V.I. will honor David Hamilton Jackson during Liberty Day events Saturday

ST. CROIX - On Saturday, the Grove Place Action Committee will put on its annual Liberty Day celebration honoring the life and legacy of David Hamilton Jackson in the park named in his honor.

Liberty Day, also known as D. Hamilton Jackson Day and Bull and Bread Day, is a local holiday during which schools, local government offices and retail stores traditionally are closed. Because the day falls on the weekend this year, government offices and schools are not affected.

(read more)

GERS ready to apply for Carambola casino license

ST. THOMAS - The Government Employees' Retirement System board almost considered applying for a gaming license for Carambola, but the action item will be placed on next month's agenda in order to give the public proper notice.

At the GERS board meeting Wednesday, GERS Administrator Austin Nibbs asked the board to add an item to the agenda that would give him the authority to submit an application to the Casino Control Commission.

(read more)

TV crew for 'Facing Waves' shoots footage on St. Croix

Filming began today on St. Croix for "Facing Waves" a half hour television show that highlights fun places to go kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding.

The host, Matt Hite, director Kelsey Thompson, and co-host Julie Roach will be filming in a number of locations, including the Paddle the Park stand-up paddleboard race Sunday on St. John.

The entire episode will focus on the U.S. Virgin Islands and will air on Outside Television, NBC Universal Sports Network, and www.carbontv.com sometime during the 2015 season.

(read more)

Bill before Senate committee would convert rent to credit toward home purchases in William's Delight

The Senate Committee on Government Services and Housing will take up three bills today, including one to legislate the terms around home sales in William's Delight.

Homeownership has been an aspiration of William's Delight residents since the public housing community was built in 1969.

However, it was not approved by the federal government until 1995, and it was not until 2001 that residents were given that option.

(read more)

Jury finds man guilty of manslaughter in shooting outside Christiansted bar

ST. CROIX - It took a V.I. Superior Court jury just more than three hours Wednesday afternoon before they returned guilty verdicts in the trial of 23-year-old Julien Viera, who was charged in the fatal shooting of another man outside a Christiansted bar in August 2013.

Viera was charged hours after the Aug. 3, 2013, shooting with first-degree murder; first-degree assault; unauthorized possession of a firearm; possession of ammunition; first-degree reckless endangerment; carrying a dangerous weapon during the commission of a crime of violence; and failure to report a firearm brought into the territory.

(read more)

Governor, Atlantic Basin Refining V.I. CEO sign operating agreement for HOVENSA

Gov. John deJongh Jr. and Robert Moore, chief executive officer of Atlantic Basin Refining V.I., signed a proposed operating agreement Wednesday that will now go before the 30th Legislature for ratification.

Atlantic Basin Refining V.I. plans to purchase HOVENSA. The proposed operating agreement officials signed Wednesday is separate and apart from the tentative sale agreement Atlantic Basin Refining has reached with the owners of HOVENSA.

(read more)

Sports show 'Facing Waves' will feature V.I. paddleboarding in upcoming episode

ST. THOMAS - Stand up paddleboarding in the U.S. Virgin Islands will be the focus of a 30-minute television show, which is filming in the territory this week.

"Facing Waves," hosted by Matt Hite, is broadcast on Outside Television and NBC's Universal Sports.

The show visits different places around the world to explore paddleboarding and other water sports.

"They contacted us, trying to see if we were interested in the coverage," Tourism Assistant Director of Communications Luana Wheatley said.

(read more)

St. John property owners demand fix for soaring property taxes at hearing

Senators spent hours Tuesday listening to the cries of St. John property owners who said they are suffering under the burden of skyrocketing property tax bills.

The 2013 real property tax bills were sent out in September using new property values coupled with new tax rates.

Based on the testimony offered Tuesday at a joint committee hearing at the Legislative Annex in Cruz Bay, the new bills are affecting St. John taxpayers much more than those on St. Thomas and St. Croix.

(read more)

Sen. Rivera-O'Reilly asks U.S. Justice Dept. to investigate Elections System

ST. CROIX - Sen. Nereida Rivera-O'Reilly said Tuesday that she has had enough of half-truths and election law violations from the Board of Elections and the V.I. Elections System and has asked the federal government to step in with an investigation.

Rivera-O'Reilly said she has a written a letter to Jack Smith, chief of the Public Integrity Division of the U.S. Justice Department's Criminal Division, with an emergency request that an investigation take place into the territory's election process and issues.

(read more)

St. Mary's students vow to stay drug free during march in honor of Red Ribbon Week

ST. CROIX - Schools and community organizations have been getting children to make a conscious decision to remain drug free with the celebration of National Red Ribbon Week through Oct. 31.

Since last week, students have been learning songs, holding marches and taking the pledge to remain drug-free.

On Tuesday, dozens of students from St. Mary's Catholic School took to the streets of Christiansted to sing loud that they pledge to avoid using drugs.

(read more)

Closing arguments today in trial of man charged in fatal shooting in Christiansted

ST. CROIX - Closing arguments are scheduled for today in the murder trial of 23-year-old Julien Viera, who is charged in a fatal shooting outside a Christiansted bar last year.

Viera is charged with first-degree murder; first-degree assault; unauthorized possession of a firearm; possession of ammunition; first-degree reckless endangerment; carrying a dangerous weapon during the commission of a crime of violence; and failure to report a firearm brought into the territory.

(read more)

Paul Golden announces plans to break ground on long-planned St. Croix resort, casino in February

ST. CROIX - A new amendment to the Hotel Development Act signed into law by the governor has provided the impetus for Paul Golden to break ground on his St. Croix Golf Resort & Casino development, which has been in the works for more than a decade.

At a press conference he called Tuesday, Golden said he will break ground by February on the proposed development of a hotel, casino and golf course on the island's south shore near Great Pond.

(read more)

Government reaches agreement with HOVENSA buyer

ST. CROIX - The Virgin Islands government has struck a deal for an operating agreement with the company that said it plans to purchase HOVENSA, Atlantic Basin Refining, Inc.

The deal, which Gov. John deJongh Jr. said he will sign today, must go before the 30th Legislature for ratification.

Atlantic Basin Refining wants to operate the shuttered facility on St. Croix's South Shore as a 300,000-barrel per day refinery.

(read more)

History of the HOVENSA agreement

HOVENSA made public its decision to cease refining oil in January 2012 and announced that it planned to operate its facility on St. Croix's South Shore as an oil storage terminal.

That decision led to negotiations between the company and the V.I. government, with an eye toward revising HOVENSA's existing concession agreement with the government.

After more than a year, those negotiations led to a proposed fourth amendment agreement that had HOVENSA agreeing to a sales process with an experienced investment banking firm.

(read more)

Joint Board OKs mandate banning voters from scanning ballots personally; steers clear of any Hansen discussion

ST. CROIX - When the Joint Board of Elections met on St. Croix on Monday, they adopted a board policy that mandates that voters across the territory will not be able to scan their ballots and register their votes personally because of a programing defect with the DS200 voting machines.

However, the board made no decision on how they plan to handle the V.I. Supreme Court opinion issued Friday ordering Sen. Alicia Hansen off the St. Croix District ballot.

(read more)

WAPA opens St. Croix solar facility, substation

The V.I. Water and Power Authority celebrated the opening and dedication of the Gregory E. Willocks Substation and the Estate Spanish Town Solar Facility on St. Croix with ribbon cuttings Monday for both facilities.

WAPA and Toshiba broke ground in August 2013 for the territory's first solar farm, adjacent to the new substation. After clearing ground and securing permits, Toshiba began construction of the 4-megawatt facility in May.

(read more)

Day of Caring events helped 470 homeless residents in V.I.

ST. THOMAS - Project Homeless Connect's "Day of Caring" events throughout the territory ended Friday on St. Thomas, where 200 volunteers assisted 230 residents at the University of the Virgin Islands Sports and Fitness Center.

The three events - which also took place this month on St. Croix, with more than 100 volunteers helping 200 residents, and St. John, with 55 volunteers serving 42 residents - offered services and goods to the territory's homeless population.

(read more)

V.I. Superior Court conducting survey on accessibility and fairness this week

The V.I. Superior Court is conducting a territorywide survey about the accessibility of the courthouses and the quality of service received at them.

On Monday, tents were set up in the courtyard of the Farrelly Justice Complex on St. Thomas, and court employees were asking people wandering through to take a few minutes to fill out the survey.

"We're trying to improve the court," Dionne Simmonds said.

(read more)

UVI raises tuition by 5 percent

ST. THOMAS - Students at the University of the Virgin Islands will face a 5 percent tuition hike next year.

At a UVI board meeting Saturday, the board approved the tuition increase proposed by UVI President David Hall.

"This is always an important and yet sensitive issue to the university," Hall said. "We have attempted to keep our tuition low and not have increases every year."

The university's tuition last was increased in 2012 for the 2013 school year, and it was also a 5 percent jump.

(read more)

St. Croix police seek man in connection with gun possession, marijuana charges

ST. CROIX - Police are seeking assistance from the community to help them find a man wanted in connection with a number of crimes.

V.I. Police spokeswoman Melody Rames said Monday that police are looking for 44-year old Vernon Khodra in connection with investigations into unauthorized possession of a firearm, cultivation of marijuana and domestic violence charges.

Police issued a wanted poster Monday afternoon and said Khodra also is known as Melon. He is about 5 feet, 7 inches tall, weighs about 168 pounds and has a dark complexion, with black hair and dark brown eyes, according to police.

(read more)

V.I. educators attend annual TEACH Conference

ST. CROIX - Hundreds of teachers and educational support staff played the role of students Monday as they received instruction as part of the St. Croix Federation of Teachers annual professional development "Together Educating America's Children" Conference.

Schools in both districts were closed on Monday, as they were when educators in the St. Thomas-St. John district attended a similar conference on Friday.

(read more)

St. John residents to be heard on taxes Higher property values behind increase

ST. THOMAS - The Senate is having a joint committee hearing on St. John on Tuesday to talk with residents about property taxes. The 2013 bills were issued in September, and many St. John property owners have seen their bills triple.

"Many of the residents and St. John property owners have voiced a very strong concern and sentiments of the impact the property taxes have had," Sen. Myron Jackson said.

(read more)

Luis case to go before Supreme Court

ST. CROIX - The case of a local doctor who contends Luis Hospital officials wrongfully suspended her in July in retaliation for her reporting patient safety concerns is set to go before the V.I. Supreme Court in November.

Dr. Deborah Appleyard, who filed her case in V.I. Superior Court in July, is suing Luis Hospital and Chief Executive Officer Dr. Kendall Griffith, along with a number of other doctors, alleging wrongful suspension. That part of the case remains in V.I. Superior Court, but a request for an injunction that could allow Appleyard to continue to work - which a judge in V.I. Superior Court denied - is on appeal to the territory's high court.

(read more)

St. Croix murder trial to resume today

ST. CROIX - The V.I. Superior Court's trial in which 23-year-old Julien Viera is charged with murder and related charges, will enter its second week when testimony resumes in V.I. Superior Court Harold Willocks' courtroom today.

Viera is charged with first-degree murder; first-degree assault; unauthorized possession of a firearm; possession of ammunition; first-degree reckless endangerment; carrying a dangerous weapon during the commission of a crime of violence; and failure to report a firearm brought into the territory.

(read more)

Consumer Affairs questions gas prices set by HOVENSA

Last week, the V.I. Department of Licensing and Consumer Affairs sent a letter to HOVENSA executives asking why the territory's rack rates have not changed for the last two months while the nation's gas prices were falling steadily.

Days later, HOVENSA released its weekly rack rates, which showed a 5 cent drop in regular gasoline prices.

The letter from DLCA Commissioner Wayne Biggs Jr. asked the refinery's officials for their pricing mechanism, so the government could better understand how HOVENSA sets it rack rates.

(read more)

Early voting put on hold on St. Croix

ST. CROIX - With more than 400 ballots already cast early voting was suspended Sunday night in the wake of the V.I. Supreme Court re-affirming its decision that Sen. Alicia Hansen be removed from the ballot.

According to a press release, Supervisor of Elections Caroline Fawkes made the decision to comply with the Supreme Court order.

It is anyone's guess when early voting will resume and what course of action the St. Croix District Board of Elections and the Supervisor of Elections will take to ensure that the ballots for the Nov. 4 General Election are in compliance with the order handed down Friday.

(read more)

Diane Magras

Ballot No. 6

Relevant non-government experience: President, Virgin Islands' Vendors' Association, 1996-2007; staff member, Sen. Alicia Hansen, 2002; community leader; worked with DLCA to obtain a federal block grant for structural improvements, 2005; obtained a small grant for aesthetic improvements after Hurricane Marilyn through Anti-litter and Beautification, 1996.

Elected/appointed government positions: None.

(read more)

Harriet Mercer

Ballot No. 5

Relevant non-government experience: Fight for the fulfillment of constitutional rights in the areas of labor and election issues, 2006-2012.

Elected/appointed government positions: N/A.

Military service: N/A.

Education: Bethune-Cookman College, Daytona Beach, Fla., B.A. in Political Science, 1991.

1. Has a local or federal tax lien ever been placed on your personal assets, on property you own or have owned or on a business you own? If yes, what is the status of the lien? No.

(read more)

Maurice Donovan Jr.

Ballot No. 4

Relevant non-government experience: Managing director, CBB Enterprises Ltd., BVI, 1998-2011; executive director, Maju Enterprises Ltd., BVI, 1998; assistant vice-president, Citibank N.A., N.Y., 1990-1994; Operations manager, Bankers Trust N.A., N.Y., 1988-1990; Operations specialist, Bankers Trust N.A., N.Y., 1984-1988.

Elected/appointed government positions: Chief of Staff, Sen. Payne, 30th Legislature, 2012 to present; Assistant Post Auditor, V.I. Legislature, 1994-1998.

(read more)

George Blackhall

Ballot No. 3

Relevant non-government experience: CEO, B&W Realty Investment, owner/manager of Nisky Center, Vitraco Shopping Center and Professional Center of Sugar Estate, 2004-present; COO, Realty Investment, 1992-2004; CEO, ReMax Real Estate, 1989-1995; marketing manager, McLaughlin Real Estate, 1984-1989; owner, other businesses, including Island Photo Services and Dairy Queen, 1969-1984.

Elected/appointed government positions: St. Thomas-St. John Board of Elections, 2002-2008.

(read more)

Ada Hodge

Ballot No. 2

Relevant non-government experience: Bureau of Internal Revenue employee for 37 years; assisted Board of Elections for many years at election time only.

Elected/appointed positions: Left blank.

Military service: Left blank.

Education: High school only.

1. Has a local or federal tax lien ever been placed on your personal assets, on property you own or have owned or on a business you own? If yes, what is the status of the lien? No.

(read more)

Rupert Ross Jr.

Ballot No. 4

Relevant non-government experience: Chairman, Frederiksted Economic Development Association; former assistant commissioner of Education; former principal, St. Croix Central High Schoolformer member, Selective Service Appeal Board, former member, Board of Directors of the Boys and Girls Club, past president, Frederiksted Jaycees, organizer and program chairman, St. Croix Sports Foundation, former chairman, St. Croix Horseracing Commission, past president, St. Croix AA Baseball Association, former vice-president, Virgin Islands Basketball Federation, former member, Urban Renewal Board, charter board member, Opportunity Industrialization Center, former member, State Job Training Coordinating Council, charter member and former vice-president, St. Croix Federation of Teachers, district governor, Rotary International, delegate to Rotary International Council on Legislation.

(read more)

Barbara Jackson-McIntosh

Ballot No. 5

Relevant non-government experience: Manager, Mid-Island Credit Union, St. Croix, current.

Elected/appointed government positions: Appointed as the Administrator of the Virgin Islands Police Department Office of Highway Safety from 2001 to 2010.

Military service: N/A

Education: New York City Technical College, A.A.S. in Marketing Management and Sales, 1988; St. Joseph College, N.Y., B.S. in Organizational Management, 1999; University of the Virgin Islands, masters in Public Administration, 2010.

(read more)

Almando Liburd

Ballot No. 6

Relevant non-government experience: Manager, uncle's bar business, 2007-2008.

Elected/appointed government positions: Senator At-large, V.I. Legislature, 1990-2005; president, 21st Legislature, 1995-1997; president, 24th Legislature, 2001-2003.

Military service: None.

Education: Inter-American University, San German, P.R., B.A. in Foreign Language, 1978; University of the Virgin Islands, graduate courses in Education Administration, 1980s.

(read more)

Ronnie Jones

Ballot No. 7

Relevant non-government experience: Credit manager, Caneel Bay Resort, 2005-2008.

Elected/appointed government positions: V.I. Career and Technical Education Board, 2008-present.

Military service: None.

Education: Herbert H. Lehman College, Bronx, N.Y., B.A. in Accounting and Mass Communications.

1. Has a local or federal tax lien ever been placed on your personal assets, on property you own or have owned or on a business you own? If yes, what is the status of the lien? No.

(read more)

Janette Millin Young

Ballot No. 23

Relevant non-government experience: Director of public relations at a local telecommunications company from 2005-2010.

Elected/appointed government positions: 29th and 30th Legislatures, 2011-2014.

Military service: N/A

Education: Loyola University, New Orleans, La., B.A., 1991,

1. Has a local or federal tax lien ever been placed on your personal assets, on property you own or have owned or on a business you own? If yes, what is the status of the lien? No.

(read more)

Marvin Blyden

Ballot No. 24

Relevant non-government experience: Management/sales, Pepsi Co.; management, Marriott's Frenchman's Reef Beach Resort.

Elected/appointed government positions: N/A.

Military service: N/A.

Education: Dickerson Business School, 1987.

1. Has a local or federal tax lien ever been placed on your personal assets, on property you own or have owned or on a business you own? If yes, what is the status of the lien? No.

(read more)

Clifford Graham

Ballot No. 21

Relevant non-government experience: Owner, CG Consulting, 2012-2013; project/field engineer, Walbridge Aldinger, Detroit, Mich., 1989-1990.

Elected/appointed government positions: 30th Legislature, 2012-present; executive director, V.I. Housing Finance Authority, 2001-2011.

Military service: None.

Education: Hampton University, Hampton, Va., B.S. in Building Technology Maintenance; 1989; University of the Virgin Islands, part-time, 1983-1986.

(read more)

Donald Cole

Ballot No. 22

Relevant non-government experience: None.

Elected/appointed government positions: 30th Legislature, 2012-present; assistant director of Libraries, Archives and Museums, 2007-2012; Public Services Commission 2006-2012; 23rd and 24th Legislatures.

Military service: None.

Education: College of the Virgin Islands, 1977-1979; Kent State University, B.A. in Political Science, 1982; University of the Virgin Islands, Master of Public Administration, 1995.

(read more)

Charlesworth Halstead

Ballot No. 18

Relevant non-government experience: None.

Elected/appointed government positions: None.

Military service: N/A.

Education: Masters in accounting; six courses in business administration.

1. Has a local or federal tax lien ever been placed on your personal assets, on property you own or have owned or on a business you own? If yes, what is the status of the lien? No.

2. Has a lender ever filed a foreclosure motion on your property? No.

(read more)

Lawrence Boschulte

Ballot No. 17

Relevant non-government experience: Site manager, Boschulte Landscaping Inc.

Elected/appointed government positions: St. Thomas-St. John District Board of Elections, 2001-present.

Military service: None.

Education: Xavier University, Cincinnati, Ohio, B.S. in Business Administration, 1991.

1. Has a local or federal tax lien ever been placed on your personal assets, on property you own or have owned or on a business you own? If yes, what is the status of the lien? No.

(read more)

Jodi Hodge

Ballot No. 19

Relevant non-government experience: None.

Elected/appointed government positions: None.

Military service: None.

Education: University of the Virgin Islands and Western Washington University, Wallawalla, Wash., 2005-2010, B.S. in Electrical Engineering.

1. Has a local or federal tax lien ever been placed on your personal assets, on property you own or have owned or on a business you own? If yes, what is the status of the lien? No.

(read more)

Justin Harrigan Sr.

Ballot No. 20

Relevant non-government experience: None.

Elected/appointed government positions: Director of the Office of Veterans Affairs, 2002-2007.

Military service: U.S. Army, 1967-1970.

Education: John Jay College, New York City, 19790-1985, B.S.

1. Has a local or federal tax lien ever been placed on your personal assets, on property you own or have owned or on a business you own? If yes, what is the status of the lien? No.

(read more)

Lawrence Olive

Ballot No. 16

Relevant non-government experience: Entrepreneur, to present.

Elected/appointed government positions: Assistant director of Motor Vehicles, 2004-2007; director of Motor Vehicles under the V.I. Police Department, 1998-2004.

Military service: N/A.

Education: Charlotte Amalie High School Class of 1982.

1. Has a local or federal tax lien ever been placed on your personal assets, on property you own or have owned or on a business you own? If yes, what is the status of the lien? No.

(read more)

Jean Forde

Ballot No. 15

Relevant non-government experience: Sales/marketing director, Ottley Communications, 1997-present; president/manager, Forde's Laundromat, 1992-present; assistant executive director, St. Thomas-St. John Chamber of Commerce, 1989-1997; general manager, West Indian Burgers, Inc. D/B/A Burger King, 1986-1989.

Elected/appointed government positions: No answer.

Military service: No answer.

(read more)

Wilma Marsh-Monsanto

Ballot No. 13

Relevant non-government experience: Ongoing advocate for citizens and their rights.

Elected/appointed government positions: St. Thomas-St. John Board of Elections, 2010-2014.

Military service: N/A.

Education: N/A.

1. Has a local or federal tax lien ever been placed on your personal assets, on property you own or have owned or on a business you own? If yes, what is the status of the lien? No.

(read more)

Bruce Flamon

Ballot No. 14

Relevant non-government experience: President, 1-855 VIServices, 2011-present; taxi owner/operator, 1998-present; president, Certified Guides Association, 2007; president, Mobile Food Vendors Association, 1998; president, Frenchman's Bay Neighborhood Watch Association, 1998; president and founder of Smokebuster's Jr. Club for Kids, 1994, Operation Push and Urban League, 1993-1998.

Elected/appointed government positions: N/A.

(read more)

Sammuel Sanes

Ballot No. 20

Relevant non-government experience: Please see resume.

Elected/appointed government positions: 28th, 29th and 30th Legislatures; legislative secretary, 28th and 29th Legislatures; Senate vice-president, 30th Legislature.

Military service: U.S. Navy.

Education: University of the Virgin Islands, M. Ed. in Educational Counseling, 2008; Keiser College, A.A. in Paralegal Studies, 1998: Florida Memorial College, B.A. in Public Administration, 1992.

(read more)

Novelle Francis Jr.

Ballot No. 19

Relevant non-government experience: Business owner, 2011-current; V.I. Police Department, 1987-2011; volunteer/founding member of St. Croix Rescue Squad, 1980-2005.

Elected/appointed government positions: V.I. Police Commissioner, 2009; assistant police commissioner, 2007; territorial chief of police, 2001; deputy chief of police, 1997.

Military service: None.

Education: John Jay College, 1984-1987; University of Phoenix, 2011-2013.

(read more)

Tregenza Roach

Ballot No. 11

Relevant non-government experience: United Nations expert on Constitutional Processes, Grenada, St. Kitts, Nevis, 2007-2009; public education coordinator supporting Fifth Constitutional Convention, University of the Virgin Islands, 2006-2008; adjunct professor, University of the Virgin Islands, 1999-2011; executive director, V.I. Board of Education, 2003-2006; legal counsel, V.I. Education Department, 1995-2003; attorney, Bornn, Bornn, Handy Law Firm, 1991-1995.

(read more)


\

Best of the VI

Best of the VI: After more than 100,000 text and Facebook votes were cast, it is time to unveil the winners.

Daily News

Try our e-newspaper delivered to you every day

Island Trader

Good stuff, best buys, great fun

Crucian Trader

Celebrating St. Croix History, Culture and People

Island Action

Your complete guide to where to go and what to do this week in the Virgin Islands.