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Nov 1, 2000

Draft approved to regulate architects and engineers

The environmental tax was not the only issue that dominated the Cabinet meeting on Tuesday. Also discussed was the problem that the professions of engineering and architecture are not legally regulated in Belize. The destruction caused by Hurricane Keith emphasized the point that there is a need for regulation of the professions to at least meet minimum safety standards, so that structures will be able to withstand pressures from natural disasters. In light of this, Cabinet approved draft bills that will provide for the registration of professional architects and engineers specify the qualifications necessary for registration and layout legal and general measures to regulate the practice of these professions. The bills, which will be introduced at the next session of the House of Representatives, will also give legal status to the Association of Professional Architects. Meanwhile, Cabinet has agreed to the appointment of a Belize Southside Renewal Task Force to continue the development of the southside renewal programme. Cabinet has also tasked the ministries of housing, natural resources and works to present proposals to relocate people who live in swampy areas in the city’s southside. A decision that should bring much relief to the general public is that for the first time government offices countrywide will now remain open during the weekday lunch hour. Cabinet has directed public service managers to make sure that all government offices remain open between the hours of twelve noon and one p.m. This institution of uninterrupted public service is to provide continuous service to the public.

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