Only one member of St. Croix Board of Elections shows up to emergency meeting about office mold


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ST. CROIX - District Board of Elections Chairman Adelbert Bryan said during an emergency meeting Wednesday that most of the issues he had expected to deal with concerning mold in the Elections System Office will have to be taken up during next month's regular scheduled meeting.

The emergency meeting was scheduled last week to have discussion and updates on the status of a mold situation at the office, which includes a number of complaints from employees who said they had gotten sick.

Bryan was the only board member who showed up for the meeting Wednesday, so there was no quorum. He said Lilliana Belardo de O'Neal had been excused from the meeting because she is off-island, but he had no idea why other members were not present.

"I know the other members are right here on St. Croix and could have come to the meeting," he said.

St. Croix Deputy Elections Supervisor Genevieve Whitaker distributed copies of emails responding to the notice of the meeting in which board members Raymond Williams and Roland Moolenaar expressed that they believed the matter of mold in the office was outside of the board's responsibility and is a matter that should be handled by the Elections supervisor.

Williams said that it is a waste of the board's time and money to conduct the emergency meeting and that he finds it unfortunate that Bryan believes the board should be guided by his bad leadership.

"Those of you who wish to show up to earn another $75 should be ashamed," he wrote.

Bryan said the issue is important because employees are being affected and the board should address that.

He said the landlords of the space being rented have been notified for months about the mold and have done nothing to address the issue and the board needs to act.

Prior to Wednesday's meeting, Elections Supervisor Caroline Fawkes said she realized the severity of the problem, which seemingly originated near the large voter registration log books. She said she had the doors taken off the cabinet and had the books cleaned last week.

The next meeting of the St. Croix Board of Elections is scheduled for Feb. 5 at 9:30 a.m.

- Contact reporter Fiona Stokes at 714-9149 or email fstokes@dailynews.vi.

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