The opposition party in Barbuda, the Barbuda People’s Movement (BPM), has again raised concerns about plans for the redevelopment of the K-Club.
Chairman Mckenzie Frank was particularly concerned over a plans for sand mining and to construct casinos on the sister isle.
Frank said while the Barbuda Council currently makes EC $47 per ton for sand mined out of Barbuda, it stands to make far less under the K-Club agreement.
“According to the document they want to pay US $5, which is something like EC $12. How can that be? Because, at the moment, the council lacks revenue.”
Frank added that paying the sum proposed in the document would be akin to providing yet another concession.
As required by the Barbuda Land Act, residents were consulted last night on actor Robert De Niro’s proposal to buy and redevelop the K-Club Hotel.
Frank also proposed further discussion on the decision to allow casinos to be built on Barbuda amidst concerns from the religious community.
Deputy Chairman of the BPM, Montague Gore, is also concerned that the developers are seeking to control the land for the next 200 years. He said such an agreement could disenfranchise the Barbudan public.
“We have a policy where we allowed 99 years with option along the old guidelines, but based on the new Land Act it is requiring 49 to 50 years plus an extension if required,” he said.
“It’s really amazing that they’re asking for 198 up front. That means our land stock is going to be tied up forever. Plus, you have the tax holidays and you have all the different stuff that comes with these developments. I understand that, but at the end of the day, the people of Barbuda are asking what’s in it for us?”
(More in today’s Daily Observer)