable to facilitate hundreds of patients or employees who frequent the facility. PMHs problems, accord ing to the sources, have long been covered up, espe cially with the General Practice Clinics (GPC S S e e e e p p a a g g e e 8 8 S S e e e e p p a a g g e e 8 8 S S e e e e p p a a g g e e 8 8 S S e e e e p p a a g g e e 8 8 S S e e e e p p a a g g e e 3 3 THE RUINED roof space of one of the treatment areas inside Princess Margaret Hospital and, inset, buckets and wreckage left outside the medical registration window. ONE DEAD, ONE MISSING AS B OAT CAPSIZES BECBOSS HITS OUT AT CRITICS OF COMPANY A TL ANTIS DEBT TALKS CONTINUE
A NEW study shows how local hotel operators stand to b enefit from energy efficient architectural designs. The Fichtner energy report r evealed that most hotels produce high electricity costs that c ould be reduced by using products that improve energy efficiency. The German consulting firm did a series of audits on the residential, hotel, and public sectors during 2 009/2010, as part of the InterAmerican Development Banks technical assistance to the Bahamas. The report showed that the average hotel room generated $20 to $48 per night in electricity costs, which in turn took up about 87 per cent of total energy consumption, followed by diesel costs at six per cent. Air conditioning consumed about 50 per cent of the electricity bill, and hot waterb etween 17 and 45 per cent. The research suggests that the largest electricity savings potential in the Bahamas e xists for small hotels, said Phenton Neymour, Minister o f State for the Environment. Speaking at the opening of the Builders Show at the Nas-s au Wyndham Resort Ballroom, Mr Neymour said F ichtner recommended solar water heaters in hotel kitchens, more natural shading and ventilation in resort architectural design, and compact fluorescent light (CFL or LED bulbs with motion d etectors and automatic shutoff timers in high to low traffic areas. The report emphasises the need for and potential benefits of becoming more energy efficient, and the need for increased awareness. This is a major reason why the government established a National Energy Policy Committee to lead efforts to develo p a national energy policy, take practical steps to help o ur citizens become aware of and find practical means of reducing energy costs, and toa ssist in the implementation of the policy action items, M r Neymour said. Another way the government is working to combat high energy use is through its active participation in the US governments Energy and Climate Partnership of the A mericas (ECPA CARICOM regional energy policy plan which Mr Neymour admitted is a sizeable challenge given the diversity across Caribbean nations. He added that the Ministry of the Environment has been pushing for the Bahamas Electricity Corporation and the Water and Sewerage Corporation to consider alternat ive energy sources that could reduce dependency on fossil f uels. This government realises that the road to a sustainablea nd secure energy future will involve both the acquisition o f hard technologies such as CFLs, solar water heaters and solar photovoltaic systems, and access to emerging technologies such as the use of ocean thermal energy conversion for district cooling, w hich is being proposed for the Baha Mar project. We have encouraged the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between technology providers and BEC to fully explore an alternative method of energy generation. Progress in the use of renewable energy has also been made in the water sector, where the Water and S ewerage Corporation has signed a power purchase a greement for wind energy to supply its Tarpum Bay/Rock Sound desalination plant, MrN eymour said. He reminded the public t hat the government has been encouraging Bahamians to invest in more efficient energy products. He said the government will amend the law to allow Bahamians to sell energy back t o BEC through net metering or net billing programmes. Additionally, the government has reduced or eliminated duties on renewable technologies and increased access to technologies such as compact fluorescent light bulbs to Bahamians, in order to improve energy efficiency and reduce demand, said Mr Neymour. LOCAL NEWS PAGE 2, TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 2011 THE TRIBUNE B y CELESTE NIXON T ribune Staff Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org A LMOST $100 million a year could be saved in the private sector through energyc onservation according to Minister of State for the Environment Phenton Ney-m our. Speaking yesterday at the headquarters of Bahamas W aste on Gladstone Road as p art of Energy Week, Mr Neymour said the Bahamas has two major challenges w hen it comes to energy the countrys dependence on imported oil, which puts am ajor strain on the economy; a nd the financial position of BEC (see story, page 1 The National Energy Policy was formed to deal with these challenges by developing ways to reduce energy con-s umption, address climate change and increase energy efficiency and security, Mr Neymour said. Turning to the private sector, he said, there is great p otential to save energy in Bahamian homes. According to Mr Neymour, $ 90 million could be saved annually if the correct costsaving techniques and equip ment were utilised. It is important we use energy efficiently and continue to recognise that as an archipelago, we are extremely vulnerable to the interna-t ional forces in regards to oil and the volatility of its prices, and the fact that it signifi-c antly impacts our own economy, he said. National Energy Policy C ommittee chairman Philip W eech said studies have been conducted to evaluate how best to strengthen thee nergy sector and identify renewable energy options that would be appropriate f or the Bahamas. I n particular, Mr Weech said, solar and wind energy, ocean thermal energy and b io-mass energy were identi fied as suitable renewable energy sources. H e said: Based on prel iminary investigations, all experts agree the Bahamas has the potential for diverse renewable energy resources. Minister for the Environ m ent Earl Deveaux said one the main goals of the Energy Week is to promote the countrys enormous potential fort he application of these energy sources. He said: The money we a re spending on energy without conservation just on buying oil to generate elect ricity unleashes probably m ore available resources for schools, infrastructure and other forms of developmentt han you can possibly imagine. People need to be aware of t heir choices and look at the s mall things they take for granted, such as turning off a light or boiling a whole pot o f water for one cup of tea, Mr Deveaux said. Moving forward, the mini ster said, the governments j ob will be to create the legislative and regulatory structure to support the application of renewable energies. It will open up a whole w orld of opportunities, said Mr Deveaux. AVING ENERGY COULD SAVE $100M A YEAR N ATIONAL ENERGY P olicy Committee chairman Philip Weech. HOTEL OPERATORS URGED TO USE ENERGY-EFFICIENT DESIGNS S TATE MINISTER f or the Environment Phenton Neymour addresses the opening of the Builders Show at the Nassau Wyndham Hotel.
By TANEKA THOMPSON D eputy Chief Reporter t email@example.com PLANNED mega-resort Baha Mar can co-exist with the Atlantis resort on Paradise Island as long as there is increased airlift and improved infrastructure to keep up witht he looming increase in room inventory, said Kerzner execu tive George Markantonis. The mega-resorts will coexist, he said at a press conference yesterday. He added that although b osses at Atlantis are concerned about the scope of the Cable Beach redevelopment they are not scared about the impending competition. I mean obviously were concerned when theres a flood of rooms coming onto the market but its not concern and panic as much as it isconcern about what we all need to do ourselves, Baha Mar, the promotion boards to make sure our infrastructure is ready to absorb all these additional rooms. Baha Mar is going to have the same concerns that we have and we still are quite a Goliath here. Government and tourism officials must focus on luring tourists from new markets into the country particularly from Latin America to offset an increase in hotel rooms on New Providence. What I mean by that is attract more flights. We need to get more airlines coming i n here so that the guests who want to come here to Baha Mar and Atlantis can get here. Otherwise we will have some issues, thats the concern, the good news is there has been some great headway made. The Ministry of Tourism and promotion boards are very active on this phase on what needs to happen. Copa A irlines coming direct out of Panama City was a major coup for the country and there are more announcements thath ave not yet been made, said the hotel executive. According to figures from the Ministry of Tourism and Aviation, visitor numbers f rom Latin America to the B ahamas grew by 40 per cent between May and July this year, compared with the same period in 2010. C opa Airlines jet service f rom Panama City to Nassau accounted for 98 per cent of the increase. According to collected data, 79 per cent of Copa's stopovers for May to July were from Latin Ameri ca. However, the language barrier between English speaking hotel employees a nd their Latin America guests has been a common complaint. Atlantis has now focused on attracting multi-lingual employees and training current staff in basic and conversational Spanish. We have to do something about it because its a critical need. We have Spanish lessons going on property, that a ssociates can volunteer to take. We are looking at wage rates perhaps to reward peo p le who are able to speak a second language because that gives one an incentive to get the basic conversation, said M r Markantonis. He added that while Asia is a market the resort would l ike to tap into, long flights from that side of the world is a hindrance to attracting poten-t ial visitors. Wed love to be able to target the Chinese market for this little country but we are also somewhat practical. Its a very long flight, therefore we are spending m ost of our time concentrat ing on countries that have ease of access. Latin Americai s critical for us, they like shopping, now we dont have to have a double visa coming out of Brazil. Were not happy with the number of Brazilians who areon the Copa flights. B y AVA TURNQUEST Tribune Staff Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org A DISTRAUGHT mother h it out at what she claimed w as the insensitivity of media reports concerning her missing daughters discovery. Kelly Opea, mother of 17year-old Kevisha Richards,s aid TV reports downplayed t he seriousness of her daughters disappearance and leftthe family open to public ridicule. Ms Opea, 37, said: When the news was aired saying thats he was found, I didnt like t he way they went about it. It said she was found and found with a man. She was found around him yes, but she was being held and he wouldnt allow her to go home. She added: It ruined her reputation, it has ruined us. It made it sound like we knew where she was, and it madei t look like Im not a respons ible mother. A t the time of the broadcast, Ms Opea said the 23year-old man was still in police custody and had admitted to holding Kevisha againsth er will. How could you broadcast and spoil her character because now shes ashamed, Ms Opea said. She really wanted to come home. Ms Opea said it was not s trange for Kevisha to leave t he house independently; however, she would always return to eat at home and go to school. On the day of her disappearance, Ms Opea said her daughter ironed her clothes for school the next morning, then left the house. That Wednesday I called her phone and she answeredt he phone but she sounded a fraid, Ms Opea said. She s aid Come for me, come for me please. I never heard her sound scared like that. I told her she better be inside by 4pm, but I started getting wor-r ied and I sounded the alarm w ith other family members. After repeat attempts to call her daughters phone without success, Ms Opea said she went to the South Beach Police Station. [At the station] they told m e she was 17 and that she could give consent, Ms Opea said. It was so casual, like aint nothing wrong. Ms Opea said after a call was placed by a friend to the Criminal Investigation Department, she was directed to the Elizabeth Estates Police Station and received immediate assistance. They came to my aid as q uick as I could blink, they t ook the photo and broadcasted it. According to police, Kevisha was found at an address on St James Road, offK emp Road, on Wednesday. B ut, as a result of the broadcast detailing her discovery, Ms Opea said, her daughter has had to stop attending school because she has been ridiculed by herp eers. She is only 17, shes still underage and you already said she was found, why expose her picture again? Its like youre making a mockery of her, Ms Opea said. Grateful for Kevishas safe return, the family has decided not to press charges in hopes that the entire ordeal will be a learning experience. L ast night, Supt Stephen D ean, director of the Nationa l Crime Prevention Office, said: Every matter that is reported to us we take seriously particularly young persons, we make sure tod ouble up our efforts. H e added: Police dont just decide which one they are going to deal with, every missing person is taken through the procedure. LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 2011, PAGE 3 A BODY was discovered floating off Potters Cay Dock on Sunday at around1 1.30pm, police report. T he body had no visible signs of injury. The deceased is described as being in his late 30s, with dreadlocks. He was wearing a brown undershirt and brown plaidp ants. The cause of death and the identity of the man have yet to be confirmed. was going to crash in 2008. So most recently we have had many advisors who are work ing with our lenders to restructure the terms of our debt, the interest and the payments, he said recently. He could not say when these talk will end and an agreement reached. Executives at Atlantis are happy with the performance of its latest dining option, Virgils, a bbq-style restaurant which seats 450 guests. Atlantis has invested more than $10 million in the new restaurant and employed more than 180 new staff. Since its opening on November 1, turnout has been strong, Mr Markantonis said. In its first five days, weve had so much volume at lunch that we have been obliged to open the interior, at least two parts of the three parts of the interior (of the restaurant Its good news for the employees who work here because that means there's more revenue coming into the restaurant, more gratuities going to them and it also has a wonderful bar. Virgils concept is similar to that of another Atlantis destination Carmines which offers family dining options. f f r r o o m m p p a a g g e e o o n n e e BODY FOUND MOTHER CONDEMNS MEDIA COVERAGE OF DAUGHTERS DISAPPEARANCE A TLANTIS DEBT TALKS CONTINUE ATLANTIS CAN CO-EXIST WITH PLANNED BAHA MAR RESORT T HE A TLANTIS r esort is seeking to attract visitors from new markets.
EDITOR, The Tribune. H URRICANE Irene has passed through the islands of T he Bahamas leaving all life i ntact. Thank God for that; yet people are complaining about this little thing or thati nsignificant matter. Why do we find fault so much, even in time of great blessings? The electricity is a typical example: We have life and we are in good health; yet we grumble about the power being off as if we are entitled t o an eternal and uninterr upted electricity source. Not even the mighty USA c ould afford to have the lights o n when a violent storm is passing through; and sometimes the power is off ford ays or weeks before restoration as a result of storm damage. Most of the citizens of this world dont have electricity, or a bowl to sit on to enjoy a good pass. Most inhabitants of the earth dont have a foodstore or a shopping cen tre to shop for the essentials of life before a threatening tempest. Most people dont have radios, satellites or any com m unication devices; nor do t hey have a dependable roof over their heads. W e in The Bahamas have a ccess to all the conveniences of daily living, but we whine nonetheless even whent here is nothing to nitpick about. Its a culture of ungratefulness and selfinflected wretchedness. We are too damn ungrateful! My brothers and sisters, we need to do better as God is not pleased with us just now. DENNIS A DAMES Nassau, August 28, 2011. E DITOR, The Tribune. IN TODAYSworld, the n egative does indeed seem to o vershadow the positive, even though there are so many positive aspects of daily life. Wen eed to celebrate the positive, the good and uplifting, the beautiful events in our dailyl ife. On Saturday past, I stopped by the small shopping centre on Shirley Street, just east ofK emp Road, to pick up an order from the bakery there. A pleasant young man, sitting w ith a toy display on the porch outside a ladies bou t ique, invited my friend and me to visit inside the store when we completed our pur-c hase at the bakery. This we d id and were pleasantly sur prised at the variety and attractiveness of the items int he boutique, resulting in my purchase of a scarf and our leaving our telephone contactn umbers. On Monday morning around 8.30am, I received a telephone call from the own e r/manager advising me that the item that I had purchased was on sale. T he clerk had overlooked this mark down. Upon check i ng her receipts the owner realised that I had been overcharged $10 and she said thatI should collect the overpaym ent later that day. I feel compelled to write to you, as this evidences thei nnate honesty and beauty of our hardworking people which we must recognise, fos t er and celebrate and not let the negative overshadow the positive. Lets Talk Good Talk. PAULINE M ALLEN-DEAN N assau, October 24, 2011. EDITOR, The Tribune. This makes for interesting reading and some rather con-v oluted logic. T he FNM Government has been saying for more than four years that they were upset that the recent PLP government gave away land i n Mayaguana in the joint v enture project with the IGroup. T heir four-year effort at talk which translates to negotiation when referringt o FNM talk has resulted in taking the government out ofa joint venture ownership of 9 ,999 acres (where the gove rnment owned 50 per cent of the equity in the joint ven ture and therefore 50 per cent i nterest in the land or 4,999.5 acres with I-Group owning 4,999.5 acres, again 50 perc ent). The new FNM deal gives the I-Group 5,825 acres in two grants of 2,912.5 acres each, or an additional 825.5 acres in order for the government to leave the venture. T he FNM is claiming that they have taken land back to Bahamian ownership, albeit t hrough negotiations, but this seems rather a ludicrous assertion to make since the government will now own 4,174 acres whereas under the P LP government agreement the Government of The Bahamas, in fact, owned 50p er cent of 9,999 acres or 4 ,999.5 acres which is 825.5 acres MORE than the FNM g overnment has said it will recover to ownership byT he Bahamas government w ith no potential for profit s haring in the ultimate build o ut other than through taxation. I recall recently that Minis ter Zhivargo Laing explained to us how 49 per cent owner s hip of something was the same as owning 51 per cent. Please call to mind his famous statement that per cent is the same as 51 per c ent in attempting to explain a way the BTC sale. I also remember Minister Alton Turnquest explaining the increase in the fee to cross the bridge to Paradise Island some years ago. You might remember that folks werea ble to purchase bridge crossi ng tokens for 25 cents each and the rate for crossing was increased to $1.00 a quadrupling BUT Mr Turnquest very kindly explained that s ince the official fee was $ 2.00 bridge users would be, in fact, saving $1.00 each time t hey crossed the bridge not really paying an additional 75 cents! I am still trying tow rap my mind around these two explanations. Hopefully, the Chairman of t he Hotel Corporation, Mr M ichael Scott, or the Minister responsible for relations with the Hotel Corporation, HonV incent Vanderpool-Wallace, will explain this new version of FNM maths. Since I likeb oth these gentlemen very much, I trust they will disavow the new maths and speak truth. I look forward to the clarification. P HILIP P SMITH Nassau, October 10, 2011. EDITORIAL/LETTERS TO THE EDITOR P AGE 4, TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 2011 THE TRIBUNE The Tribune Limited NULLIUS ADDICTUS JURARE IN VERBA MAGISTRI Being Bound to Swear to The Dogmas of No Master LEON E. H. DUPUCH, Publisher/Editor 1903-1914 SIR ETIENNE DUPUCH, Kt., O.B.E., K.M., K.C.S.G., (Hon. Publisher/Editor 1919-1972 Contributing Editor 1972-1991 EILEEN DUPUCH CARRON, C.M.G., M.S., B.A., LL.B. Publisher/Editor 1972Published Daily Monday to Saturday Shirley Street, P.O. Box N-3207, Nassau, Bahamas I nsurance Management Building., P.O. F-485, Freeport, Grand Bahama O N SATURDAY, the city of Nassau a nd the Anglican Diocese celebrated their 150th anniversary one as a city, the other as a cathedral. The status of the two was established from the same letters patent issued from Westminster in ther eign of Queen Victoria. The date November 4, 1861. It was on that date that Christ Church p arish of the Bahamas and the Turks and C aicos Islands were created as a separate diocese with Christ Church Cathedral becoming its cathedral church. I t is recorded that Dr Charles Caulfield was consecrated the first Bishop of Nassau at Lambeth Palace, London, and arrivedi n Nassau in May, 1862. The Letters Patent were proclaimed with much ceremony on the steps of thep ublic buildings by the Provost Marshall, and were read in Christ Church Cathedral in the presence of a large number of p arishioners and government officials, a ccording to Anglican church records. We are told that church and state cele brating their anniversary on the same day t his weekend was cause for a lively and at times heated discussion on one of the morning radio shows yesterday. It is u nderstood that the host of the show was a damant that the church was ill advised to celebrate its anniversary on the same day as the city because of the hallowed tradit ion of separation of church and state. By so doing, he claimed, it became an Angli can celebration, excluding too many B ahamians of other persuasions. W e disagree. On Saturday, Bahamians of whatever religious persuasion were cel e brating the history of their city as it was 150 years ago, not as it is today nor as they wished it might have been. It seems that those who dont know their history a re the ones who make the most noise and that is apparently what happened on that particular radio show yesterday. As we did not hear the programme we dont know if anyone of the callers into the show was able to shine the historic truth on the discussion, or whether it was a case of the b lind leading the blind. Anyway, we are told that the host got quite heated as he stuck to his opinion that the celebrationso f church and state should have been held on different days. We do not agree. Historically, the cele brations were quite appropriate. Nothing annoys us more than people who try to rewrite history because there is some feature of it that they find distatesful C olumbus being a case in point. History is what it is, not what we would like it to be. And it can only be judged in its ownc ontext, in its own times, not in the times in which we now live. In fact, we are look ing at the same image, but through a different prism our point of view would be foreign to that of earlier generations. H istorically, if it hadnt been for the c athedral, there would have been no city of Nassau. In this context of creation, the city was born from the cross of the church. In those days, the Bahamas was a British colony with all the laws and traditions oft he mother country in place. In England and Wales at that time the association between having a cathedral and beingc alled a city was established in the early 1 540s when King Henry VIII founded dioceses (each having a cathedral in the see city) in six English towns and also granted t hem city status by issuing letters patent. By the twentieth century the presence of a cathedral was no longer required for thec itys status. But in the Bahamas in 1861, Nassau could not have become a city without Christ Church parish becoming ac athedral in other words a diocesan city. And it is significant that the status of the two of them was created by the m onarch in the same Letters Patent. And s o the weekend celebrations were not only historically correct, but quite appropriate. In those days, the Anglican church was t he Bahamas official church with the monarch at its head. The colonys governor, representing the monarch, attended e very state function at the citys cathedral c hurch. However, in the last century the Anglican church was disfranchised, which meant that it was no longer the Bahamas o fficial church, although the tradition of royal governors attending its official ser vices was not broken until the arrival of Sir R obert Neville (1950-53 t hought the practice of excluding other churches was unfair and so he started to m ove around on official occasions. Although the Catholic Church had done so much good in the Bahamas, especially in the field of education, it was not offi c ially recognised by the royal governors other than at least one who, in the early history of the church in the Bahamas, was himself a Catholic. Government House never sent a representative on official occasions to the so-called foreign American church. Sir Robert also broke that t radition, much to the chagrin of Bishop Spence Burton, of Christ Church Cathe dral, the first American to be consecrated a bishop in the Church of England. Mr Bryan Moody, honorary ADC to Sir Robert, and himself a devote Catholic, was assigned to represent Sir Robert at every official state function, not at Christ Church Cathedral, but at St Francis Xavier Cathedral. Among Sir Roberts closestf riends were Bishop Leonard Hagarty and Father Brendan Forsyth, OSB. Today, when we think of the worlds p ettiness, we recall a saying from the Hindu scriptures: In shallow men the fish of little thoughts cause much commotion. In oceanic minds the whales of inspiration make hardly a ruffle. Re: letter on Mayaguana and I-Group LETTERS l email@example.com Bahamians celebrate citys 150th anniversary -($1(1$1'3$8/6$,17 RI%HUQDUG5RDG1DVVDX%DKDPDV 3 Lets talk good talk B B a a h h a a m m i i a a n n s s a a r r e e t t o o o o u u n n g g r r a a t t e e f f u u l l ! EDITOR, The Tribune Re: Only 18 firearms hand ed in during amnesty The Tribune, October 20, 2011 A familiar saying is: Theres no honour among thieves. Perhaps its logic could be put to good use to improve the gun amnesty programme results. Just suppose a certain amount of cash were also to be offered for each firearm turned in, of course, with no questions asked. Maybe some criminals would steal the guns from each other and sell them to the police. After all, it is also said that when tief tief from tief, God smile! Some of the cash needed might be provided by the many people who, until now, have thought praying and marching about crime is enough of an effort on their part. It would enable them to put their money where their mouth is. By the way, most of us applaud the possibility of our criminal laws being strength ened. However, we must be careful not to go too far. If gun sentences are made too stiff, theres always the possibility that the dimwit robber brandishing a weapon will actually use it to silence his victim as a witness, rather than possibly face an overly severe sentence which is beyond reasonable. As much as we might hate to do it, we should probably seek advice from countries that have had success along these lines. KEN W KNOWLES, MD Nassau, October 30, 2011. When tief tief from tief, God smile!
SOUTH Androsians who m ake the daily trek across the D eep and Little Creek b ridges have become very worried about their safety as the structures continue to d eteriorate, island adminis trator Brenda ColebrookeMunroe said. S he thanked the govern m ent for hearing their cries and signing $1,753.026 con tract to rehabilitate the dama ged structures. Public Works and Transport Minister Neko Grant a warded the contract to Bahamas Marine Construc tion Co Ltd during a ceremony at the Marion E Forbes Y outh Centre. Among those in attendance were Minister of State forL ocal Government Byron Woodside, Public Works Per manent Secretary Colin Higg s, Public Works Director John Canton; project engineer Dion Munroe and area engi neer Garnett Campbell. L ocal government representatives including Chief Councilor Rev James Pratt and members of the commu nity also witnessed the event. Mr Grant said the scope of w orks includes demolition and disposal of existing steel structures, supply and installation of new concrete piles and deck beams, new bridge barriers, installation of traf fic signs and paving of the bridge surface. He said the contractor is r equired to provide a public f erry service while the bridges a re closed. Mr Woodside recalled Prime Minister Hubert Ingrah ams remarks during 2010/2011 budget debate regarding capital expendituref or Family Islands. I n addition to promising to repair the bridges in South Andros, Mr Woodside said,t he prime minister highlighted infrastructure projects including the multi-million dollar a dministrative buildings in Grand Bahama and Abaco, gymnasiums in Abaco and Eleuthera, classrooms in var i ous Family Islands and extensive roadworks. This hit home for all of us, e specially local government, given the fact that for some three years now we have beenl abouring without a capital budget, said Mr Woodside. The fact is that local gov ernment did not get the mon e y, but the money has been placed in central government for these large and important projects that will no doubt affect the lives of persons in our Family Islands. H e encouraged local gov ernment representatives to remind residents that despite the lack of funds in the hands of their administrators, central government delivered on its promise. Mr Grant explained that a loan agreement for $10.1 mil l ion was signed between the government and the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB f or the reconstruction of the Three Island Dock in North E leuthera, the Fresh Creek Dock in Central Andros and the bridges in South Andros. Mr Grant thanked the C DB and employees of the Ministries of Finance and Lands and Local Government for their contributions to thep roject. He also thanked Mr Munroe and the technical t eam at the Ministry of Works for bringing the project to its present stage. We are aware that B ahamas Marine Construc tion has garnered a solid reputation over the years in the completion of coastal and marine infrastructure projects, said Mr Grant. We therefore expect that t he proposed works will be executed at a very high stan dard and within the allotted time frame. The projects construction period is nine months. LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 2011, PAGE 5 B y LAMECH JOHNSON l firstname.lastname@example.org A MAN testified in the Supreme Court yesterday about what happened on a night in October 2009 when a nother man was struck by a c ar and killed. In the murder trial of Tyrone Francis, prosecution witness Jerome Charlton tolda 12-member jury yesterday a fternoon that on the early m orning of October 10, he, a nother friend and the deceased Jonathan Linden had gone to Royals Castle Restaurant to buy food. He said that after the d eceased had ordered their f ood from the Baillou Hill Road restaurant, at some point he had got into a verbal argument with another man, who eventually left in a silver, greyish colour car. W hen the three received w hat they had paid for from the restaurant, they made their way south of Royals to return to Peter Street from where they had originally come. T he witness told the court t hat he and his friends were walking on the eastern side of Baillou Hill Road while eating their meal when he s uddenly felt his hand being h it and saw the deceased being taken down the street some feet while on the hood of the car. Charlton said the vehicle came to a stop after smash-i ng into a wall and the driver o f the vehicle dressed in plaid shirt and short pants jumped out of the passengers window and ran through King Street. When he and his friend f inally reached to where the c ar had stopped, they saw another man get out of the vehicle and lean up against the wall, then attempt to f lee. H e told the court that he tried to restrain the young man, but he was hit in his eye and in retaliation, struck the man in the stomach. Charlton said that the winds hield and front of the car was d amaged with the deceased still on the hood. Moments later, a man pulled up and inspected the body until uniformed police officers arrived on the s cene. D efence attorney for the accused, Murrio Ducille, suggested to the witness that he and his friend assaulted the p assenger in the vehicle. C harlton said no and reiterated that he only hit the passenger after being hit in the eye. Mr Ducille further suggested that one of the three meno n the night in question threw a n object towards the car in question, causing it to swerve, lose control and hit the deceased. His reply was No, sir. Francis faces the charge of m urder and the prosecution a lleges that on the night in question the accused intentionally drove his 2002 Hyundai Accent into J onathan Linden, who died o f his injuries as a result of the collision. The trial resumes today at 10am when more witnesses are expected to give evidence in court. T he aunt of the deceased a lso gave testimony in court yesterday as well as the girlfriend of the accused. However, they were not crossexamined by the defence attorney. J ustice Vera Watkins is the p residing judge in this case. Eucal Bonaby is the prosecutor. By LAMECH JOHNSON email@example.com TWO men have been freed after the murder charges against them were dropped. Kendrick Sands, Leshawn Bowe and Julian Johnson had been charged with the Janu ary 25, 2009, shooting death of Onaldo Newbold in Nassau Village. Newbold had been shot multiple times in the chest. More than a dozen witnesses were expected to testify at their trial, which had been delayed on a number of occasions in the past month. Yesterday, the prosecution withdrew its case against the defendants by way of a nolle prosequi a formal withdraw al order, made and signed by Attorney General John Delaney on November 4. While Bowe was absent from court, Senior Justice Isaacs noted that his presence was not necessary for the process in question. Bowes attorney, Algernon Allen Jr, told the court that his client had been admitted to the Princess Margaret Hospital hours earlier for surgery. The judge then told Sands, who had been on remand, and Johnson who was on bail, that the proceedings against them were at an end. The bail suretors for John son and Bowe were relieved of their obligations and the two men were informed that if there were no other court matters against them, they were free to go. He also noted that the Attorney Generals office could recharge the men in the future if relevant evidence came to light. Jomo Campbell represented Sands, who is on remand in connection with another mur der case. MURDER CHAR GES ARE DROPPED TRIAL HEARS HOW ARGUMENT MAY HAVE LED TO MURDER CONTRACT SIGNED FOR BRIDGE REPAIRS INSPECTING THE BRIDGE in Little Creek are, from left, Minister of State for Local Government Byron Wood side; Minister of Public Works and Transport Neko Grant; Public Works Director John Canton; Administrator Brenda Colebrooke-Munroe and a resident of South Andros. Photos:Letisha Henderson/BIS MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS Neko Grant presents the contract to Jimmy Mosko, of Bahamas Marine Construction. Pictured, from left, are: project engineer Dion Munroe; public works director John Canton (back manent Secretary Colin Higgs; former Local Government chairman Z ebedee Rolle; Mr Grant; Mr Mosko; Minister of State Byron Woodside; Chief Councillor Rev James Pratt; Administrator Brenda ColebrookeMunroe; consultant engineer Lambert Knowles andRev Theophilus Neely.
UNDER the theme The Joy of Giving, Celebrating 50 Years of Rotary in TheB ahamas, the Rotary Club of West Nassau will stage its 38th annual Night of Christ m as Music Concert. The event will be held on Sunday, December 4, at theR ain Forest Theatre at The C rystal Palace Resort and Casino, Cable Beach, at 8pm. Artists include the Royal Bahamas Police Force Band, Freddie Munnings Jr, theR otary Club of West Nassau Glee Club, Forever One, Nathan Stone, SidneyS awyer, Patrick Lightbourne and other artists. Proceeds will be donated to various charities. S ince 1970, the West Nas sau Club has completed a number of community pro jects. The club is a member of Rotary International, which has more than one million members worldwide. The Rotary Club of West Nassau is led by President Bradley King. Incoming Pres ident Jeffrey Kerr 2011-2012, is Chairman of the 2011 Night of Christmas Music Committee. LOCAL NEWS PAGE 6, TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 2011 THE TRIBUNE THIS year, the Bahamas Red Cross Society celebrates the Sights and Sounds of the Bahamas ini ts Christmas card selection 2 011. The first selection honours the great work and legacy of the late artist Jackson Burnside. The oil on canvas painting is from the c ollection of Pamela Burns ide (Doongalik Art G allery) depicting the sound of Junkanoo and Junkanooers moving to the rhythm ofC hristmas sounds. The piece i s titled New Year Risin and is certain to become a collectors item in the f uture, the Red Cross said. The second selection is created by the winner of thev ery first Red Cross Christm as card competition, artist Verna M Wood and is an oil on canvas, featuring the exotic colours of the Christmas hibiscus, pine cones and mistletoe on Bahamians traw. Also in stock is a limited selection of cards from the 2010 and 2009 issues. All cards are available for purchase and early mailing a t Red Cross headquarters o n John F Kennedy Drive. Sales support the relief efforts of the Red CrossS ociety throughout the Bahamas. By CELESTE NIXON T ribune Staff Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org AFTER a weekend where m any across New Provid ence had to suffer from low water pressure, normal ser vice has resumed, according to the Water and Sewage Corporation. I n a press statement issued yesterday, the corp oration said a combination of the cold front that passed t hrough the capital and testi ng at the Baillou Hills expansion desalination p lant, led to many cust omers experiencing periods of low water pressure o r in some cases no water at all. It said: The corporation w ishes to advise that normal water supply has been r estored to most of our customers, with a few remain-i ng isolated complaints which we are investigating a nd addressing. A pologising to customers for the inconvenience, the s tatement explained that in a n effort to improve services, the corporation built t he Baillou Hills expansion plant, which is currently in its testing phase. When fully operational, t he plant is expected to pro duce four million imperial g allons of water per day, and w ill replace the practice of s hipping water in from Andros which provides around 2.7 million imperial g allons per day but can be interrupted by bad weather l ike that experienced over the weekend. This will translate into an improved more reliable w ater supply system for o ur New Providence customers, said the statem ent. W ater pressure may continue to fluctuate over the n ext few days, the corporation said, urging all customers who experience lower than normal pressure to c ontact the corporations call centre. T o get in contact, telep hone the company on 3025 599, or contact the complaints line on 325-0505. MISSING 13-year-old Latekia Taylor has been found in good health, police revealed yesterday. Latekia, of Churchill Subd ivision off Soldier Road and an 8th grade student at Anatol Rodgers High School, was reported missing last Friday. She had not been seen for two days. P olice said Latekia returned home at around 2pm on Saturday. She was one of three girls who went missing in the space of two weeks. P olice issued a series of safety tips to parents yesterday. Parents were told to play an active role in the lives of all their children; always knowt he whereabouts of their children and talk to their children about safety issues. Police also said parents need to make clear that their rules are to be followed at allt imes. If a child is consistently defiant, police suggest that parents talk with school officials, Social Services, or the police liaison officer for thec hilds school. MISSING 13-YEAR-OLD FOUND SAFE AND WELL NORMAL SERVICE RESUMED FOR WATER SUPPLY FESTIVE CARDS ON SALE FROM THE RED CROSS THIS YEARS Christmas card range from the Bahamas Red Cross S ociety celebrates the Sights and Sounds of the Bahamas. R OTARY CLUB C ON CERT PLEA TO HELP FIND SUSPECT S POLICE are looking for a masked man armed with a shotgun who robbed a Palmdale restaurant. The thief, who wore a white jacket and grey pants, burst into Big Shots Restaurant and Bar on Madeira Street at 9.30pm Thursday. The masked gunman escaped with cash and fled in an unknown direction. Police have asked anyone with information about this incident to contact them at 911, 919, the Central Detec tive Unit at 502-9991, 5029910 or Crime Stoppers at 328-TIPS. GUN ARRES T A 68-YEAR-OLD man of Browns Alley, off Kemp Road, is in police custody after Rapid Strike officers searched his home and found two shotguns and a few shotgun shells. Police arrested the man at 9.20pm Thursday. Investigations continue.
FREEPORT The inaug ural year of F LIFF on Location: Grand Bahama Island was a resounding success, o rganisers say. T he initiative started a year ago when Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival( FLIFF) was invited to screen Beneath the Blue in Freeport at the Regency Theatre dur-i ng the 25th festival. T his sparked the idea of h aving an On Location four-day segment for Grand B ahama. A team of people from various walks of life were calledt o the Grand Bahama Min istry of Tourism offices to help get the plan in motion. T he result was a well-run event that was highly appre ciated by Bahamians, visiting tourists, actors and filmmak e rs who came from as far away as Australia to enjoy films and camaraderie while t aking in the beauty of the location. Pelican Bay Hotel's Canal H ouse was the host site and proved itself as an ideal film festival venue. Some of the filmmakers w ere as young as 12 years old, with the win ner of the Grand Bahama Youth Film Competition, K atrina Dorsett, 14, had the oppor-t unity not only screen her film in Grand Bahama to family and friends, but also to travel to Fort L auderdale and screen C yber bullying there as well. The youth competition is said to be open to the entire Bahamas next year. The festival opened with Beneath the Blue which was shot on location at Smith's Point, Grand Bahama and at the UNEXSO dolphin sanctuary. T he outdoor screening was set against the backdrop of the Bahamian waters off Taino Beach and the festivalw as kicked-off by a powerful pre-recorded message by Sir Sidney Poitier. S ir Sidney's daughter Pamela Poitier was present and also had herf ilm screened during t he festival. Two workshops were offered duringt he weekend: one with world renowned underwater cinematograph er and Grand Bahama residentP aul Mockler, the other with Bahamian director Kareem Mortimer. No stranger to Grand Bahama, Bahamian actress Leah Eneas, known for her roll in Beneath the Blue flew in from Nassau to attend many of the festival events. I have got to say that hanging with all those positive, creative and progressive people makes me want to keep motivated, she said a fter her visit. Actor Dennis Haysbert flew in for the entire week end. H e said he was thrilled to spend some time in Grand Bahama and was looking for w ard to diving, snorkeling, horseback riding and time on the golf course. H aysbert received a Career A chievement Award during the festival and is known for his many roles, in particulart hose in 2 4, The Unit, Far From Heaven, Waiting to Exhale and as the Allstate Man on TV. Taking top placement at the award ceremony wasN athaniel Lewis' P oliticking in Paradise Devron Pinder's Knocking Duh Conch Style and Jackie Dack's Shakespeare LYTES. On top of the usual galas, m ix and mingles, screenings, workshops, award ceremonies and after parties, visiting film people participated in a famil iarisation trip around the island by way of a Jeep cara-v an. Many said they couldn't wait to come back. "The weekend was a blast a ll around from the Dennis Haysbert tribute, to the screening of some great films,t o getting to know some very t alented film makers. Everyone was so kind and welcoming. We feel very fortunate and honoured to screen Silver Case at such a g reat event, said Chris Facey of Los Angeles, one of the lead actors in Silver Case, which was screened before a large audience on the final night. On Location: Grand Bahama Island was a magnif icent experience. Everyone was so welcoming, profes-s ional and attentive to the cast of Silver Case. I look forward to returning to GrandB ahama Island for future e vents," said American actor Brian Gamble. All events throughout the weekend were open to the public. All Access Passes w ere only $50, and a one-day film pass was only $7. Organisers said one of the beneficial bi-products of the festival is that now the island has a handful of newa nd very enthusiastic film makers most whom were able to create their first films. G rand Bahamians were also afforded the opportunity to rub shoulders with industryp eople and view thought-prov oking films they might not otherwise see. LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 2011, PAGE 7 LIGHTS, CAMERAS, ACTION D ENNISHAYSBERT a t the Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival DENNIS HAYSBERT receives his Career Achievement Award from Bahamas Film Commissioner Craig Woods. The award is a cultural replica of a Bahamian Junkanoo participant. THE visiting international films at featured at the festival were: Beneath the Blue (USA Delhi in a Day (India Hap py (USA Miss South Pacific: Beauty & Sea (USA/ Fiji Last Rites of Joe May (USA Legend of Ivan Tors (USA Cairo Exit (Egypt Abandon Ship: The Sinking of The SV Concordia (Canada About Fifty (USA, FLIFF opening film during FLIFF On Location: Sunrise), Hanging Your Shorts, Silver Case (Italy/ USA There Once Was An Island (New Zealand), and Late Bloomer (USA All were acknowledged for their participation in the first ever film festival for Grand Bahama. The festival showcased the following Bahamian films: Addicted Bui Comin over Tonite Jasmines Knocking Duh Conch Style Politicking In Paradise Salt Cay Shakespeare in LYTES Islands of Life Surprise Andros: Living Off the Sea and Land, Unashamed Cyber-Bullying FILMS ON SHOW AT THE FESTIVAL S OME OF t he Bahamian filmmakers who had their film screened at FLIFF on Location: Grand Bahama Island during the awards ceremony at Churchill's with Bahamas Film Commissioner Craig Woods (left Bahama Ministry of Tourism's Karen Seymour.Photo: TheBahamasWeekly.com
Collins Avenue: (GPC to move because it was infest-e d with mould and lice, the source claimed. Knowing GPC's deplorable c onditions, the sources said a dministration still forced other departments to operate from the infested space. They have not even brought in environmental health to go over and examinet he place, they claimed. T he horror story, they said, continues with the low g rade standard of the general a rea where medical records, ECG, the pharmacy and diag nostics operate. All that has a leak, they c ant see anyone in those areas at all. They cannot reg ister anyone in the medical a rea near the pharmacy. The staff are not willing to work from the glass wind ows because of the terrible c onditions. People are now s ent on a long walk to the business office to register. S ome areas of PMH, the sources claim, also have no ceiling tiles, leaving exposedl arge growths of moss, mould a nd a torrential like water fall w henever it rains. The odour is just terrible. They have big bins catching water. The cleaning compa ny mops up water 24/7. T he sources believe the run down trash town, will only continue to get worse, as a dministration has not been truthful to the government on the amount of work the facility needs. They (administration make it seem as though everything is good. They are also g etting ready now to do g round breaking for the new p hase. Any areas that they think t hey (dignitaries they are covering it up and cleaning it up. They wouldn ever let them see what is g oing on. Now they are putting up a ceiling and painting over it, but didn't allow anyone to come in and clean or do any thing. O ne of the sources told of an experience in which she is today lucky to be alive to tell t he tale. I was walking through the door, she said, and the ceil-i ng tiles came crashing down. T hey had to call the cleaning company to clean and all that is happening in front ofp atients. Calls made to PMHs administrator Coralee Adder l ey, who was not available, got no response from either of her two representatives. PMHs administrative s pokesperson, Thelma Rolle, replied hours later. She said she would investi gate and release a formal statement later today. Earlier this year, Health Minister Dr Hubert Minnis a dmitted that a new hospital would not be built because of a lack of government funds. Dr Minnis did not respond to a request for comment yesterday. It is understood extremely strong waves caused the boat to roll over, throwing the six men on board into the water. Rescuers raced to the scene and found four victims clinging to a breaker reef. They were pulled aboard to safety. A fifth man was found dead and another is still missing. Sub-Lieutenant Origin Deleveaux, of the Defence Force, said: According to our information, there were six people on board. I can con firm that one of those men, a 50-year-old man, was unresponsive when he was pulled from the water and another is still missing. The other four were found clinging to a breaker reef and were rescued by Bahamas Air Sea and Rescue Association (BASRA officials and are receiving medical attention. The Defence Force along with BASRA will continue to look for the missing passenger as long as the light weather allows us. Sub Lt Deleveaux said offi cials believe the 46ft pleasure craft was in its way to Haiti when it capsized. They did not make it very far. They had just left the C J Dock at Marsh Harbour and only made it about four miles before they encountered extremely rough seas. They were attempting to go through the cut by Man-OWar Cay, but did not make it through. They did not pay attention to the weather advisory because small craft operators had been advised to remain in port, he said. The waves were extreme ly strong and high and over turned the vessel. The men were thrown overboard and the surge washed them to a low line area. The vessel was not recovered. BASRA was able to use their skiffs to get into the low line area to res cue the men. Unfortunately one of them died. Sub Lt Deleveaux said of the four men rescued one man, the captain, claimed to be Bahamian and the other were Haitians. He said all their documents were washed out to sea and the police and immigration will now have to verify their status. LOCAL NEWS PAGE 8, TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 2011 THE TRIBUNE H e said the report also indicated that: Bank overdraft and demand bank loans had grown and totalled more thantwo months revenue; current liabilities substantially exceed-ed current assets; accounts payable had grown to be far higher than accounts receiva ble; government overdue accounts receivable had g rown to $35 million; and while net income remainedp ositive in the $10 million range, other aspects of BECs f inancial performance had deteriorated to what could be c alled a danger zone. Mr Moss said he was s purred to action by recent comments made by PLP chairman Bradley Roberts, w ho claims the corporations finances are being mismanaged by the FNM administration. I am now forced to conc lude that Mr Roberts is either sadly duped, hoodwinked if you will, into believ-i ng BECs finances were in a s tate of good health during the period he served as Minister in the PLP government, or he may be delusional, Mr Moss said. The corporations fiscal year begins October 1 and ends September 30. In his press statement yest erday, Mr Moss also included a brief history of the corporations audited finances over the PLPs five-year term. F or the 2003/2004 fiscal y ear, Mr Moss said BEC booked a net income of $14.160 million. The term booked is u sed deliberately because of the quite unusual, uncustomary and extraordinary measure that took place to yield the result, Mr Moss said. During that year, Mr Moss said, the corporation seemingly succeeded in convinci ng auditors to reclaim a significant portion of provisioning annually set aside to cover likely bad debts. As a consequence, instead o f a bad debt expense being recorded, a sum of $2.837 million was recorded as havingb een recovered, Mr Moss s aid. There is no evidence of past, similar recovery having taken place and there has been no similar, subsequent recovery. Mr Moss said net income for that fiscal period would have been $7.5 million had a b ad debt provision been posted instead of a recovery, and that this figure was significantly lower than net i ncomes recorded in the prev ious two years $11.143 million in 2003 and $10.507 million in 2002. I n the fiscal period 2 004/2005, Mr Moss said, BEC recorded an operational profit of just over $1 million, which was supplemented bya gain of $14 million on the sale of 2 million shares in Cable Bahamas. Mr Moss said: Without the foresight of a prior administration to secure purchase of the shares during the initialp ublic offering of the stock, o ccasioned by that administration and opposed by the PLP, BECs profit would have remained a tepid $1.306 million. I n the following two fiscal y ears, BEC recorded a loss of $2.916 million, and $11.733 million respectively, Mr Moss said. Last night, Mr Roberts denied knowledge of the reports, which Mr Moss said are public record. Mr Roberts said the reports were never tabled in the House of A ssembly. D r Minnis comments came a fter more than 100 illegal H aitians were discovered in waters off Harbour Island, Saturday. There were also unconfirmed reports that aH aitian sloop was spotted near South Beach pools early Saturday morning. D r Minnis said the immig rants caught near Harbour Island show no clinical signs of having cholera, howevert hey will be closely monitored until they are repatriated. He said the government a lone cannot do all the work t o protect the Bahamas against a possible outbreak and citizens need to do their part to ensure the threat does not reach our shores. He said:The public needs t o do their part by informing immigration of illegal vessels when they are spotted and also by not hiding these immigrants when they get here. There has been one conf irmed case of a Haitian i mmigrant who had cholera in the Bahamas. Dr Minnis said the immigrant has sinceb een returned home and the d etention centre has been sterilised. S ince the outbreak of cholera in Haiti in October 2010, there have been more than 400,000 confirmed cases a nd more than 6,000 people BECBOSS HITS OUT AT CRITICS OF COMPANY f f r r o o m m p p a a g g e e o o n n e e f f r r o o m m p p a a g g e e o o n n e e f f r r o o m m p p a a g g e e o o n n e e f f r r o o m m p p a a g g e e o o n n e e DONT PATIENTS DESERVE BETTER THAN THIS? ONE DEAD, ONE MISSING AS BOAT CAPSIZES IN THIS IMAGE supplied to the Tribune, buckets and a bin are seen in an open area of the hospital. C HOLERA EPIDEMIC REAL POSSIBILITY
By NEIL HARTNELL T ribune Business Editor A Bahamas-based bro k er/dealer could not renew its Business Licence because it had allegedly breached theC ompanies Act by failing to file audited financial statements and annual returns, its auditors having warned reg-u lators about certain irreg ularities for the 2009 financial year. While unable to put a fig u re on the possible loss suf fered by clients and creditors of Owen Bethels insolventM ontaque Capital Partners, l iquidators Kenneth Krys and Ed Rahming, of the KrYs Global accounting firm,w arned that further financial and legal analysis including a forensic account i ng was required to determine what led to the compa nys failure. There is nothing, though, t o suggest that Mr Bethel, Edison Sumner, the compa nys chief operating officer, and other staff and directors, have done anything wrong in relation to their duties to clients. The former two were assisting the liquidation effort, and while Montaque Capital Partners seven staff were terminated when the liquidation began, two were subsequently retained. In their first report, Messrs Rahming and Krys said a preliminary analysis had identified a number of areas of concern, including the fact that Montaque Capital Part ners accounting records were several months in arrears as of their September 30, $4. 68 $4. 51 $4. 69T he information contained is from a third party and The Tribune can not be held responsible for errors and/or omission from the daily report.$ $5.19 $5.19 $5.17 T HETRIBUNE SECTIONB email@example.comTUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 2011 BAHAMASNassau:242.356.9801 Freeport:242.351.3010BARBADOSSt.Michael:246.435.1955 [Learn more at royaldelity.com] By NEIL HARTNELL T ribune Business Editor CLICO (Bahamas Bahamian creditors will recover $7.5 million less than anticipated from the sale of the insolvent insurers maina sset, after its liquidator was forced to accept a lower bid f ollowing the failure to close an initial, higher offer. In a filing yesterday with the south Florida district bankruptcy court, Craig A.Tony Gomez, the Baker Tilly Gomez accountant andp artner, said he was seeking its approval to consummate a $32.5 million sale of the remaining 425 acres at the Wellington Preserve real estate development to a new buyer, Oxford Liability Company. He added that he had been forced to sign a sales agree-m ent with the Delawareb ased company after the origi nal buyer, an entity called J5 Wellington Preserve, pulled out of a $40 million deal and regained its deposit. A s a result of having to a ccept the lower offer, CLICO Enterprises, the immedia te owner of Wellington Preserve, will recover only $32.5m illion of its original investm ent in the project, as o pposed to the anticipated $ 40 million a $7.5 million reduction. A s CLICO Enterprises is 100 per cent wholly-owned byC LICO (Bahamas recovered from Wellington Preserve, which accounts for 63 per cent of the latters total assets, will be upstreamed tos atisfy the liabilities of its B ahamian creditors who curr ently face a $20 million solvency deficiency. Confirming that he had been forced to re-market the4 25-acre tract at Wellington P reserve, and entered into a new sales agreement, Mr G omez urged the south Florida court to modify its earliera pproval of the J-5 deal and s ubstitute the new transaction i nto the already approved C hapter 11 reorganisation plan for the real estate develo pment. Gomez, in his capacity as l iquidator for CLICO (Bahamas E nterprises, represents that he has already obtained a ssent from his Creditors Committee in the Bahamas to the proposed new price,t he liquidators filing said. He has not yet obtained By NEIL HARTNELL T ribune Business Editor A PROPOSED InterAmerican Development Bank (IDBf orm the Water & Sewerage Corporation will not eliminate, only reduce, its multi-m illion dollar losses, slashi ng these by 53 per cent to an estimated $15 million by 2014. T he Corporations bleak f inancial position was brought into stark relief by a nother IDB paper on the proposed $81 million project, which revealed that its net loss surged to $28 million in 2 010 forcing the Governm ent to inject a new taxpayer subsidy high of $37 mill ion. Net profit will continue to be negative, in the order By NEIL HARTNELL Tribune Business Editor Kerzner International never antici pated how strong its cruise ship pas senger business would become, the head of its Bahamian operations telling Tribune Business the Atlantis resort can accommodate up to 1,000-1,5000 of these visitors daily. George Markantonis, Kerzner Inter national (Bahamas B y NATARIO McKENZIE Tribune Business Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org THERE needs to be an intelligent conversation on net metering and net billing before the Government moves towards any legisla tive changes, a leading Bahamian renewal energy s olutions provider said yesterday, telling Tribune Busi ness the fact that the B ahamas was still testing proven concepts was absurd. Addressing comments e merging out of a recent energy efficiency forum organised jointly by the Bahamas Hotel Association ( BHA) and Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Employers Confederation( BCCEC), Philip Holdom, executive manager of Integrated Security Services (ISS t hat the net metering and net billing conversation was one other countries had 10 years ago. Other countries have had this conversation about net metering 10 years ago, anda lready have the legislation in place, he said. The fact that we are doing Solar PV pilot programs is absurd to m e. PLAN TO CUT WATER CORP LOSSES 53% But will still be $15m in red, down from $28m 2010 high Taxpayer subsidy hit $37m high last year Negative cash flow targeted to fall to $1.7m Drive for revenues to hit $58m by 2014; costs kept at $60m SEE page 4B $7.5M CUT FROM CLICO RECOVERY Bahamian creditors set to regain $32.5m, not $40m, from key asset sale Liquidator forced to accept lower offer, after higher deal falls through Creditors Committee approves; Supreme Court yet to CRAIGGOMEZ SEE page 3B BROKER IN BREACH OF COMPANIES ACT Liquidators allege auditors identified certain irregularities in Montaque Capital Partners 2009 accounts $4m discrepancy between companys records and custodian details Other Montaque subsidiary likely to be wound-up SEE page 4B A TLANTIS IS ATTRACTING UP TO 15000 CRUISE PASSENGERS DAILY Kerzner never anticipated how strong business segment would be $100m upgrade three-quarters complete Gaming revenues increase SEE page 3B B AHAMAS 10 YEARS BEHIND ON METERING Call for intelligent conversation on renewable energy reforms SEE page 2B
Royal Fidelity Merchant Bank & Trust said it has raised a collective $100 million in capital for four clients for 2011 to-date, hav i ng recently placed a $10 million preference shares issue for its affiliate, Fidelity Bank (Bahamas The closing of this issue follows several transactions for Royal Fidelity this year, including the $62.5 million Initial PublicO ffering (IPO and a $31.7 million private placement forThe College of The Bahamas in June. In its capacity as financial advisor and p lacement agent, Royal Fidelity said it has raised more than $100 million for clients in the Bahamian capital markets over the first nine months of 2011. The company started the year off by clos ing the second tranche of a $6 million private p lacement for Aetos Holdings in January. It was a good start to the year, said Royal Fidelity president, Michael Anderson. Aetos is a well-known operator in the Quick Service Restaurant business, but not a lot of Bahamians know that they own and operate the expanding Wendys franchise. Three months later in April, Royal Fideli ty successfully completed the largest IPO in the history of the Bahamas, working in close association with teams from Holland, NewYork and the Bahamas to place $62.5 million worth of shares in Commonwealth Brewery or 25 per cent of the total value in the hands of Bahamian investors. An incredible number of firms and peo p le were involved in this transaction, said manager of Royal Fidelitys corporate finance, Phillippa Ferguson-Wilson. Royal Fidelity completed its third corpo rate finance transaction of the year in June, closing a $31.7 million fixed-rate note pro g ram for the College of the Bahamas. Greg Walker, Royal Fidelitys vice-presi dent of corporate finance, said: The College offering was highly successful and oversub-s cribed by 25 per cent. The attractive 7 per cent fixed rate and 15-year term produced keen interest from both institutional and individual investors. Finally, Fidelity Bank (Bahamas its sister company in the third quarter of they ear to raise $10 million of Perpetual Preference Shares to increase the Banks Tier 1 capital and fund further growth. Completed in late September, the offering pushed Royal Fidelity over the $100 million mark for the first time in the firms history. Group Chairman, Anwer Sunderji, said: It has been a truly exceptional year for the capital markets in the Bahamas. Although the overall economy is still recovering, the total capital raised by Royal Fidelity demonstrates the desire of Bahamians to continue to invest during turbulent times. BUSINESS PAGE 2B, TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 2011 THE TRIBUNE SELF-STARTER WINS 80% OF BAHA MAR PROJECT R O Y ALFIDELIT Y TRUMPETS $1 00M C APITAL RAISINGS BAHAMAS STRIPING, the grant-winning company from the Ministry of Youth, S ports & Cultures Self-Starter Program, h as gained 80 per cent of the striping work to d ate at the $2.6 billion Baha Mar development. It is working on painting car parks and other facilities, having gained a contract from Bahamas Hot Mix. So far, Bahamas Stripings portfolio of Baha Mar Commercial Centre jobs includes Fidelity Bank (Bahamas m onwealth Bank, the Sheraton resort parking lot and the new Cable Beach Fire Stat ion. Bahamas Striping president, Atario Mitchell, said: Were thankful to Bahamas Hot Mix and Baha Mar for work on this great development. A high profile project like this only comes once in a generation, so were very proud that my young Self-Starter c ompany is allowed to be part of it, said M itchell. B ahamas Stripings crew is being trained u nder the guidance of UK trainer Brian B ostock. The crew are learning car park m anagement, how to plan parking ahead of time, machine maintenance and how to layout car parks. One of Bahamas Stripings crew is 25year old Triston Johnson, who recently graduated from the Governments National Job& Skills Training Initiative two-week orie ntation. The company is hoping to acquire more staff through the job initiative. The orientation really tells you how to c onduct yourself and I learnt a lot, said M r Johnson. Now the training Im getting o n the Baha Mar projects with Bahamas Striping is setting me up for a great future. Its not just a job this is a true career. B esides the nice feeling of having some m oney in the bank, Im planning to put a d own payment on a home and buy a car. Mr Mitchell added: Thats what we need right now in this country for the profits to pass through the economy and to build this nation. Thats what Baha Mar and Hot Mix have given us. The Baha Mar work is a feather in our c ap. Everyone is so pleased how the project is going. We see praise from the public along Cable Beach and in the newspapers almost every day about the traffic management and the progress. Mr Mitchell also praised the Governments National Job & Training Initiative. For a relatively new company, its always t ough to make a decent profit in the first few y ears. Training on days away from actual j obs sites is expensive. But we like to do it, h e added. So, this government job program is going t o help us a lot. It means we can train new personnel even when we have no jobs and theyll be paid for it. With the program, training Triston only costs us time and materials. On rainy days, we can even give the crew hands-on office experience and administration. Its a fantastic program and we a re keen to get more young people on board. Bahamas Stripings work on Baha Mar s tarted in August 2011 and continues for s everal years through the life of the develo pment. BAHAMAS STRIPINGS qualified UK striping technician and trainer Brian Bostock guides 25-year o ld Triston Johnson in striping a car park. Ultimately, it reveals our ignorance of the technology, because if we believe that wea re somehow greater than the countries that have gone on before us and integrated this t echnology, and that we now have to somehow discover for ourselves whether these thingsa re true, thats just absurd. M r Holdom added: The fact that net metering is allowed in every state in theU S, and is not a safety issue; BEC is still talking about safe ty issues. The technology is such that it already allows for all of that. Were having silly conversations and pilot pro grams when we already know t hat the technology works, we a lready know that its safe, we know that safety factors have been built into the equipment. Kevin Basden, BEC's general manager, disclosed at the energy efficiency forum that legislative amendments to the Electricity Acts governing both New Providence and the Family Islands, drafted by the Attorney Generals Office, were now under review internally by the various gov ernment departments and ministries. Among the key reforms being contemplated is for the small scale generation of their own power by businesses and households, who could then interconnect systems such as Solar Photovoltaic (PV b ack to the BEC grid. This would, in turn, permit net metering and net billing, both of which are under active con s ideration as part of the leg islative reforms. Mr Holdom said: "What has t o happen is we have to come up with legislation that is good for the people and good forB EC. What needs to happen is the public needs to understand all the terminology, because people don't really have a cluea bout how solar works and how it integrates. It's important that the pub lic understands the technology in a very basic form, so that they can understand what leg islation the Government needst o promote and make law, so that BEC has to fall in line with it. The reality is that every modern meter in the Bahamas is bi-directional, which means that it can spin both ways, but BEC has them programmed to only spin one way. So part of the legislation would be to require BEC, in conjunction with the Ministry of Environment, if you want your own personal grid-type system, to have BEC change the meter so it can spin both ways. Mr Holdom explained: Net metering means that your meter is allowed to spin in both directions. The normal direction when the utility is charging you, and the oppo site direction during times of renewable energy production t o slow down or spin your meter backward. I dont know how net metering is being distinguished f rom net billing. If youre doing net metering you will receive a net bill. I n my mind you cant have one without the other. Net billing, to me, is when t he utility company has to write a cheque to you, not the other way around. You should never get to t he point of net billing unless you are a small energy pro ducer, which is a completely different conversation, but the average person who wants to reduce his bill is never going to produce more than he would u se, and you can put the legislation there to ensure that. The reality is, to produce more than you can use, most people cant afford that type of system. Mr Holdom added: There's a percentage of your existing usage that you are allowed to produce. In other words, no body should be making excess energy and becoming a competitor to BEC. That's not the point. The point is to reduce your energy bills by 50 to 75 per cent. Those kind of conversations need to be had, a fair law needs to be written with regards to net metering but, until you understand every thing, you can't have a con versation about it. B AHAMAS 1 0 YEARS BEHIND ON METERING FROM page one
aging director, effectively confirmed to this newspaper in an exclusive interview just how important this visitor segment has become to Atlantisi n helping to mitigate the worst effects of the recession,d escribing those numbers as a huge amount. Its continued to grow, as has the cruise business in Nass au, Mr Markantonis said of this visitor category. Its not out of the question to getn umbers ranging from 1,0001,500 cruise passengers a day.I ts a huge amount, and as the cruise business has got bigger a nd bigger in Nassau, so has that segment of business. T he Kerzner International (Bahamas resort owner/operator some times had to control access to Atlantis by cruise ship pas s engers to ensure the resort, and its associated amenities, d id not become overcrowded. It did this when occupancy l evels produced by stopover tourists were high, as it did not want to compromise their experience. Attracting more cruise vis itors to Atlantis via day passes was part of Kerzner Internationals strategy prior to the 2007-2008 credit crunch and s ubsequent recession, but this segment has proven invaluable since. It has provided a growing revenue stream for facilities such as Atlantiss casino and water-themed facilities, plus the Marina Village, despite grumbles from some in downt own Nassau that the increas ing tendency of cruise visitors to head across the water to Paradise Island was depriving their businesses of muchneeded custom. Mr Markantonis, mean while, said the cruise passen ger business attracted by A tlantis had exceeded all expectations. When it started several years ago, we didnt think, anticipate, how strong it would become, he told Tri bune Business. Not only is it wonderful for us, but its wonderful for the whole town. The Kerzner International (Bahamas newspaper the company was three-quarters of the way t hrough the $100 million in assorted upgrades it unveiled in 2010, including the nowcompleted 12,000 square foot Teens Club and casino r evamp. Emphasising that Kerzner International had intended to invest the $100 million over a t wo-three year period, Mr Markantonis said: Were about 75 per cent there. We continue to move with that. A lso included in this e xpenditure programme was the $10 million invested into creating Virgils barbecuestyle restaurant, which had c reated 182 jobs. Mr Markan tonis said the restaurant had been a smashing hit during its first three days in operat ion. Kerzner International was still in the process of putting together its capital expendi ture budget for 2012, but he a dded: We always have a lot of new ideas. We do have al ot of other facilities were looking at as part of ongoing c apital expenditures to keep the product fresh, and unusual and enticing for repeat customers. While no new facilities w ere scheduled in the first quarter of 2012, Mr Markan t onis said that as Atlantis and Paradise Island added new a ttractions and amenities, so staffing levels would expand. Employment levels, he explained, would also increase if occupancy levels ran ahead of projections, requiring Atlantis to hire m ore room attendants and bell personnel. A bit of additional employment tends to run parallel to occupancy. If we go into the winter season and find ourselves ahead of pro jections on occupancy, we do hire more people, Mr Markantonis said. Although he had disclosed in May 2010 that Atlantiss casino business was falling 15 per cent year over year every year, Mr Markantonis indicated to Tribune Business this position had been reversed. This is key to the resorts performance, as dedi cated casino room nights make up 15 per cent of its occupancies. Our gaming revenues h ave definitely increased, as w e have spent more time and effort on marketing efforts, Mr Markantonis revealed. Theres no doubt its b ecome a lot more competitive market, and thats because more and more US states have to allow gamingt o meet their own budgets. T ogether with the Ministry of Tourism, Kerzner International is watching the progress of three separate a pplications for mega casi nos/resorts in south Florida very closely. Its something we all have to be cognisant o f. Acknowledging that approval of these projects would be a serious blow to us, given that it would take a way a significant chunk of the day trip gaming markett hat came to the Bahamas from Florida, Mr Markantonis nevertheless said: Theres quite a big anti-casino block in Florida. We will h ave to see how this shakes up. On airlift to Nassau and the Bahamas, Kerzner Inter-n ational had been pleased w ith the joint efforts of the Ministry of Tourism and tourism Promotion Boards to attract new flights and airlines, opening up new routes and destinations. There have been some very aggressive moves to bring in further new airlift, Mr Markantonis said. Weren ever going to fully satisfied, b ut...... no ones taken their eye off the ball. BUSINESS THE TRIBUNE TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 2011, PAGE 3B CONDO FOR SALE S t. Albans Drive off West Bay St.Beautiful 3 storey town house, 2 bed, 2 1/2 bath in private gated property, swimming pool, Rec. GregInterior, nished to your taste with stainless steel a ppliances, granite tops etc. E nd Unit $225,000.00 Middle Unit $217,000.00 Tel: 325-1325 | 325-1408 | 477-0200 e Board of Directors of FamGuard Corporation Limited is pleased to advise that the third quarterly dividend for 2011 of 6 cents per share has been declared to be paid on November 21, 2011 to Shareholders of record as at November 16, 2011FAMGUARD CORPORATION LIMITEDThe parent holding company of Family Guardian Insurance Company Limited BahamaHealth Insurance Brokers & Benet Consultants Limited FG Insurance Agents & Brokers Limited FG Capital Markets Limited FG Financial Limited ENERGY MONOPOLY CLAIM IS HOGWASH By NATARIO McKENZIE T ribune Business Reporter email@example.com A LEADING businessman said yesterday that while net meteringa nd net billing would be a good idea to facilitate renewable energy, power plants were still necessary during peak consumption hours. I think it would be good, it w ould provide another mechanism by which people can offset these substantial energy costs they have, Dionisio DAguilar, head of the Superwash laundromatc hain and former Bahamas Chamber of Commerce president, said yesterday If you go out and put in an alternative energy plant, you should get credit for it by reducingy our consumption, and whatever s urplus you generate you sell it b ack to BEC. Kevin Basden, BEC's general manager, disclosed at a recent energy efficiency forum that legislative amendments to the Elec-t ricity Acts governing both New Providence and the Family Islands, drafted by the Attorney Generals Office, were now under review internally by thev arious government departments and ministries. Among the key reforms being contemplated is for the small scale generation of their ownp ower by businesses and households, who could then interconnect systems such as Solar Photovoltaic (PVg rid. This would, inturn, permit net metering and net b illing, both of which are under active consideration as part of the l egislative reforms. M r DAguilar added: People can generate their own energy now, on an individual basis. The Bahamas Electricity Act allows you to generate up to 250 kilo-w atts (KW do it any time. Theres no monopoly on power. This whole concept that people have that they are not allowed tog enerate power is just hogwash. You can generate up to 250 kw which is more than enough to supply most homes and businesses. The reason why most people d ont do it is because its not cheaper than BEC. When you go to solar power and wind energy, what makes it unattractive int hese jurisdictions is not that we dont have enough of both, we h ave hurricanes. When you put in a solar panel, once every seven y ears you have to make sure it d oesnt blow away because its outdoors, on your roof or on the ground. Its a substantial upfront cost and, yes, you get savings over time, but still you need to comew ith the upfront cost. BEC just makes you pay a security deposit and youre in business. Mr DAguilar added: Solar power is generated in the day, andt he highest point of consumption in this country is 9 pm. You need power plants to meet our peak demands. You cant develop a power system that doesnt meety our peak demands, so BECs argument, which is quite valid, is that we still need to build the same fixed power plant to meett hat peak demand because when your solar panel is not working y oure going to turn to BEC for power. DIONISIO DAGUILAR approval from the Bahamas Supreme Court. The proposed new agreement for the sale of the 425 acres is for a lower price than the previ ously-approved sale to J5. Therefore, it is clear that the treatment of the remaining unpaid creditor, CLICO Enterprises, is not as beneficial to the creditor as the treatment in the previous plan, which would have generated a larger sum to be distributed to CLICO Enterprises. Proceeds from the ini tial 102.74-acre Wellington Preserve disposal have been used to satisfy the real estate project's US creditors. Confirming that sale's closure via a May 31, 2011, filing in the same US Bankruptcy Court in the southern district of Florida, Mr Gomez said "all allowed secured claims were paid directly out of the closing, along with closing costs. The purpose of this notice is to advise that the debtorh as paid an initial divid end of 100 per cent of the allowed claims of unsecured creditors". Some $8.527 million was paid out to these creditors. Apart from the conteste d claim of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS the only other Wellington Preserve creditor yet to be paid, said Mr Gomez, was the "general unsecured claim" of CLICO Enterprises. In his eighth report to the Supreme Court for the period to end-June 2011, Mr Gomez disclosed that the failed life and health insurer had total assets worth $45.569 million, and liabilities of $65.628 million, creating a $20.058 million solvency deficiency. Based on those figures, CLICO (Bahamas tors will recover only 69.4 per cent of what is owed to them, meaning they will receive $0.69 of every $1 owed to them. That recovery rate, though, is dependent on Mr Gomez's asset recovery success, meaning the total sum recovered could either increase or decrease from current estimates. As at end-June 2010, CLICO (Bahamas were worth some $45.885 million, its liabilities $60.086 million, leaving Bahamian policyholders and creditors then looking at sharing in only an estimated $14.201 million loss. CLICO (Bahamas at June 30, 2011, consist ed of 14,728 policies with a sum assured worth $1.313 billion. Their col lective surrender value was $19.368 million. Between April 1, 2011, and end-June, some 215 policies 209 life, six health had been surren dered by policyholders. $7.5M CUT FROM CLICO RECOVERY FROM page one F ROM page one ATLANTIS IS ATTRACTING UP TO 15000 CRUISE PASSENGERS DAILY
2011, appointment date. Further, audited accounts have not been issued since the 2008 financial year, in breach of Sec-t ion 126 of the law [Companies Act], the joint liquidators alleged, adding that staff had been retained to bring the accounts up to date. M ontaque Capital Partn ers business licence, they added, had expired on April 30, 2010. The company was prohibited from applyingf or the renewal of the Busin ess Licence until finalised financial statements and a nnual returns were o btained from Gomez & C o, the liquidators alleged. It became clear as the liquidators conducted theiri nitial investigations that the books and records of the c ompany and, in particular, i ts accounting records, are s everal months in arrears, a t least...... The liquidators were advised by the companys auditors, Gomez & Co, that they had advised the Secu-r ities Commission of the Bahamas of certain irregul arities in the accounts during their audit of the 2009 financial year. As a result of those concerns, the audit for that year has not been c ompleted. Messrs Rahming and Krys are currently awaiting ad ate for the Supreme Court to hear their petition mov ing Montaque Capital Partn ers liquidation to a courtsupervised process. They warned, though, that they were also likely to a pply to the Supreme Court for the winding-up of a Montaque affiliate, Mont aque Corporate Partners, on the grounds that the financial and corporate services providers affairs were heavily intertwined with M ontaque Capital Partners. O utlining their other concerns, they alleged that Montaque Capital Partners paid substantial funds, estimated to be in the millions,t o and on behalf of related entities. Messrs Rahminga nd Krys said they had been unable to-date to review these payments to see what they were for, and if they were for the benefit or int he best interests of the company. M ontaque Corporate Partners, they alleged, managed 277 registered B ahamian International B usiness Companies (IBCs appeared to have invest-m ents placed with Montaque Capital Partners. Based on the informat ion reviewed by the liqu idators, it appears that C orporate often paid bills on behalf of the company, a nd vice versa, which appears to account for the majority of inter-companya ccount balances in the a ccounting records, the liquidators alleged. As at September 30, 2011, Corporate appears to have a cash balance of $112. Financial statements haven ot been prepared for Corporate, and it appears that Corporates operations were intertwined with that of the company. Messrs Rahming and Krys s aid they had taken control o f Montaque Capital Part ners account balances at Royal Bank of Canada, Sco-t iabank and Credit Suisse, totalling some $163,185. Most of this, some $124,020, w as held at Royal Bank, and the remainder largely held at Credit Suisse is being transferred to the for m er account. Marketable investments were given a $109,789 valu-a tion on Montaque Capital Partners balance sheet as at April 30, 2011, the liq uidators alleged, split into $30,000 worth of equities and $798,789 described as house funds. D etailing the findings of their initial financial review, Messrs Rahming and Kryss aid some $461,229 was listed as owing to Montaque Capital Partners as at July 31, 2011, in terms of clientc ommissions due to it. Liabilities, though, showed some $249,335 was due to trade creditors for items such as rent, electricity and unpaid statutory fees. The companys unaudited financial statements for 2009 showed a total loss of $118,216, based on total revenues of $451,681 and total expenses of $548,337. Montaque Capital Partners balance sheet, as at April 30, 2009, indicated total equity (net assets $651,823, with total assets and total liabilities standing at $996,846 and $345,023 respectively. Other concerns identified by the joint liquidators included Montaque Capital Partners record keeping. They alleged there was limited or little documentation of instructions given by its clients, and claimed: Further complicating this i ssue is that the customer contact details are often non-existent or not up to date. Several Montaque Capit al Partners clients, wanting to retain anonymity, hadp laced their statements on hold mail. Based on initial investigations undertaken to date, it appears difficult to segre-g ate the company assets from the assets of customers w hich were placed with the company for investment on their behalf, the liquidat ors alleged. Moreover, the liquidators believe there may be substantial difficulty ini dentifying the source of funds from customers to investments held with cust odians on their behalf. M essrs Rahming and Krys s aid records as at July 31, 2011, showed a total of $ 7.392 million had been placed by Montaque Capital Partners between some 21c ustodians. B ut the custodians had confirmed that of the same date, they held securities worth a collective $4.531 million and a negative net cash balance of $1.357 mil l ion, resulting in a total net value of $3.174 million. This was a $4 million difference, and Messrs Rahming and Krys said they had received account balance c onfirmations from 16 of t he 21 custodians. The remaining five were said, by Montaque Capital Partnersa ccounts, to hold a collective $881,320. The majority of client i nvestments were said to be held by Macquarie Private Wealth, which had produced information showing M ontaque Capital Partners had some $197,777 worth of securities with it, but a neg-a tive cash balance of $3.125 million creating a deficit of $3.018 million. It appeared, Messrs Rah ming and Krys alleged, that Macquarie was relying on guarantees from MontaqueC apital Partners to cover the overdrawn account and close it out. T he liquidators said there were several occasions where it appeared margin liabilities accrued whichc ould not be satisfied from assets held for that purpose, either because the assets were illiquid or the assets value had decreased and was insufficient to meet margin calls. The liquidators expressed fears this may have resulted in custodians settling mar gin calls with assets belonging to other clients. They added that some custodians had continued to liquidate assets held in Montaque Capital Partners name to settle margin calls despite their appointment. Customers were allowed to maintain margin accounts with negative balances at the custodians and use penny stocks as the main equity position, the liquidators alleged. BUSINESS PAGE 4B, TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 2011 THE TRIBUNE of some $15 million (down from $28 million i n 2010), due to depreciation and financial expenditures, the IDB said of the proposedN ew Providence Water Supply and Sanitation Systems Upgrades potential impact on the Water & Sewerage Corporations financial position. From 2014 onwards, the impact of the non-revenue water component would be of some $3 million in extra yearly revenue. Water & Sewerage Corp oration will continue to need the supp ort of government transfers that would amount to some $10 million from 2014 o nwards, down from a peak of $37 mill ion in 2010. L argely due to the $8 million savings from the elimination of water bargingf rom Andros, the Water & Sewerage C orporations negative net cash flow was projected to reduce to $1.7 millionper annum from 2014 onwards. Its oper ational ratio was projected to hit 97 per cent the same year, up from the 70-80 per cent ratio achieved in previous years. Values T he IDB report said: Net operating cash flows are expected to improve over t he next years. From negative values of about $8 million to $17 million between 2005 and 210, the deficit will be reduced t o about $1.7 million, starting in 2014. It warned, though, that further i mprovements in the Water & Sewerage Corporations negative cash flow (deficitG overnment increasing water tariffs to bring them into line with the costs of w ater supply and production. A significant issue affecting the longrun self-sustainability of the Water & S ewerage Corporation is the fact that t ariffs have not been adjusted since 1999, the IDB report added. There fore, the Government has had to provide for significant funds to subsidiseo perations and investments. The document added that with the Utilities Regulation & Competition Authority (URCAu latory responsibility for the water sec t or, something the project aims to bring about, tariffs based on full real cost will be implemented over the medium run in coordination with expected service improvements. This means higher prices, but better service (in theory B ahamian consumers. E lsewhere, the IDB report said the Water & Sewerage Corporations revenues have fluctuated between $37 million and $45 million during the 20052010 period. This reflected the high level of discontinued users. Consequences This has been the consequence of poor service, low pressures and other q uality issues, the report added, indic ating this would be addressed by plans to reduce water losses from the Water & S ewerage Corporations system (nonr evenue water) from the current 50 per c ent to around 20-25 per cent. The non-revenue water component i ntends to reverse this situation, and would allow for significant increases in u sers through a win-back campaign supported by new water availability and b etter pressure controls, the IDB report said. The overall demand is expected to grow from the current 40,000 users to 50,000 users by 2017. Furthermore, it is e xpected that water availability will i ncrease from a current level of 28 litres per day to about 35 litres per day. All t hese elements will contribute to an i ncrease in revenues to levels of more t han $58 million, starting in 2014. On the Water & Sewerage Corporations operating expenses side, the IDBr eport said these had grown from $47 million to $57 million between 20052010, largely due to the increasing reliance on reverse osmosis water. Thisi s set to increase with the phase-out of barging water from Andros. Further reduction is expected from savings in desalination plants costs,r eductions in fuel and oil unit costs, and electricity costs, the IDB report said. These would allow for overall operatingc osts to remain at a level of about $60 million for the next five years. PLAN TO CUT WATER CORP LOSSES 53% F ROM page one BROKER IN BREACH OF COMPANIES ACT FROM page one
WASHINGTON Associated Press The Senate voted overw helmingly Monday to temporarily set aside its partisan standoff over President Barack Obama's jobs plan and move toward giving a modest economic spark to two potent interest groups:v eterans and businesses. In a 94-1 roll call, senators voted to start debating a measure repealing a requirement that federal, state and many local governments withhold 3 percent of theirp ayments to contractors. That bill has been lobbied by a wide swath of industry groups large and small and has no significant opposition. By the time the Senate a pproves the legislation p erhaps later this week Democrats planned to add language backed by both parties offering tax breaks toc ompanies that hire veterans a nd providing vets with employment counseling and other job-hunting services. M onday's one-sided vote s ignaled that barring an unexpected twist, the Senate was likely to send the overallm easure to the House, which returns from a recess next w eek. T he tax credits, up to $ 9,600 for companies hiring d isabled veterans who have been jobless at least six m onths, would represent the first though tiny piece of Obama's $447 billion jobs p roposal to be approved by Congress, assuming Senate and then House passage. The expected cooperation contrasted with the two parties' battling at a time when persistent 9 percent unem p loyment is keeping 14 million Americans out of work and looming as the dominant i ssue in the 2012 presidential and congressional elections. It also masked the divisionsb etween Democrats and Republicans over the keystones of Obama's jobs plan spending huge sums to r epair roads, hire teachers and give workers and companies breaks on the payroll t ax. Not coincidentally, the measure was beginning tom ove toward approval just a head of Friday's Veterans Day celebrations, when law makers stream home for s peeches and parades. And even as the two sides seemed ready to cooperate, theye xchanged partisan slings over lawmakers' refusal so far to approve the rest of the president's jobs proposal. There's no good reason to oppose this bill, not one," Obama said in the White H ouse Rose Garden as he promoted his proposed aid for veterans. "Our veterans did their jobs. It's time for Congress to do theirs." On the Senate floor, Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., cited Republican opposition that has sunk the jobs legislation so far this year and taunted, "Now wewill see whether Senate Republicans are willing to put jobs for veterans at risk as well. I certainly hope they are not. Firing back, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, RKy., complained that the Republican-run House has approved nearly two dozen jobs measures that theD emocratic-led Senate has i gnored. The reason, he said: "So the president can go around on a bus and blameC ongress for the country's p roblems." McConnell added, "It's only a matter of time before the American people catch on to the Democrats' refusal to act." T he White House says vet erans who have served since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, have a 12 percent unemployment rate, three points above the overall national average. To address that, the Democratic amendment will include Obama's proposal to create a new tax credit of $ 2,400 for companies hiring veterans who have been jobless at least four weeks, and $5,600 for vets out of work at least six months. In addi tion, he proposed doubling the existing tax credit that employers get for hiring a disabled veteran unemployed at least half a year from $4,800 to $9,600. According to a White House estimate last Septem ber, these credits would cost $90 million a minute sliver of Obama's overall plans for fighting joblessness. In addition, the Democra tic amendment will include c ompromise jobs programs w orked out between the chairs of the Senate and House Veterans Affairs com m ittees, Sen. Patty Murray, D -Wash., and Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla. These include money for veterans' job training and education at community colleges and trade schools, job c ounseling for troops before they leave the military, and expanded benefits to disabled veterans. Senate aides said the job training proposal was expected to cost around $1 billion. To pay for the veterans' tax credits and training, the measure would extend a fee the Department of Veterans A ffairs charges for guaranteeing home loans, the aides said. The veterans language is supported by groups includ ing Disabled American Veterans and Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America. By 405-16, the House approved a bill two weeks ago repealing the withholding requirement for govern ment contractors. It would cost $11.2 billion in lost rev enue over 10 years, which the measure would recoup by making it harder for some Social Security recipients toq ualify for Medicaid under O bama's health care over haul law. Repeal supporters say the m easure would leave compan ies with more money to expand. Many economists say any impact would be minor, noting that the withholding doesn't take effect until 2013. Days before that House vote, the Senate voted nar-r owly against debating a G OP version of the govern ment contractors' measure after Republicans proposedp aying for it by cutting u nspecified spending by fed eral agencies, drawing strong Democratic opposition. The withholding requirement became law five years ago, enacted by President George W. Bush and a GOPrun Congress in response toi nvestigations showing that t housands of contractors were behind on billions of dollars in taxes. S en. Jay Rockefeller, DW .Va., was the only "no" vote. An aide said he favors the jobs initiatives but oppos es using health care cuts to pay for them. BUSINESS T HE TRIBUNE TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 2011, PAGE 5B THE COLLEGE OF THE BAHAMASVisit our website at www.cob.edu.bsV ACANCY : DIRECTOR OF DIST ANCE EDUCA TION Applications are invited from suitably qualified persons for the position of Director of Distance Education ,responsible for the development and operation of The Colleges distance education programme. Duties are responsibilities include: overseeing the continued development of distance education course offerings; implementing contracts to ensureproduct quality; supporting instructional design for faculty teaching distance learning courses; directing college activities to export and import distance education courses through collaboration and taking the lead in grant seeking and developmental activities with a focus on distance education. A Masters Degree will be considered however, a Doctoral Degree is preferred in Instructional Design, Information Technology, Distance Education or related field. For a detailed job description, visit: www .cob.edu.bs/hrapply Interested candidates should submit a cover letter of interest, application form (available online at www .cob.edu.bs/hrpr ofile ), current detailed curriculum vitae, copies of transcripts, certificates and degrees and the names and contact information for three professional references to the Associate Vice President, Human Resources, The College of The Bahamas, Oakes Field Campus, Nassau, The Bahamas, P.O.Box N-4912 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org .The deadline for applications is Friday,November 11, 2011. PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA gestures with first lady Michelle Obama after she introduced him Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2011 in Hampton, Va. Heralding a splash of good news o n jobs, President Barack Obama on Wednesday praised a series of companies that have promised to hire 25,000 veterans or military spouses within two years, calling it a sign of patriotism and business savvy. He pushed his economic agenda anew to a military audience, this time with first lady Michelle Obama at his side. (AP SENATE CONSIDERS AID FOR JOBLESS VETS, CONTRACTORS
CHEYENNE, Wyo. Associated Press IBM has beaten out three competitors and won a bid to supply one of the world's most powerful supercom puters for use in climate research at a new facility in Cheyenne. The supercomputer, to be called Yellowstone, will begin running computations next summer for scientists associated with the Boulder, Colo.-based National Center for Atmospheric Research, NCAR announced Monday. The machine will be capable of 1.6 petaflops. That's 1.6 quadrillion operations per second or more than 221,000 calculations per second for every man, woman and child on Earth making it 30 times more powerful than the machine cur rently in use at NCAR's Mesa Laboratory in Boul der. It will likely be the world's fastest supercomputer dedi cated to Earth sciences and rank among the top 20 supercomputers in the world overall, said Anke Kamrath, director of operations and services for NCAR's Com putational and Information Systems Laboratory. The budget is $25 million to $35 million. IBM pitched a system with well-integrated processors that NCAR was confident would be delivered on time, Kamrath said. "Making this kind of datafriendly, on the scale of operating on many petabytes of data, is key," she said. She declined to name the other companies that tried to land the contract. The Yellowstone machine will aid a wide range of research into weather, cli mate, oceanography, air pollution, space weather, computational science, energy production and carbon sequestration. The center also will store scientific data including historical climate records. The supercomputer will be delivered around March to a purpose-built $70 million facility in a business park west of Cheyenne. The bulk of work on the building wrapped up last summer. Assembly and testing of the supercomputer will takea couple months. Researchers who reserve time on the machine in advance will then be able to log onto it from all over the world. "The 30-fold huge increase, it's huge," Kam rath said. "We're so oversubscribed now on our system, I expect that they're going to fill it up very quickly." NCAR has a long history of using supercomputers, all the way back to the Cray 1A, one of the world's first supercomputers which crunched numbers there from 1977 to 1989. The Yellowstone supercomputer will be 9.7 million times faster with 3.4 million times the disk capacity and 19 million times the central memory size of the Cray 1-A, accord ing to NCAR. NCAR also has a long relationship with International Business Machines Corp., which is thrilled to be able to provide the compu tational power to support the latest climate modeling, said David Jursik, IBM's vice president of high-per formance computing. "Computers, I think the scientists had a very good idea what forces they needed to connect but there was n't ever the computational ability to connect them because the computers weren't capable enough," Jursik said. That's beginning to change, he said. NCAR is sponsored by the National Science Foundation. The Wyoming Legislature committed $21 million for the supercomputer project in 2007. BUSINESS PAGE 6B, TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 2011 THE TRIBUNE GN-1330 NEW YORK Associated Press A LATE RALLYpushed the Dow Jones industrial average backa bove 12,000 Monday as investors responded to the latest twists in Europe's efforts to control its debtc risis. U.S. indexes were down for much of the day on worries that Italy could become the next count ry to run into trouble. Stocks turned higher after 2 p.m. Eastern on news that Greece would r eceive the latest installment of e mergency aid as long as the count ry's two main parties commit to implementing economic reformsa greed to by the country's previo us government. Investors again reacted to whatever was the latest headline out of Europe. The region's problems have been offsetting optimism a bout strong corporate earnings in the U.S. and signs of improvem ent in the economy. "Every day it seems like it's the butting of heads between whateve r the latest rumor is out of Europe with good economic data a nd corporate earnings," said Karyn Cavanaugh, a market strategist with ING Investment M anagement. "It's overshadowing the fact that earnings are on t rack to be the best year ever." T he Dow rose 85.15 points, or 0.7 percent, to close at 12,068.39. The Dow closed near its highest point of the day and had beend own as many as 102 points shortly after midday. Hewlett-Packard Co. rose 3.4 percent, the most of the 30 stocks in the Dow. T he Standard & Poor's 500 i ndex rose 7.89, or 0.6 percent, to 1 ,261.12. Last week the S&P had i ts first down week since September. The Nasdaq rose 9.10, or 0.3 percent, to 2,695.25. Worries that Italy could become the next victim of Europe's debt crisis kept investors uneasy. Italy's borrowing rates spiked M onday to the highest level since the country adopted the euro. Unlike Greece, Portugal or Ire land all of which received financ ial lifelines Italy has too much d ebt to be rescued by its Euro p ean neighbors. Prime Minister S ilvio Berlusconi has rejected sugg estions that he resign to make w ay for more cost-cutting. In Greece, the two main political parties agreed over the weekend to share power in a new government after George Papandreou said he would step aside as prime minister. European finance offi c ials agreed to release the next slice of bailout money to Greece as long as leaders of the parties agree in writing to carry out aus-t erity measures required by intern ational lenders. T he payment has been delayed by two months and is needed toa void a potentially disastrous d efault on the country's debt, which would roil financial markets and cause losses for European banks. The worries over Europe's debt problems lifted the prices of assets seen as safe havens. The yield on t he 10-year Treasury note fell to 2 .01 percent from 2.04 percent late Friday. Bond yields fall when their prices rise, reflecting an increase ind emand. Gold rose 2 percent. In corporate news: Amgen Inc. rose 5.9 percent t o $58.43, the most in the S&P 500 index, after the biotech drugmak-e r said it would buy back up to $5 b illion of its stock. Dish Network Corp. rose 5 percent to $24.66 after the satelliteTV provider announced a special $2 per share dividend and a 30 percent increase in net income. Home Depot Inc. rose 2.6 p ercent to $37.34 after getting u pgraded by analysts. R ising stocks slightly outnum bered falling ones on the New York Stock Exchange. Volume was lighter than average at 3.4 bil l ion shares. STOCKS PUSH HIGHER; DOW JONES REGAINS THE 12,000 MARK T RADERS RYAN FALVEY, l eft, and William Johnson, work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange Monday, Nov. 7, 2011. Stocks edged higher in choppy t rading Monday as investors turned their attention toward mixed headlines out of Europe. (AP SPECIALIST MICHAEL VOLPE centre, works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange Monday. (AP IBM PICKED TO SUPPLY CLIMATE SUPERCOMPUTER Roger Pone with telecom company Linx, out of Denver, works on wiring at the new NCAR-Wyoming S upercomputing Center in Cheyenne, Wyo. (AP
WASHINGTON Associated Press A MERICANS borrowed more in September to buyc ars and attend college, but they charged less to their credi t cards for a third straight month. The figures suggest that consumers are growing more cautious about takingon high-interest debt in a weak economy. Total consumer borrowing rose by $7.4 billion in September, the Federal Reserve said Monday. In August, it had fallen by the most in 16 months. The September increase reflected a 5.8 percent increase in borrowing in the category that includes car and student loans. But the catego ry that covers credit card purchases dropped 1 percent after larger declines in July and August. Credit card use has sunk nearly 19 percent since Sep tember 2008, the height of the financial crisis. For many consumers, adding debt with high interest rates is too risky when jobs are scarce, pay raises are few and unemployment has been stuck near 9 percent for more than two years. "Households continue to prefer cash over credit as employment, income and wealth prospects remain fee ble," said Gregory Daco, prin cipal U.S. economist at IHS Global Insight. The average annual percentage rate, or APR, on cred-it cards ticked up for variablerate credit cards to 14.46 per-cent and was unchanged at 13.71 percent for fixed-rate credit cards, according Bankrate.com. Auto loans are far cheaper. The average rate for a 48month new-car loan was 5.31 percent last week. The average rate for subsidized student loans was 4.5 percent last year, according to Student Loan Consolidator.com. Loans not subsidized by the federal gov e rnment are capped at 6.8 per cent through 2012. Earlier this year, many e conomists worried the econ omy was at risk of slipping back into another recession. In August, the government s aid the economy grew at an annual rate of just 0.9 percent in the first half of the year,a nd Europe's debt crisis jolted financial markets. Those fears have since eased. The economy grew at an annual rate of 2.5 percent in the July-September period, the government said, the best quarterly growth in a year. Consumer spending grew three times as fast as it had in the spring. Still, growth would have to be nearly twice as high con sistently to make a major dent in the unemployment rate, which has been stuck near 9 percent for more than two years. And economists worry that the summer spending gains can't be sustained. Americans spent more in the July-September quarter even though they earned less. And they used their savings to make up the gap. Troy Davig, an economist at Barclays Capital, said he expects consumers to borrow more in the coming months as the economy improves. "Barring any major shocks, I think we will see gradual improvement," Davig said. "But we are not expecting anything dramatic in terms of credit growth." Without more jobs and higher pay, consumers may be forced to cut back on spending. That would slow growth. Consumer spending accounts for 70 percent of economic activity. On Friday, the government said the unemployment rate dipped to 9 percent in Octo ber from 9.1 percent, where it had been stuck for three months. The nation added 80,000 jobs, barely enough to keep pace with population growth. Households began borrow ing less and saving more when the country fell into a reces sion and unemployment surged. While economists believe Americans will gradu ally increase borrowing in coming months, they do not expect consumers to load up on debt the way they did dur ing the housing boom. Americans felt wealthier then and were more willing to take on added debt because of the soaring value of their homes. The Federal Reserve's bor rowing report covers auto loans, student loans and credit cards. It excludes mortgages, home equity loans and other loans tied to real estate. BUSINESS T HE TRIBUNE TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 2011, PAGE 7B M IAMI A ssociated Press A FEDERAL JUDGEon Monday gave final approval to a $410 million settlement in a classa ction lawsuit affecting more t han 13 million Bank of America c ustomers who had debit card overdrafts during the pastd ecade. S enior U.S. District Judge James Lawrence King said the agreement was fair and reasonable, even though it drew criticism from some customers because they would only receivea fraction of what they paid in o verdraft fees. The fees were u sually $35 per occurrence. "It's really undisputed that this i s one of the largest settlements ever in a consumer case," said Aaron Podhurst, a lead attorney for the customer class. Fee The settlement became final a week after Charlotte, North Caro lina-based Bank of America b acked off a plan to charge a $5 m onthly fee for debit-card purchases. The outcry prompted other major banks, including JPMor-g an Chase & Co. and Wells Fargo & Co., to cancel trial tests of their own debit card fees. B ank attorney Laurence Hutt s aid 13.2 million Bank of Amer ica customers who had debit cards between January 2001 and May 2011 would get some pay m ent. Those who still have accounts would get an automatic credit and the others would get ac heck mailed to them. No one would have to take any action or fill out any paperwork. Barry Himmelstein, an attorn ey for customers who objected t o the deal, said he calculated that the bank actually raked in $4.5 billion through the overdraftf ees and was repaying less than 10 percent. He said the average customer in the case had $300 in overdraft fees, making them elig ible for a $27 award less than one overdraft charge from the lawsuit. It's $4.5 billion that's gone m issing from people's accounts," H immelstein said. H utt said only 46 customers f iled formal objections to the sett lement and 350 decided to opt out, meaning they could take sepa rate legal action on their own. "It's very easy for people to say on the sidelines, 'I could do b etter,'" Hutt said. "Never is a s ettlement at 100 percent of what s omebody thinks they can receive at trial. It's always a compro-m ise." C ustomers will receive a minimum of 9 percent of the fees they p aid through the settlement, Hutt added. The bank has already paid the money into an escrow a ccount. The lawsuit claimed that Bank o f America processed its debit c ard transactions in the order of highest to lowest dollar amount so it could maximize the overdraft fees customers paid. Ano verdraft occurs when the account doesn't have enough money in it to cover a debit card transaction. Similar lawsuits haveb een filed against more than 30 other banks. Despite the settlement, Bank o f America insists there was nothing improper about the processing sequence. New regulat ions enacted following the recent f inancial crisis prohibit banks from charging overdraft fees on debit cards without first gettingc ustomer permission. Many of the objections concerned the fees for the team of class-action attorneys, which w ould amount to about $123 million. Lawyers for people opposed to the settlement said that a mount should be cut down by a t least $50 million, with the m oney going back to the w ronged customers. The best use is to provide c ompensation to the class members," said Elliott Kula, who repr esents some of the objectors. Attorneys But King sided with the plaint iffs' attorneys, noting that they s pent thousands of hours on the c ase and achieved "a superb result" for the customers. "I don't see anything about this case that's simple or garden variety," the judge said. Another complaint concerned missing records for customers from 2001 through 2003, which has made them impossible to identify. The settlement will take about 14 percent of the total r epresenting an estimate for the fees paid by those customers and put the money into nonprof i t financial literacy programs. In addition, the 32 original named plaintiffs who represented the larger class will get bonuseso f up to $5,000 each, $2,500 each i f both plaintiffs are a married couple. JUDGE OKS $410M SETTLEMENT FOR BANK OF AMERICA C ONSUMER BORROWING UP, BUT CREDIT CARD USE FALLS A FEDEX EMPLOYEE arranges stacks of boxes for delivery, in New York. Americans borrowed more in September to buy cars and attend college, but they cut back on using their credit cards for a third straight month. The latest data suggest consumers are being cautiousa bout taking on high-interest debt in the weak economy. (AP
BRUSSELS Associated Press GREECEcan get a crucial 8 billion euros ($11 billion of bailout money this month if the leaders of the two main parties both commit in writing to the terms of the country's two massive bailouts and the austerity measures and economic reforms that they require, eurozone finance chiefs said Monday. That payment, which has been delayed by two months, would head off a potentially disastrous default as early as December. Jean-Claude Juncker, the Luxembourg prime minister who also chairs the eurozone finance ministers meetings, said that ministers at their gettogether in Brussels asked for a letter co-signed by the two party leaders that they will implement that program. Such cross-party commitment is important as Greece gears up for new elections early next year. "It is essential that the entire political class is now restoring the confidence that had been lost into the Greek commitment to the EU/IMF program and to the agreement of the 27th of October," said European Union Monetary Affairs Commissioner Olli Rehn. He was referring to an agreement drawn up at a summit of European leaders last month in cooperation with the International Monetary Fund. While finance ministers were meeting in Brussels, Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou and opposition party leader Antonis Samaras were trying to form a unity government that would lead the country in the meantime. "It should have been done months ago," Juncker said of the cross-party government. Italy, which has seen the interest rates on its bonds rise to a euro era record of 6.67 percent, also came in for scrutiny at the meeting Monday in Brussels. Italian Finance Minister Giulio Tremonti assured his colleagues that his country would implement the financial reforms promised last month in a letter from Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, including balancing the budget by 2013 as well as reforming pensions and deregulating the labor market. Rehn said it was crucial for Italy to implement the policies outlined in Berlusconi's letter. He said he had sent a letter to Italian authorities asking spe cific questions about the imple mentation of the program and he expected a written reply by the end of this week. He did not say what the questions were. Rehn said a technical mission would be sent to Rome on Tuesday or Wednesday to intensify surveillance of the country's fiscal policies. The finance ministers also spelled out technical details of their plan to give their bailout fund more leverage. The eurozone wants to increase the firepower of the 440 billion euros European Financial Stability Facility to 1 trillion euros by allowing it to insure bond issues from shaky countries like Italy and Spain and by seeking investors from outside the eurozone. The CEO of the EFSF, Klaus Regling, said the eurozone would create one or more coinvestment funds that could take on funding from private investors like big banks and pension funds, non-European countries, or from the International Monetary Fund. Investors in those fund would also receive some insurance against potential losses. Regling did not provide a figure for how much of potential losses would be insured but said the percentage would depend on each specific country. What will follow now will be difficult talks with potential investors and rating agencies to determine how the money can be raised. The waning confidence in the eurozone was made obvious by much lower demand for bonds issued by the EFSF Monday to raise 3 billion euros for the bailout of Ireland. The EFSF said it received orders just a little over the 3 billion euros offered, at an i nterest rate of 3.59 percent. At the EFSF's first bond issuance for Ireland in January, the fund could have sold nine times as many bonds as it was offering. Regling said that the 3.59 percent was the highest interest rate the EFSF has had to accept so far, a development he b lamed on the worsened situation financial markets and lack of detail on how the fund will be given more leverage. He said he hoped Monday's announcements would restore some confidence. BUSINESS PAGE 8B, TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8, 2011 THE TRIBUNE 5 2wk-Hi52wk-LowSecurit y P revious CloseToday's CloseChangeDaily Vol.EPS $Div $P/EYield 1.190.97AML Foods Limited1.181.180.000.1480.0408.03.39% 10.639.05Bahamas Property Fund10.6310.630.00-0.6420.080-16.6 0.75% 7.504.40Bank of Bahamas6.936.930.000.2300.10030.11.44% 0.530.17Benchmark0.180.180.00-0.0480.000N/M0.00% 2.842.55Bahamas Waste2.702.700.000.0300.09090.03.33% 1.961.77Fidelity Bank1.771.770.000.0970.04018.22.26% 1 1.108.29Cable Bahamas8.468.460.000.2450.32034.53.78% 2.802.33Colina Holdings2.382.380.001860.4380.0405.41.68% 8.508.33Commonwealth Brewery8.508.500.000.7400.00011.50.00% 7 .006.21Commonwealth Bank (S1 6.546.540.000.4960.32013.24.89% 2.001.63Consolidated Water BDRs1.831.850.020.1110.04516.72.43% 1.771.31Doctor's Hospital1.371.370.000.0740.04018.52.92% 5.504.75Famguard5.435.430.000.4980.24010.94.42% 7.505.35Finco5.355.350.000.7570.0007.10.00% 9.457.75CIBC FirstCaribbean Bank8.148.140.000.4940.35016.54.30% 6.005.00Focol (S 5.335.330.000.4350.22012.34.13% 1.001.00Focol Class B Preference1.001.000.000.0000.000N/M0.00% 7.305.58ICD Utilities7.307.300.00-0.1220.240-59.8 3.29% 10.809.80J. S. Johnson9.829.820.000.8800.64011.26.52% 10.0010.00Premier Real Estate10.0010.000.001.2070.2008.32.00% 52wk-Hi52wk-LowSecuritySymbolLast SaleChangeDaily Vol. 99.4699.46Bahamas Note 6.95 (2029BAH2999.460.00 1 00.00100.00Fidelity Bank Note 17 (Series A) +FBB17100.000.00 100.00100.00Fidelity Bank Note 22 (Series B) +FBB22100.000.00 100.00100.00Fidelity Bank Note 13 (Series C) +FBB13100.000.00 100.00100.00Fidelity Bank Note 15 (Series D) +FBB15100.000.00F INDEX: YEAR END 2008 -12.31%30 May 2013 20 November 2029 7% RoyalFidelityMerchantBank&TrustLtd(Over-The-CounterSecurities) 29 May 2015BISX LISTED & TRADED SECURITIES AS OF:7 % Interest 19 October 2022 Prime + 1.75% Prime + 1.75% 6.95%M ONDAY, 7 NOVEMBER 2011B ISX ALL SHARE INDEX: CLOSE 1,364.58 | CHG 0.02 | %CHG 0.00 | YTD -134.93 | YTD % -9.00BISX LISTED DEBT SECURITIES (Bonds trade on a Percentage Pricing basis)Maturity 1 9 October 2017 W W W.BISXBAHAMAS.COM | TELEPHONE: 242-677-BISX (2479) | FACSIMILE: 242-323-2320 52wk-Hi52wk-LowSymbolBid $ A sk $Last PriceDaily Vol.EPS $Div $P/EYield 10.065.01Bahamas SupermarketsN/AN/A14.00-2.9450.000N/M0.00% 0 .550.40RND Holdings0.350.400.550.0010.000256.60.00% 41.0029.00ABDAB30.1331.5929.004.5400.0009.030.00% 0.550.40RND Holdings0.650.750.400.0290.00024.130.00% 52wk-Hi52wk-LowFund NameNAVYTD%Last 12 Months %NAV 3MTH 1.57791.4674CFAL Bond Fund1.5779263.39%5.87%1.548717 3.02482.9020CFAL MSI Preferred Fund3.02482.63%3.94%2.981382 1.61281.5289CFAL Money Market Fund1.61512.61%4.53%1.591803 2.72022.5398Royal Fidelity Bahamas G & I Fund2.5730-5.41%-9.79% 13.849313.2825Royal Fidelity Prime Income Fund13.91804.19%5.21% 114.128999.4177CFAL Global Bond Fund114.09222.35%13.88%114.128861 118.4255101.6693CFAL Global Equity Fund118.42552.30%8.26%116.580785 1.17491.0000FG Financial Preferred Income Fund1.18773.59%4.94% 1.13431.0000FG Financial Growth Fund1.14152.06%4.07% 1.17641.0000FG Financial Diversified Fund1.18903.47%5.04% 9.9952 9.5078Royal Fidelity Bah Int'l Investment Fund Principal Protected TIGRS, Series 19.94330.98%4.58% 11.49859.8690Royal Fidelity Bah Int'l Investment Fund Principal Protected TIGRS, Series 210.3699-6.17%-2.17% 10.68139.6635Royal Fidelity Bah Int'l Investment Fund Principal Protected TIGRS, Series 310.20631.81%7.39% 8.85647.8830Royal Fidelity Int'l Fund Equities Sub Fund8.65073.01%18.38% BISX ALL SHARE INDEX 19 Dec 02 = 1,000.00 YIELD last 12 month dividends divided by closing price 52wk-Hi Highest closing price in last 52 weeks Bid $ Buying price of Colina and Fidelity 52wk-Low Lowest closing price in last 52 weeks Ask $ Selling price of Colina and fidelity Previous Close Previous day's weighted price for daily volume Last Price Last traded over-the-counter price Today's Close Current day's weighted price for daily volume Weekly Vol. Trading volume of the prior week Change Change in closing price from day to day EPS $ A company's reported earnings per share for the last 12 mths Daily Vol. Number of total shares traded today NAV Net Asset Value DIV $ Dividends per share paid in the last 12 months N/M Not Meaningful P/E Closing price divided by the last 12 month earnings FINDEX The Fidelity Bahamas Stock Index. January 1, 1994 = 100 (S) 4-for-1 Stock Split Effective Date 8/8/2007 (S1) 3-for-1 Stock Split Effective Date 7/11/200731-Oct-11 31-Jul-11 31-Oct-11TO TRADE CALL: CFAL 242-502-7010 | ROYALFIDELITY 242-356-7764 | FG CAPITAL MARKETS 242-396-4000 | COLONIAL 242-502-752531-Jul-11 30-Jun-11 31-Jul-11 5-Aug-11 30-Jun-11MARKET TERMS30-Sep-11 31-Oct-11 RoyalFidelity Merchant Bank & Trust Ltd (Over-The-Counter Securities) CFAL Securities Ltd. (Over-The-Counter Securities) BISX Listed Mutual Funds30-Jun-11 30-Sep-11 NAV 6MTH 1.535365 2.952663 1.580804 111.469744 115.762221 NAV Date 31-May-11 30-Sep-11 RI RI WASHINGTON Associated Press THE GOVERNMENTis telling a federal judge that $285 million is a fair penalty for Citigroup Inc. to pay to settle charges that it misled buyers of a complex mortgage investment ahead of the housing bust. U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff in Manhattan has blocked the settlement that the Securities and Exchange Commission reached with Citigroup last month. He implied that the settlement was insufficient given the charges and asked the government to justify the amount. The SEC said Monday that $285 million is close to what it would have won in a trial. The sum came after an extensive investigation and will go to investors harmed by Citi group's conduct, the SEC said. The SEC said the bank bet against the investment in 2007 and made $160 million, while investors lost millions. "The court should approve the proposed (settlement as fair, adequate and reasonable," the SEC said in its filing. In the settlement, Citigroup neither admitted nor denied the SEC's allegations. The $285 million was the largest amount to be paid by a Wall Street firm accused of misleading investors before the financial crisis since Goldman Sachs & Co. agreed to pay $550 million to settle similar charges last year. JPMorgan Chase & Co. resolved similar charges in June and paid $153.6 million. All the cases have involved complex investments called collateralized debt obligations. Those are securities that are backed by pools of other assets, such as mortgages. Citigroup's proposed payment includes the fees and profits it earned, plus $30 million in interest and a $95 million penalty. Rakoff had asked the SEC why that penalty was less than one-fifth of the $535 million penalty imposed on Goldman Sachs in the similar case. The SEC said it charged Goldman Sachs with securities law violations that involved intent to defraud, while the alleged fraud by Citigroup resulted from negligence on the part of the bank. That warrants a smaller penalty than intentional fraud, the agency said. US GOVTDEFENDS $285M SETTLEMENT WITH CITIGROUP EUROZONE WANTS GREECECROSS-PARTY COMMITMENT L UXEMBOURG'S P rime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker, left, speaks with German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble during a meeting of eurozone finance ministers at the EU C ouncil building in Brussels on M onday, Nov. 7, 2011. Greece's two biggest parties resumed talks Monday to agree on who should be the country's new prime minister, after reaching a historic power-sharing deal to accept a massive f inancial rescue package and p revent imminent bankruptcy. Fellow European governments will want concrete progress by the evening, when eurozone finance ministers meet to disc uss the possibility of unfreezi ng bailout loans that had been k ept on hold while the country s orted its political turmoil. (AP G REEK FINANCE MINISTER E vangelos Venizelos, right, speaks with French Finance Minister Francois Baroin, left, a nd Belgium's Finance Minister Didier Reynders, center, during a meeting of eurozone finance m inisters at the EU Council building in Brussels on Mon day. (AP