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October 16, 2017

U.S. Virgin Islands

Six Weeks After Irma, Sailor’s Family Awaits His Final Homecoming

Source: St. John Source Richard Benson, with his black-hulled ship, Goddess Athena,” in the background. (Benson family photo) A small circle of family and friends says they’re waiting for authorities in the British Virgin Islands to return the remains of St. John charter boat captain Richard Benson. Benson was the last to be identified…

Magens Bay Devastation Will Be Temporary, Optimists Say

Source: St. John Source Magens Bay after Hurricanes Irma and Maria. (Photo provided by Bruce Flamon) Magens Bay has been dubbed one of the 10 most beautiful beaches in the world by National Geographic, and may still be even after two category five hurricanes swept her brilliant white, mile-long shoreline at 175 miles per…

Virtue of the Week: Reliability

Source: St. John Source Reliability means that others can depend on you. You keep your commitments and give your best to every job. You are responsibly. You don’t forget and you don’t need to be reminded. Other people can relax, knowing things are in your reliable hands. You are practicing reliability when you: –…

Senators Frustrated by Slow Pace of Unemployment Checks

Source: St. John Source Labor Commissioner Catherine Hendry testifying before the Legislature in April. (V.I. Legislature photo by Barry Leerdam) With many Virgin Isalanders unemployed due to the hurricanes and relief distributions drying up, people urgently need unemployment checks in order to meet basic needs, senators told Labor Commissioner Catherine Hendry during a Committee…

WAPA Releases Restoration Update for October 13

Source: St. John Source Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority HURRICANE RESTORATION UPDATE ELECTRIC SYSTEM The first wave of off-island linemen contracted by WAPA to aid in its electrical restoration have begun to arrive in the territory. Some 260 linemen and engineers will be in the Virgin Islands by Sunday, another 150 by Oct.…

FEMA Launches Hurricane Recovery Facebook Page for USVI

Source: St. John Source Federal Emergency Management Agency The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has launched the FEMA U.S. Virgin Islands Facebook page to provide facts and resources to hurricane survivors, their families and the public on and off the islands. Virgin Islanders can visit www.facebook.com/FEMAUSVirginIslands to find information on federal response and recovery…

Schneider Hospital Needs Immediate Cash To Stay Open

Source: St. John Source Schneider CEO Dr. Bernard Wheatley testifies at a February Senate hearing. (V.I. Legislature photo by Barry Leerdam) “We can no longer operate without a serious influx of operating cash,” Schneider Regional Medical Center Chief Financial Officer Scott Nothnagel told V.I. senators Friday. The senators met Friday on St. Thomas as…

Judicial System Seeks Order in the Court

Source: St. John Source The Virgin Islands Supreme Court, from left, Chief Justice Rhys S. Hodge, Associate Justice Ive Arrington Swan and Associate Justice Maria M. Cabret. (Government House photo) Knocked askew by September’s super storms, the judicial system in the Virgin Islands is beginning to right itself, though it is not fully back…

Weather System May Bring Rain to the Territory

Source: St. John Source The U.S. Virgin Islands may receive some heavy rain in the next few days from a broad area of low pressure about 250 miles north of the northern Leeward Islands. In its 5 p.m. AST update Friday, the National Hurricane Center said the system is producing disorganized showers and thunderstorms,…

WAPA Releases Restoration Update for October 12

Source: St. John Source Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority HURRICANE RESTORATION UPDATE ELECTRIC SYSTEM Restoration and reconstruction crews made steady progress in both island districts on Thursday, Oct. 12. On St. Croix, line crews continued to restore circuits toward the Hannah’s Rest intersection and to Five Corners. Replacement poles were planted in the…

Power Restoration Delayed by Thieves Stealing Copper Wires

Source: St. John Source           Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority (WAPA) personnel has removed electrical meters at locations where damage was apparent to either an electrical meter base and/or weather head. In these instances, the customer is responsible for all repairs. WAPA will not reinstall meters…

Bovoni Landfill to Open Sooner: Friday, Oct. 13

Source: St. John Source Virgin Islands Waste Management Authority The Virgin Islands Waste Management Authority (VIWMA) has advised the St. Thomas and St. John communities that the Bovoni Landfill would be closed until 6 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 14. But it will be opened earlier than expected at 1 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 13.…

Friday Will See First Legislature Hearing Since Irma

Source: St. John Source Seal of the Legislature of the U.S. Virgin Islands On Friday, the V.I. Legislature will hold its first hearing since Hurricane Irma struck Sept. 6, All the senators will be meeting in the Committee of the Whole, 10 a.m. on St. Thomas, to hear testimony regarding the Territory’s status from…

Social Security Administration Gives Update for PR and USVI

Source: St. John Source Social Security Administration Social Security offices in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands currently remain closed; however, they will be reopened as soon as possible.  The agency continues to pay Social Security benefits: 99 percent by direct deposit in Puerto Rico and 98 percent in the USVI. The remaining…

VIWMA Shuts Down Susannaberg Station Until Oct. 14

Source: St. John Source Virgin Islands Waste Management Authority The Virgin Islands Waste Management Authority (VIWMA) advises the St. John public that the Susannaberg Station will be closed on Wednesday, Oct. 11 for cleaning as well as sorting and separating all waste into appropriate areas. The site will reopen and resume regular hours at…

VIWMA to Close Bovoni Landfill Until 6 a.m. October 14

Source: St. John Source Virgin Islands Waste Management Authority The Virgin Islands Waste Management Authority (VIWMA) advises the St. Thomas and St. John communities that the Bovoni Landfill will be closed on Thursday, Oct. 12, and will reopen at 6 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 14. The temporary closure will allow the contractor to stabilize…

Marriott Ownership Resorts (St. Thomas), Inc., Plaintiff, vs. Christopher M. Cunningham, Edith L. Mechling and Frenchman’s Cove Condominium Owners’ Association, Inc., Defendants

Source: St. John Source IN THE SUPERIOR COURT OF THE VIRGIN ISLANDS DIVISION OF ST. THOMAS AND ST. JOHN MARRIOTT OWNERSHIP RESORTS (ST. THOMAS), INC.,                                      Plaintiff, vs.      CHRISTOPHER M. CUNNINGHAM, EDITH L. MECHLING and FRENCHMAN’S…

WAPA Releases Restoration Update for October 10

Source: St. John Source HURRICANE RESTORATION UPDATE On St. Croix, Tuesday, crews energized areas in the vicinity of the Henry Rohlsen Airport on Feeder 8B as well as on a double circuit Feeder 6A. Removal of storm debris, which include downed poles, power lines, transformers and fuses, continued into Frederiksted in the Mount Pleasant,…

Board of Education Needs to Hear From Financial Aid Applicants

Source: St. John Source           On behalf of the 18th Virgin Islands Board of Education, Executive Director Debra E. Gottlieb requests that the following financial aid applicants contact the board’s office on Dronningens Gade (also known as Seventh-day Adventist Street), St. Thomas, no later than Tuesday, Oct. 17. SHERKENA ALEXANDER,     MALIK ALEXANDER     KENT…

St. John Update: A Week of Slow, Steady Progress

Source: St. John Source St. John residents dance to the music of Cool Sessions. There isn’t a lick of electricity produced by the Water and Power Authority on St. John, not a spark, but that isn’t stopping the recovery effort. Generators are arriving in record numbers – carried as luggage on airplanes, carted over…

Plaskett: USVI Added to Federal Children’s Health Insurance Program Bill

Source: St. John Source Delegate Stacey Plaskett (Source file photo) The House Energy and Commerce Committee recently amended the Children’s Health Insurance Program appropriation bill to provide additional Medicaid funding to the U.S. Virgin Islands, according to a news release from the office of Delegate Stacey Plaskett’s (D-VI.) Legislation to reauthorize the Children’s Health…

UVI Bulletin Board for October II

Source: St. John Source University of the Virgin Islands – St. Thomas Campus UVI to Resume Classes on Oct. 9; Fall 2017 Semester Extended to Dec. 22 Classes at the University of the Virgin Islands will resume on Monday, Oct. 9, on both campuses. UVI President David Hall announced at the Governor’s Oct. 4th…

WAPA Releases Restoration Update for October 9

Source: St. John Source Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority HURRICANE RESTORATION UPDATE ELECTRIC SYSTEM Restoration and reconstruction work continued in both districts on Monday, Oct. 9. The focus remains on reconstructing the backbone of the electrical system. The primary electrical circuits that are not currently energized must be reconstructed prior to service restoration…

New Viya Network Supporting Wireless Connections on Island

Source: St. John Source Viya CEO Alvaro Pilar demonstrates how various wireless devices work. (James Gardner photo) Viya’s fast-tracked launch of a new wireless network has helped bring internet and data services to customers across the territory in the wake of Hurricanes Irma and Maria, company officials said Monday. Speaking at a news conference…

V.I.-Puerto Rico Friendship Day: St. Croix Celebrates Again

Source: St. John Source PR VI Friendship Committee President Emerito Torres Jr. welcomes people to the condensed V.I.-Puerto Rico Friendship Day festivities. (Jamie Leonard photo) The Virgin Islands-Puerto Rico Friendship Day Block Party took a more condensed tone on Monday, shrinking the festivities from four days to one. But it was a party –…

Duncan Provides Food for 5,000 on St. Croix

Source: St. John Source People line up in Frederiksted’s Midre Cummings Park for supplies from Tim Duncan’s 21 USVI Hurricane Help on Sunday. (Ivy Hunter photo) Tim Duncan’s relief organization, 21 USVI Hurricane Help, provided 130,000 pounds of food Sunday to St. Croix residents affected by Hurricane Maria. Residents in need of aid began…

V.I. Non-Profits Struggle to Serve in the Wake of Devastating Storms

Source: St. John Source My Brothers Workshop pitched in to serve residents after hurricanes. (Kelsey Nowakowski photo) Like other segments of the population, the V.I.’s non-profit community was hit hard by September’s double hurricane hits, but charitable groups don’t have the option of closing for business while they make repairs. A survey of a…

Viya opening Customer Experience Centers Monday

Source: St. John Source Viya, the V.I.-based telecommunications and cable company, will open its Customer Experience Centers Monday on St. Thomas and St. Croix. During the territory-wide observance of Columbus Day and Virgin Islands–Puerto Rico Friendship festivities, Viya said in a news release it decided to open the centers to accommodate the schedules of…

Virtue of the Week: Self-Discipline

Source: St. John Source Self-discipline means self-control. It is doing what you really want to do, rather than being tossed around by your feelings like a leaf in the wind. You act instead of react. You get things done in an orderly and efficient way. With self-discipline, you take charge of yourself. You are…

Duncan Distributing Food Sunday in Frederiksted

Source: St. John Source NBA superstar and St Croix native Tim Duncan will return to his roots Sunday, distributing food in Frederiksted. According to a texted news release from Rashidi Clenance, Duncan will be distributing 130,000 pounds of food from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.Sunday. The dsitribution will take place at the Midre Cummings…

RTPark is Damaged, But Still Committed to Economic Development

Source: St. John Source The RTPark building on UVI’s St. Croix campus sustained heavy damage from Hurricane Maria. The Research and Technology Park building on St. Croix was the multimillion dollar jewel of the University of the Virgin Islands St. Croix campus. It won the “LEED Silver Certification” from the Green Building Certification Institute…

Schools in Both Districts to Open on October 10, 12 or 16

Source: St. John Source St. Thomas-St. John District The Virgin Islands Department of Education (VIDOE) St. Thomas – St. John District will open its 2017-18 school year on Tuesday, Oct. 10. Due to some facilities requiring extensive repair work, only 10 schools will be ready to receive students on Tuesday; however, by Oct. 16,…

Beach Advisory: Hurricane Impact

Source: St. John Source Dorsch Beach Due to the impact and effects of Hurricane Maria, the Division of Environmental Protection (DEP) anticipates that negative environmental impacts will be caused by storm water runoff, high surf zones and anticipated sewer system overflows, according to a press release issued Friday by the V.I. Department of Planning…

VP Pence Visits VI, Tours Hurricane Damage

Source: St. John Source Gov Kenneth Mapp greets Vice President Mike Pence when he arrives on St. Croix. (Government House photo) Vice President Michael R. Pence arrived in the Virgin Islands Friday morning to see the state of the damage from Hurricanes Irma and Maria, and meet with local officials. Pence went to Holy…

WAPA Releases Restoration Update for October 6

Source: St. John Source Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority HURRICANE RESTORATION UPDATE ELECTRIC SYSTEM On Thursday, St. Croix crews continued work on a double circuit for Feeders 6A and 6B from the Richmond Power Plant towards Club St. Croix and Five Corners. Crews also completed the planting of replacement poles up to the…

Banco Popular Schedules Operation Hours for Oct. 7-10

Source: St. John Source Banco Popular gives schedule of operations during October 7-10 on St. Thomas, St. Croix and Tortola. Saturday, Oct. 7:     St. Thomas         Main Branch: 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.     St. Croix         Sunny Isle Branch: 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.     Tortola, BVI         Tortola Branch: 9 a.m.…

Now at Brewers Bay: A Message for V.P. Pence

Source: St. John Source Dear Source: To highlight the fact that climate change is real, those words, made from Hurricane debris, are on the beach in giant letters for when he [Vice President Pence] flies over St. Thomas and/or lands [on St. Thomas]. 99% of scientists can’t be wrong about climate change and so…

Viya’s Customer Experience Centers to Open for Oct. 9th Holiday

Source: St. John Source Viya joins the people of the Virgin Islands in observing Columbus Day and Virgin Islands–Puerto Rico Friendship festivities. However, to accommodate the schedules of Viya customers and provide the optimum level of service, the Customer Experience Centers will be open on Monday, Oct. 9. The Customer Experience Center on St.…

400 Job Vacancies in the Territory

Source: St. John Source At a Thursday news conference, Department of Labor Commissioner Catherine A. Hendry discusses job openings in the territory. (Jamie Leonard photo) The V.I. Department of Labor has 400 job vacancies in the territory posted on its website, Labor Commissioner Catherine A. Hendry announced Thursday. Private companies on all three islands…

Consider (Advertising With) the Source

Source: St. John Source The VI Source’s reporters have been working hard throughout Irma, Maria and their aftermath to bring our readers up-to-date, relevant, and factual information. When hurricanes hit, the rumors fly like the galvanized roofing and solar panels. Without an authoritative Source of information, these rumors swirl and create confusion and panic.…

U.S. Surgeon General Visits to Help Plan Modular Hospital Units

Source: St. John Source U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams addresses the media Thursday at Government House on St. Croix. (Jamie Leonard photo) U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams was on-island Thursday to help plan modular hospital units for the territory, and Vice-President Michael R. Pence and his wife Karen will visit Friday to…

Virgin Islands Next Generation Network Board to Convene

Source: St. John Source viNGN logo The Board of Directors of the Virgin Islands Next Generation Network (viNGN) will convene at 11 a.m. on Thursday, Oct. 12, via telephonic. For more information, contact H. Mark McGibbon, Ph.D., CEO and president of viNGN at 715-8581. Link: Virgin Islands Next Generation Network Board to Convene

UVI to Resume Classes on Oct. 9; Fall Semester Extended to Dec. 22

Source: St. John Source             University of the Virgin Islands – St. Croix Campus   Classes at the University of the Virgin Islands (UVI) will resume on Monday, Oct. 9, on both campuses. UVI President David Hall announced at Governor Mapp’s Oct. 4th press conference that UVI will offer every class that was originally…

Boaters on St. John Cope with Heavy Losses

Source: St. John Source A line of beached and wrecked boats line Cruz Bay’s waterfront. Boaters on St. John have seen some pretty violent hurricanes in the past three decades, but nothing compares to Hurricane Irma, which arrived Sept. 6 with sustained winds of 185 mph. The eye of the storm passed right over…

Denmark Sending Aid to U.S. Virgin Islands

Source: St. John Source The Danish Emergency Management Agency is sending an emergency team to the U.S. Virgin Islands to assist officials in recovery efforts following the widespread devastation caused by Hurricanes Irma and Maria, the Royal Danish Consulate announced Thursday. The U.S. Virgin Islands, which was once a Danish possession known as the…

CFVI Announces $250,000 Challenge Grant to Aid in USVI Recovery

Source: St. John Source The Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands (CFVI) has announced that St. Thomas resident Richard H. Driehaus, a long-time USVI supporter, is offering a challenge grant of $250,000 to assist with the recovery and renewal of the Virgin Islands after hurricanes Irma and Maria. Having worked with CFVI on many…

WAPA Gives Restoration Update for October 4

Source: St. John Source Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority HURRICANE RESTORATION UPDATE ELECTRIC SYSTEM WAPA personnel has removed electrical meters at locations where damage was apparent to either an electrical meter base and/or weather head. In these instances, the customer is responsible for all repairs. WAPA will not reinstall meters until repairs are…

Residents Displaced From HUD Housing May Be Eligible for FEMA Help

Source: St. John Source U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development U.S. Virgin Islanders who were directly impacted by hurricanes Irma or Maria and were receiving rental assistance from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) before the storms should register with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). St. Croix, St. John…

Governor Says Storm Recovery Will Boost Government Revenues

Source: St. John Source Gov. Kenneth Mapp The U.S. Virgin Islands is still working to recover from the twin hurricanes, Irma and Maria, that battered the territory in September, but like all clouds, there is a silver lining. The storms may actually help the government’s finances, Gov. Kenneth Mapp said Wednesday in his daily…

UVI Will Start Classes Monday

Source: St. John Source UVI President David Hall confirms classes will begin Monday.. (Jamie Leonard photo) The University of the Virgin Islands will reopen Monday on both St. Thomas and St. Croix, according to David Hall, president of the university, who spoke Wednesday at Gov. Kenneth Mapp’s daily hurricane update. “We are going to…

V.I. Gets $35 Million from Feds to Fix Power System, Roads

Source: St. John Source Police Commissioner Delroy Richards, (Jaimie Leonard photo) The U.S. Virgin Islands has received $35 million dollars from the federal government to use towards power restoration and road clearing and removal, Gov. Kenneth Mapp said Wednesday in his regular news conference updating hurricane recovery in the territory. According to Mapp, the…

V.I. Board of Education to Convene October 6

Source: St. John Source The Virgin Islands Board of Education (VIBE) will convene a special meeting from 1-3 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 6, at the VIBE St. Thomas-St. John Conference Room, Melvin Evans Center AGENDA Relocation of St. Croix Office Status of Financial Aid/Scholarship Checks Continuation of VIBE operations and processing of Insurance Claims,…

VIPA Looks At Protecting Tenants, Port After Hurricanes

Source: St. John Source Crown Bay from above, before Hurricane Irma. (Kelsey Nowakowski photo) While working to protect tenants affected by Hurricanes Irma and Maria, V.I. Port Authority board members also decided Wednesday to amend its future lease agreements to include some protection for the port against tenants filing for bankruptcy. The issue came…

Trump Meets with Mapp, Agrees to V.I. Assistance

Source: St. John Source Gov. Kenneth Mapp visits with President Donald J. Trump and Melania Trump on amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge (Government House photo by Diego Conde) Gov. Kenneth Mapp met with President Donald J. Trump, first lady Melania Trump and FEMA Chief Brock Long, on Tuesday morning on the amphibious assault ship…

Unemployment Checks Will be Ready Friday, Home Depot Opens Wednesday

Source: St. John Source Dennis Brow, Department of Public Works Commissioner on St. Croix. (Jamie Leonard photo) The Department of Labor confirmed Tuesday that by Friday, residents of the Virgin Islands will begimn receiving unemployment benefit checks, Commissioner of Labor Catherine A. Hendry announced at the territory’s daily hurricane restoration news conference. Officials also…

Renters in U.S. Virgin Islands Urged to Apply for FEMA Assistance

Source: St. John Source Federal Emergency Management Agency Virgin Islands renters who experienced losses due to hurricanes Irma or Maria could be eligible for disaster-recovery assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). Grants: Renters may be eligible for grants from FEMA to help with disaster-related expenses…

How Can Things Be Different the Next Time?

Source: St. John Source Angel E. Dawson Jr. So many of us have been through this before—the anxiety when hurricane season is approaching, and then the devastation when one hits. Marilyn was devastating, particularly on St. Thomas. Before Marilyn, Hugo demolished St. Croix. If memory serves, there were 20,000 utility poles on St. Croix…

WAPA Removing Meters from Damaged Buildings

Source: St. John Source V.I. Water and Power Authority truck (V.I. WAPA photo) While most crews from the V.I. Water and Power Authority have been working their way through the territory restoring power, others have been removing connections to buildings that have been damaged by the recent hurricanes and might pose a danger if…

Plaskett, Cummings Call For Hurricane Response Hearings

Source: St. John Source Delegate to Congress Stacey Plaskett embraces a Virgin Islander after the territory was hit by two category five hurricenes. (Photo from Plaskett’s offical website) Tuesday, Rep. Elijah E. Cummings (D-MD) the ranking member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, and Del. Stacey Plaskett (D-VI) had a telephone…

VIWMA Susannaberg Transfer Station to Close Temporarily

Source: St. John Source Virgin Islands Waste Management Authority The Virgin Islands Waste Management Authority (VIWMA) advises the St. John community that the Susannaberg Transfer Station will be closed on Wednesday, Oct. 4 and Thursday, Oct. 5, for reorganization and cleaning. The Transfer Station will resume regular hours at 6 a.m. Friday, Oct. 6.…

UVI Bulletin Board for October

Source: St. John Source University of the Virgin Islands — St. Croix Campus UVI Announces Work Schedule as of Oct. 2 Starting Monday, Oct. 2, the St. Thomas Campus will resume normal working hours. The curfew has been relaxed enough so that our normal working hours from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. can be…

Cape Air Resumes Caribbean Commercial and Relief Flying

Source: St. John Source Cape Air Cape Air has announced the resumption of commercial and relief flying in the Caribbean region. A limited schedule covering Oct. 2 through Oct. 31, will offer daily flight service between the following routes:     San Juan to Mayagüez (4 RT/day)     San Juan to Vieques (3 RT/day)    …

Attorney General Confirms Five Hurricane Deaths

Source: St. John Source From left, Dr. Jacqueline Pender, Attorney General Claude Walker and acting Forensic Division Head Robert Soto. Attorney General Claude Walker on Monday confirmed that five St. Thomas residents were killed over the past few weeks in hurricane-related incidents on St. Thomas. After pausing at the beginning of his news conference…

Mapp Eases Curfew, Says He’ll Meet with Trump Tuesday

Source: St. John Source News media gather to cover Gov. Kenneth Mapp’s Monday news briefing. Gov. Kenneth Mapp on Monday announced relaxed curfew hours for the territory. The announcement was made at his daily news conference updating the territory on hurricane recovery efforts. For St. Thomas-St. John, the curfew will be in effect from…

FEMA Being ‘Flexible’ in Funding V.I. Recovery

Source: St. John Source A plane brings a load of FEMA supplies into the territory. (FEMA photo) The Federal Emergency Management Agency has already paid or committed about $34 million to the Virgin Islands in public assistance grants for recovery efforts from Hurricanes Irma and Maria, and all signs are that there will be…

More Than 400 Irma and Maria-Related Scams Reported So Far

Source: St. John Source Acting U.S. Attorney for the Virgin Islands Joycelyn Hewlett. (U.S. Department of Justice photo) The federal U.S. Attorney’s Office and local V.I. Attorney General’s Office have put together a task force to combat people using the hurricane disaster to scam people, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Virgin Islands Joycelyn Hewlett…

VIPA Board to Meet Oct. 4 on St. Thomas

Source: St. John Source Virgin Islands Port Authority The Virgin Islands Port Authority’s (VIPA) Board of Governors will conduct its regularly scheduled monthly board meeting at 10:30 a.m., Wednesday, Oct. 4.   The meeting will be held in the Crown Bay Center’s conference room at the Austin “Babe” Monsanto Marine Terminal, 161-A Sub Base, St.…

Pirate Raids Antilles School on First Day Back

Source: St. John Source Scott Bunn at Antilles School Oct 2. (Photo courtesy of Antilles School) On the first day back to class since the storms for the Antilles private school, Monday, Oct. 2, parent Scott Bunn, owner of Pirate Treasure: A Shipwreck Museum on St. Thomas treated students to some face to face…

More Than 1,400 Leave V.I. on Mercy Ship

Source: St. John Source More than 1,400 people left the U.S. Virgin Islands Saturday aboard Royal Caribbean’s Adventure of the Seas, bringing to about 4,500 the number that have been evacuated in the aftermath of Hurricanes Irma and Maria. Tourism Commissioner Beverly Nicholson-Doty said 866 passengers boarded the vessel on St. Croix on Friday,…

Virtue of the Week: Responsibility

Source: St. John Source Being responsible means others can trust you to do things with excellence. You accept accountability for your actions. When you make a mistake, you offer amends instead of excuses. Responsibility is the ability to respond ably and to make smart choices. You are practicing responsibility when you: – Take your…

VA Caribbean Healthcare System Sets Up Hotline for Relatives of Hospitalized Vets

Source: St. John Source The Veterans Administration Caribbean Healthcare System has established a Patient Family Assistance Program hotline for relatives interested in finding out information on the health conditions of their hospitalized veterans. The number is 787-641-7582 or 1-800-449-8729, extension number 19400. In addition to the hotline, relatives also have the option of contacting…

St Croix Airport to Reopen Thursday

Source: St. John Source Commissioner of Health Michelle Davis speaks Saturday at Gov. Kenneth Mapp’s daily news update. (Jamie Leonard photo) Gov. Kenneth Mapp announced Sunday that the Henry E. Rohlsen airport on St. Croix will be open for flights on Thursday, and that residents of St. Croix will start having much better cell…

Water in Fuel Affects Some on St. John

Source: St. John Source FEMA workers sign upo residents for the Blue Roofs project. There have been reports of water contamination to fuel on St. John, causing some generators to stop working, Clayton Covel of Help.NGO’s Global Disaster Immediate Response Team told St. Johnians at the Friday morning town meeting. Covel recommended generator owners…

Signs of Normalcy Returning to USVI

Source: St. John Source Postal worker Debbie Querrard hands out mail to St. John box holders, as a sense of normalcy slowly returns to the territory. (Amy Roberts photo) Gov. Kenneth Mapp announcing that he was sending his nomination of Nelson Petty Jr. as head of the Department of Public Works to the legislature…

Electrical Power 15 Percent Restored on STT, 10 Percent on STX

Source: St. John Source A WAPA crew works on a power line. (Photo provided by WAPA) The Water and Power Authority estimated that St. Thomas has experienced about 15 percent electrical power restoration since Hurricanes Irma and Maria battered the territory, while St. Croix has seen restoration totals of approximately 10 percent.St. Croix has…

St. Thomas’s King Airport Opens V.I. a Crack

Source: St. John Source Passengers crowd into the Cyril E. King Airport Thursday to get the first fights out. (V.I. Port Authority photo) When a Delta Airlines plane touched down at the Cyril King Airport on St. Thomas Thursday, shouts and applause broke out in the battered terminal’s waiting area. Eager to board were…

Plaskett Secures Important Relief Efforts From Danish Government

Source: St. John Source Delegate to Congress Stacey Plaskett Delegate to Congress Stacey Plaskett released the following statement after speaking with the Ambassador to the United States from Denmark and learning that the Danish government will soon be lending relief help to the U.S. Virgin Islands after the recent devastation from Hurricanes Irma and…

UVI Gives Instructions on Emergency Text Messaging System

Source: St. John Source University of the Virgin Islands — St. Croix Campus Add/Update Cell Phone Number – E-mail Address To participate in the University’s emergency text messaging system UVI students, faculty and staff must have current cell phone and e-mail address information included in the “Personal Information” section of their BanWeb accounts. To…

Mapp Douses Fear of Fuel Shortage

Source: St. John Source Gov. Kenneth Mapp reassures Virgin Islanders that the territory has enough fuel. (Jaime Leonard photo) The Virgin Islands has an adequate supply of fuel, Gov. Kenneth Mapp said Thursday, damping fears of a shortage. “There is enough fuel,” Mapp said at the opening of his Thursday night news conference on…

St John: Relief Officials Work to Manage Expectations

Source: St. John Source FEMA on St. John got better connected to other relief agencies in the territory through the arrival of this communications van,which arrived on the island Monday. Progress is being made in recovering from the damage two category five hurricanes that struck St. John in September, but on a range of…

The Two Sides of the Tutu Hi-Rise Coin

Source: St. John Source The planned demolition of the Tutu Hi-Rise housing community has left many residents with mixed emotions, and while some have said that their families have been there for decades and they have nowhere to go, many are more worried about the lack of options they’ve been given for relocation. The…

WAPA Convoying Poles Across St. Thomas Friday

Source: St. John Source V.I. Water and Power Authority truck (V.I. WAPA photo) Crews from the V.I. Water and Power Authority will begin begin position a shipment of about 1,300 utility poles at strategically chosen locations across St. Thomas Friday beginning 7 a.m. The poles are part of an initial shipment of additional supplies…

Public Schools, UVI Work on October Class Start

Source: St. John Source UVI President David Hall (File photo) Both the University of the Virgin Islands and V.I. public schools are planning on October openings in both districts as they struggle to deal with damage from two recent hurricanes. Public schools in both districts have been condemned due to the extent of damage…

UVI Bulletin Board for September

Source: St. John Source University of the Virgin Islands — St. Thomas Campus Students, Employees Urged to Sign Up for Bucs Alert – UVI’s Rave Emergency Notification System As UVI works to recover from two category 5 hurricanes, communication has become even more vital. All UVI students and employees are urged to sign up…

IRS Informs That Low-Income Housing Units Nationwide May be Offered to Displaced Victims of Hurricanes

Source: St. John Source Treasury — Internal Revenue Service The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has provided temporary relief from certain requirements of the Internal Revenue Code to allow owners and operators of low-income housing projects located anywhere in the United States and its possessions to provide temporary emergency housing to individuals who are displaced…

VIPA Says Airports Are Opening for Commercial Flights

Source: St. John Source V.I. Port Authority officials are optimistic the territory “will be a major player in the game” when the tourism season starts in November, but in the meantime, the focus is on resuming commercial flights at airports on St. Thomas and St. Croix and reopening the ports. Speaking on radio station…

V.I. Lawyers Volunteer Legal Aid to Hurricane Victims

Source: St. John Source A disaster aid hotline is available for V.I. residents who can’t pay for an attorney and need help with hurricane-related legal issues. Because of widespread infrastructure devastation in the territory, the hotline is operating on the mainland, through the Louisiana Civil Justice Center, which has a long history of this…

IRS Offers Help to Hurricane Victims

Source: St. John Source Treasury — Internal Revenue Service The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) today offered a rundown of key tax relief that has been made available to victims of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria. In general, the IRS is now providing relief to individuals and businesses anywhere in Florida, Georgia, Puerto Rico and…

WAPA Issues Precautionary Boil Water Advisory

Source: St. John Source Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority The Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority (WAPA) is issuing a boil water advisory for potable water customers territory-wide. Under this advisory, it is recommended that water be boiled rapidly for at least one minute in advance of consumption to eliminate any possible bacteria…

HUD Announces Disaster Assistance for U.S.V.I. Storm Victims

Source: St. John Source U.S. Housing and Urban Development U.S. Housing and Urban Development today announced it will speed federal disaster assistance to the U.S. Virgin Islands and provide support to homeowners and low-income renters forced from their homes due to Hurricane Maria. Today, President Trump issued a major disaster declaration for St. Croix…

STT-STX Ferry Delayed To Thursday or Later

Source: St. John Source The QE-IV’s, the ferry that runs the St. Thomas-St. Croix route, plans to resume limited runs Wednesday have been delayed to Thursday, according to Valance Co., the Warren Mosler company that runs the ferry. The ferry will run Thursday, Sept. 28, “if Gallows Bay is cleared,”  Shane Wray, of Valance,…

Governor Mapp Eases Curfew; ATT Stolen Generator Recovered

Source: St. John Source Gov. Kenneth Mapp, at the far left, gives his daily update on hurricane recovery efforts to the gathered news media. The update took place at Government House on St. Croix. Gov. Kenneth Mapp was upbeat Tuesday at his daily news conference, announcing that the territory may be opening up for…

St. John: Mail Is Back, Bank Reopens

Source: St. John Source St. Johnians line up at the Post Office to pick up mail. Two weeks after the second of two category five hurricanes ripped through the U.S. Virgin Islands, St. John got another link to the outside world, when mail began flowing and FirstBank opened its office on the island Tuesday.…

Reports Unclear on St. Thomas Airport Re-opening

Source: St. John Source Confusion reigned Tuesday about the potential opening of the Cyril E. King International Airport on St. Thomas, following damage by hurricanes Irma and Maria, as airline and local government officials gave conflicting information. Gov. Kenneth Mapp announced Monday that commercial flights would resume Thursday and he advised travelers to get…

STT-STX Ferry Resumes Limited Runs Wednesday

Source: St. John Source The QE-IV, the ferry that runs the St. Thomas-St. Croix route, plans to resume limited runs Wednesday, if the Coast Guard confirms the port is operational, according to Valance Co., the Warren Mosler company that runs the ferry. “We will run Wednesday 9/27 if the port is cleared,” Shane Wray, of…

Documentary About V.I. Organizations Is Released Online

Source: St. John Source My Brothers Workshop Chris Bramley has finished his first feature-length documentary film, “A Place to Be Happy,” which is now available online for free. It took him three years to make and was a true labor of love. With the help of producers Monyka Johnigan and Katie Zaytoun, the film…

FEMA Funds Available for Some Government Departments, Private Non-Profit Organizations; Sept. 28 Briefing Set

Source: St. John Source VITEMA invites all government departments and semi-autonomous agencies that have sustained damages because of Hurricanes Irma and Maria to attend the FEMA Public Assistance Grant Applicants Briefing from 10 a.m. to noon, Thursday, Sept. 28, at the Charlotte Amalie High School Auditorium. The FEMA Public Assistance Grant provides funds to…

First Mail Coming To Cruz Bay St. John Since Irma

Source: St. John Source For the first time since Hurricane Irma struck, there will be some mail on St. John Tuesday, Sept. 26 according to U.S. Postal Service representative Maureen Marion. The Cruz Bay Post Office will be provide handout of mail service Tuesday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Packages and mail are…

Storms’ Aftermath Must Become Our Opportunity

Source: St. John Source Shaun Pennington As the brown stripped sticks that once displayed the proud, verdant fullness of our paradise begin to green and grow again it would behoove us to take their budding as our inspiration for renewal. The trees will not look the same as they did before Irma and Maria,…

VIEDC Notice to Beneficiaries

Source: St. John Source VIRGIN ISLANDS ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT COMMISSION NOTICE To:                   Beneficiaries of the Virgin Islands Economic Development Program From:             Wayne L. Biggs, Jr.
                          Acting Chief Executive Officer Copy:             VIEDC Governing…

St. Croix Man Listed as Seventh Fatality from Storms

Source: St. John Source Crew from Coast Guard Cutter Joseph Napier offload 450 liters of water to Coral Bay, St. John. Napier’s crew also provided diesel fuel to the local fire department. (U.S. Coast Guard photo) A St. Croix man, apparently crushed in a mudslide, has become the seventh fatality as a result of…

Port Condition Updates Given for Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Island

Source: St. John Source The following is a port condition update for the ports in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Guayanilla, Puerto Rico – Open with exception: Peerless Oil open with restrictions; Daylight transit only Tallaboa, Puerto Rico — Open Salinas, Puerto Rico — Open San Juan Harbor, Puerto Rico — Open…

WAPA Opening Customer Call Centers

Source: St. John Source A WAPA lineman works on a transformer. (Photo provided by WAPA) The V.I. Water and Power Authority will activate call centers in both island districts, Monday, the electrical service announced Sunday evening. The call centers will be the primary means by which residents can report service interruptions as reconstruction and…

Virtue of the Week: Gentleness

Source: St. John Source Gentleness is acting and speaking in a way which is considerate and kind to others. Gentleness is moving wisely, touching softly, holding carefully, speaking quietly and thinking kindly. You are practicing gentleness when you: – Make it safe for people and animals to be around you, – Touch carefully, –…

Fuel Shortage Worries St. John

Source: St. John Source One of the classrooms at Sprauve School, which has served as a shelter since Hurricane Irma struck. (Amy Roberts photo) There is some internet, stores are open and a few places can now take credit cards on St. John. But with limited transportation to and from the sparsely populated U.S.…

SBA Disaster Assistance Available to U.S.V.I. Private Non-Profit Organizations Affected by Hurricane Irma

Source: St. John Source The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has announced today that certain Private Non-Profit organizations (PNP) in the U.S. Virgin Islands that do not provide critical services of a governmental nature may be eligible to apply for low-interest rate disaster loans.  These loans are available following a presidential disaster declaration for…

A Letter to Virgin Islanders From viNGN

Source: St. John Source Dear Source: Fellow Virgin Islanders: As the United States Virgin Islands and our neighboring sister islands begin the long road to recovery following these major tropical weather events, our patience, strength and perseverance will be tested. Psychologically, we may be drained. Our physical infrastructure has taken a severe beating –…

Military Flights Coming In, STX Truck Rack Open

Source: St. John Source A large military transport on St. Croix Friday. (V.I. National Guard photo) Although still closed to private traffic, military flights are already bringing in supplies to Hurricane Maria-stricken St. Croix. And the truck rack at Limetree Bay Terminals is up and running, so gasoline and diesel should continue to be…

Here Are The Relief Distribution Points Across the USVI

Source: St. John Source Distribution points are only open when curfew is lifted. This is current as of Friday, Sept. 22. St. Thomas: (Open 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.) Kirwan Terace Ball Park Tutu Fire Station Hotel Company Fire Station (Formerly Lovers Lane) Dorothea Fire Station Bordeaux Fire Station Ivannah Eudorah Kean High School…

WAPA Restoration Update for Friday

Source: St. John Source There is limited electricity being distributed on St. Thomas. Portions of five feeders are presently energized. WAPA is also providing electrical service to the Cyril E. King Airport and Schneider Regional Medical Center. Crews worked in the following areas on Friday: Lindbergh Bay, PG Gas / GERS, Estate Thomas and…

Federal Search and Rescue Arrives on St. Croix

Source: St. John Source Unidentified members of FEMA search and rescue team members from Virginia making plans while inspecting a map of St. Croix (Photos courtesy of the V.I. National G Federal search and rescue teams that spent the past two weeks in St. Thomas and St. John after Hurricane Irma and have arrived…

Mail Handout Service Saturday

Source: St. John Source There will be handout service for mail on Saturday in St Thomas from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Customers can pick up packages and mail at: — East End /Tutu Mall for addresses in ZIP Code 00805 — Havensight for box customers in ZIP Code 00802 Charlotte Amalie will provide…

STT-STJ Curfew -Free Movement 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Source: St. John Source Gov. Kenneth Mapp has shortened the curfew for St. Thomas and St. John to allow free movement from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. as of Friday.  The St. Croix curfew is not shortened on an ongoing basis, but Mapp has suspended it for Friday from noon to 4 p.m.

Schools, Medical Facilities Hit Hard by Maria

Source: St. John Source FEMA has shipments of supplies ready to come into the territory as soon as the ports and airport are open. (FEME photo) The Juan F. Luis Hospital was severely damaged and all 65 patients there will be evacuated beginning Friday with the help of the U.S. military, Gov. Kenneth Mapp…

St. John – Clinic Is Springing Leaks, But Seeing Patients

Source: St. John Source The Slim Mans parking lot in Cruz Bay shows the effects of Hurricane Maria. (Amy Roberts photo) The Myrah Keating Smith Clinic held up through the onslaught of Hurricane Maria Wednesday, a week after taking the worst Hurricane Irma had to offer, but officials are now wondering if it’s still…

No USVI or Puerto Rico Mail Service on Friday

Source: St. John Source There will be no mail services in the USVI or in Puerto Rico on Friday, according to U.S. Postal Service representative Maureen Marion. “The safety of our employees and our customers is paramount as we work towards solutions that will permit restoration of mail service. No postal employees are to…

St. Croix Ignored and Forgotten After Hurricane Hits

Source: St. John Source St. Croix Carden Beach Dear Source: I am a proud U.S. Virgin Islander who lives abroad, born and raised on St. Croix. I find it utterly disgusting how the United States of America have failed to even mention what has happened to St. Croix after the storm last night. St.…

VA Caribbean Healthcare System Employees Report to Work Friday

Source: St. John Source The VA Caribbean Healthcare System, which provides medical service to U.S. veterans throughout the Caribbean, has ordered all employees to report Friday for a regular working day. The Emergency Management officials of the system told employees to “be prepared to stay overnight, should you be requested to.” Headquartered on San…

HUD to Assist U.S. Virgin Islands Victims of Hurricanes

Source: St. John Source U.S. Housing and Urban Development HUD will speed federal disaster assistance to the U.S. Virgin Islands and provide support to homeowners and low-income renters forced from their homes due to Hurricane Maria, according to a press release issued Thursday by the U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Today, President Trump…

24-Hour Curfew Remains in Effect Throughout USVI

Source: St. John Source The Buccaneer Resort appears relatively unscathed, Crucians have reported, but it’s golf course has gained a difficult new water hazard. (Photo by Jeff Elvins) A 24-hour curfew remained in effect across the territory as police, Red Cross, Public Works, National Guard and other crews try to clear some of the…

Territory Begins Damage Assessment After Battering by Maria

Source: St. John Source Police patch a collapsing portion of St. Peter Mountain Road on St. Thomas. (James Gardner photo) The V.I. government is working to assess damage to the territory following the passage of Hurricane Maria, according to a statement from the Department of Tourism around 7 p.m. Wednesday. It was the first…

ALERT: Veterans Affairs Health Care System Closes Down

Source: St. John Source The Veterans Administration Health Care System (VACHS) has announced that due to the emergency situation caused by Hurricane Maria throughout the Caribbean, all facilities are closed until further notice. The main switchboard is out of service. Veterans in need of health care assistance must contact the VISN 8 Telecare at…

Many Roofs Gone on St. Croix; Flooding on St. Thomas

Source: St. John Source Hurricane Maria blew away this Cane Bay restaurant. (Facebook photo, posted on many pages, photographer unknown) Hurricane Maria now has largely moved on from blasting the U.S. Virgin Islands, and initial reports from people on the ground indicate large numbers of roofs have been blown off all over St. Croix,…

Cat 5 Hurricane Maria Is Here

Source: St. John Source As darkness fell across the Virgin Islands Tuesday, it was accompanied by the howling winds and lashing rain of Hurricane Maria, which reached the territory as ” an extremely dangerous category five hurricane,” the National Hurricane Center reported at its 11 p.m. Tuesday update. Wind speeds atop and on the…

Small Blessing: Maria’s Eye Moves A Little South

Source: St. John Source The early storm clouds of Hurricane Maria began hitting St. Croix Tuesday afternoon. (Marina Ricci photo) Hurricane Maria has moved west of it’s projected path somewhat and is now projected to pass 10 to 20 miles south of St. Croix, Gov. Kenneth Mapp said in a 5:15 p.m. Tuesday statement…

Waiting for the Storm on St Croix

Source: St. John Source St. Croix residents spent the last few days again preparing for a major storm: cleaning up yards, boarding up windows, gassing up their car and generators. Stores were hit hard. Cost U Less on St. Croix, east of Sunny Isles, was out of bottled water by noon Monday. Shelves at…

VA Caribbean Healthcare System Is Prepared for Hurricane Maria

Source: St. John Source The Veterans Administration (VA) Caribbean Healthcare System (VACHS) emergency management officials are actively monitoring Hurricane Maria as it continues its general path toward the area. Due to anticipated severe weather associated with the storm, the operating status of the VA Caribbean Healthcare System has been modified: San Juan VA Medical…

Flash Flood Watch Issued for Territory

Source: St. John Source Satellite photo of Hurricane Maria at 8:15 a.m. The National Weather Service issued a flash flood watch for the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico Tuesday morning. The watch will be in effect through Friday afternoon. Hurricane Maria is approaching the territory as a major hurricane, and is expected to…

GVI: Processing of Payrolls on Hold Until Hurricane Maria Passes

Source: St. John Source Government of the United States Virgin Islands As recovery efforts continue in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma and preparations for the threat of Hurricane Maria, Department of Finance Commissioner Valdamier Collens advises agencies and departments that all payroll processing in the STATS and Enterprise Resource Planning System (ERP) will be…

CATEGORY 5: Hurricane Maria Bears Down on USVI

Source: St. John Source Hurricane Maria is a category five storm, an “extremely dangerous major hurricane” that will begin affecting the U.S. and British Virgin Islands within the next 24 hours, according to the National Hurricane Center. At its 11 p.m. Monday update, the NHC said the storm was about 270 miles southeast of…

Governor Says “Take Maria Seriously”

Source: St. John Source Gov. Kenneth Mapp (File photo) Gov. Kenneth Mapp gave two press briefings on Monday on the approaching Hurricane Maria and the message was the same. “Take it seriously.” He urged residents to take care of what they needed before a curfew kicks in at 10 a.m. on Tuesday. The storm…

Government Simplifying Payroll for Storm

Source: St. John Source Valdamier Collens As recovery efforts continue in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma and preparations for the threat of Hurricane Maria, all payroll processing in the STATS and Enterprise Resource Planning System will be on hold until after Hurricane Maria passes, according to Finance Commissioner Valdamier Collens. This means instead of…

Atlanta Jazz Concert to Benefit USVI Hurricane Relief

Source: St. John Source Poster for Hurricane Relief Benefit Jam (From Mike Burton’s Facebook page). Artist in Residence and mentor of United Jazz Foundation Mike Burton is stepping up and supporting the young people of the USVI by organizing a hurricane relief concert in Atlanta Ga. next Sunday. All proceeds will go to re-building…

Finance Advises Agencies, Departments Must Enter Requisitions by Sept. 25

Source: St. John Source Government of the United States Virgin Islands As recovery efforts continue in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, Department of Finance Commissioner Valdamier Collens advises governmental agencies and departments that all requisitions must be entered into the Enterprise Resource Planning System (ERP) no later than Monday, Sept. 25, to encumber funds…

St. John Deals with Oncoming Storm, Outgoing Relief Workers

Source: St. John Source Destruction on Centerline Road near Gruenwald. Another storm is heading toward the territory. Many of the relief and recovery workers from the U.S. military, FEMA and other agencies are leaving, with plans to return after Hurricane Maria passes. For St. Johnians, there is a palpable sense that at best recovery…

Virtue of the Week: Compassion

Source: St. John Source Compassion is understanding and caring when someone is hurt or troubled, even if you don’t know them. It is wanting to help, even if all you can do is listen and say kind words. You forgive mistakes. You are a friend when someone needs a friend. You are practicing compassion…

Maria Now a Hurricane, Still Heading Toward V.I.

Source: St. John Source Maria is now a hurricane, and forecasters at the National Hurricane Center said Sunday it could be near major hurricane intensity when it affects portions of the Virgin Islands and Leeward Islands over the next few days, bringing dangerous wind, storm surge and rainfall hazards. “Maria is likely to affect…

Postal Service on St. Thomas Expands

Source: St. John Source     This is the official Postal Service update, issued at 9 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 16, with new information for Sunday, Sept. 17.  There will be pick-up services tomorrow.     On Sunday, Sept. 17, dozens of St. Thomas postal employees will report to work as the United States Postal Service provides…

WAPA Updates on Electrical Power and Potable Water, Sept. 16

Source: St. John Source Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority ELECTRIC SYSTEM –   ST. THOMAS-ST. JOHN Restoration crews worked Saturday in areas including: Petrus Plaza, GERS, the old VITELCO building near Western Cemetery. A major clean-up effort took place in Four Winds to remove broken poles, downed lines and other hardware. Crews also worked…

Amateur Radio Club HAM Operators Support Irma Response

Source: St. John Source Amateur Radio Operators Amateur Radio Operators located at the Virgin Islands Territory Emergency Management Agency (VITEMA) are utilizing the 60M Radio Band/CH2 (5346.5 USB) to coordinate emergency communications in the wake of Hurricane Irma. The net is continuously monitored and conducts scheduled SITREPS at 1200z and 2200z. The St. Croix…

Beach Advisory for September 15 — 21: Hurricane Jose On the Way

Source: St. John Source The Department of Planning and Natural Resources (DPNR) announces that due to the impact and continuing effects of Hurricane Irma as well as recent rainfall from Hurricane Jose, the Division of Environmental Protection (DEP) anticipates that negative environmental impacts will be caused by storm-water runoff, high surf zones and anticipated…

Governor Says Territory Must Prepare for Maria

Source: St. John Source About the worst news the U.S. Virgin Islands could receive at this time is that another storm is headed its way, but that is exactly the news that Gov. Kenneth Mapp gave at his 5 p.m. news conference on Saturday. He said all projections were that Tropical Storm/Hurricane Maria would…

St. Thomas’ Airport Remains Closed to Commercial Traffic

Source: St. John Source Cyril E. King Airport, St. Thomas, V.I. Commercial flights will resume at the Cyril E. King Airport on St. Thomas once the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is fully functional, according to V.I. Port Authority Executive Director David Mapp. Damage to the roof is preventing TSA from operating its equipment; repairs…

Where Food, Water and Tarps Are Being Distributed

Source: St. John Source The following are the distribution locations for food, water, tarps and other relief supplies, as of Friday, according to the V.I. Emergency Operations Command: St. Thomas — Kirwin Terrace Ballfield; — Tutu Fire Station; — Dorothea Fire Station; — Bordeaux Basketball Court; — Ft. Christian Parking lot; — and Hotel Company/…

UVI to ‘Innovate to Educate’ During Aftermath of Hurricane

Source: St. John Source             University of the Virgin Islands — St. Thomas Campus The University of the Virgin Islands (UVI), in the wake of Hurricane Irma, is developing an academic plan to allow its students to continue their education in spite of the damage caused by the storm. “The university is fully committed…

Duncan, Bloomberg Visit Territory, Bringing Millions In Irma Aid

Source: St. John Source Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg addresses hurricane recovery. With him, from left, are Gov. Kenneth Mapp, St Croix native and NBA star Tim Duncan, and Lt. Gov. Osbert Potter. The combined resources of the local and federal governments along with private contributions, will help get the territory through its…

Residents of Damaged Public Housing To Be Relocated

Source: St. John Source The Estate Tutu Apartments were profoundly damaged during Hurricane Irma last week and its residents will have to be moved to other locations in the coming weeks, Gov. Kenneth Mapp said during his hurricane recovery update Thursday evening. Mapp said he went to the Tutu Housing community on one of…

Volunteer Spirit Amazes FEMA Official

Source: St. John Source One of the men who oversaw New York City’s response to the damage of Hurricane Sandy said the spirit of St. Johnians has has impressed him as he begins assessing the damage to St. John from Hurricane Irma. The volunteers are “Amazing,” said John Covell who is on St. John…

Plaskett Announces First Irma Relief Grants

Source: St. John Source Delegate to Congress Stacey Plaskett Delegate to Congress Stacey Plaskett on Wednesday announced the immediate availability of $2 million for the repair or reconstruction of Federal-aid highways and roads and three other grants totaling $1.2 million for other recovery needs in the wake of Hurricane Irma. “The catastrophic destruction caused…

CDC Hurricane Support Offers Post-Hurricane Practical Information for Communities, Displaced People and Responders

Source: St. John Source U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are making detailed practical information on hurricane preparedness, response and recovery available to affected communities, people displaced by the storms and responders. There are many potential public health and safety concerns after hurricane impact.…

Virgin Islanders Step Up to the Plate During This Crisis

Source: St. John Source Dear Honorable Governor Mapp: It is with much gratitude and appreciation for your continued support of our most vulnerable population that I am taking this moment to thank you and your staff for the remarkable job of airlifting the ill and injured off St. Thomas.  Additionally, “Thank You” for announcing…

Moving Forward Despite Irma

Source: St. John Source One of my favorite maxims is “never let a crisis go to waste.” Why does this speak to me?   It reminds me that there is opportunity in the most challenging of situations.  The emphasis is not on any crisis. It is the opportunity that each crisis represents for change. Crisis…

Banco Popular Opens Some Branches and ATMs on St. Thomas

Source: St. John Source     Banco Popular On St. Thomas, the Valentino I. McBean Regional Banking Center branch in Charlotte Amalie and the Sugar Estate branch in Lockhart Gardens Shopping Center will open from 1-4 p.m. on Thursday. Both branches have operating ATMs. The Commercial Cash Processing Center on St. Thomas is operating for…

DOH Reopens 3 Clinics on St. Thomas Post Hurricane

Source: St. John Source Government of the United States Virgin Islands Department of Health After being affected by Hurricane Irma, the V.I. Department of Health announced the reopening of three of its clinics on Tuesday, Sept. 12, on St. Thomas. DOH is resuming services for the Community Health Clinic and the HIV Primary Care…

Plaskett Gives Update on Hurricane Aid

Source: St. John Source Stacey Plaskett with National Guardsman in the Virgin Islands My Fellow Virgin Islanders: I recently wrote to FEMA and made the request to President Trump for extraordinary support. I am happy to announce that the President agrees and has determined that the federal government will increase their share of the…

What’s Happening With Viya Telephone and Internet

Source: St. John Source Viya reports the Customer Experience Center on St. Croix is now open with normal operational hours of 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays. Viya’s Customer Experience Centers on St. Thomas and St. John are closed until further notice due to the…

Help Pouring In to St. John

Source: St. John Source A WAPA crew cuts away trees that are tangled around a power pole near the Westin Resort. (Amy Roberts photo) Help continues to pour in to St. John, including a military contingent that came ashore, accompanied by a FEMA official with experience in rebuilding after a hurricane. John Covell came…

Fifth USVI Fatality From Hurricane Irma

Source: St. John Source Drivers work their way around a downed pole and power lines on the road to Anna’s Retreat. (James Gardner photo) A lineman for the V.I. Water and Power Authority was fatally electrocuted late Tuesday while working to restore power at a major shopping center in St. Thomas, according to a…

Mapp Says President Trump to Visit Next Week

Source: St. John Source President Donald Trump President Donald Trump is going to visit the territory in a week or so, Gov. Kenneth Mapp said at a press conference Monday evening. Mapp said he spoke to Trump on the phone and the president assured him the territory would be “in his list” of places…

On Behalf of Those at the Bottom of the Economic Ladder

Source: St. John Source Dear Source: Good Day Governor Kenneth Mapp: I watched the Sunday 9/10 Post Hurricane Irma briefing posted on The Virgin Islands Consortium. Thank you for doing these briefings and for their open and inviting tones. Thank you also VITEMA, Virgin Islands National Guard , FEMA Federal Emergency Management Agency and the rest of the relief team. As…

DOH Reopens St. Thomas Prenatal Clinic After Hurricane

Source: St. John Source Government of the United States Virgin Islands Department of Health The V.I. Department of Health’s prenatal clinic on St. Thomas is ready to reopen its doors from noon to 4 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 12, after being closed because of Hurricane Irma. To provide services, the prenatal clinic has relocated; it…

FEMA to Hire Local Workers to Fix Irma Destruction

Source: St. John Source In partnership with the U.S. Virgin Islands, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) aims to hire dozens of workers for a variety of temporary jobs. This process is being developed, as soon as FEMA has additional information it will share on radio, television and social media channels throughout the islands.

St. Croix Division of Student Services to Register New/ Displaced St. Thomas-St. John Students at Education Headquarters

Source: St. John Source U.S, Virgin Islands Department of Education The Division of Student Services (DSS) is temporarily relocating to the school district’s Education Headquarters at 2133 Hospital Street in Christiansted, according to a press release issued today by the V.I. Department of Education. Operating from the first floor of the Education building beginning…

St. John: A Long Road to ‘Normal’

Source: St. John Source Things are looking up on St. John, but volunteers and officials alike are mindful that there’s a long way to go before the storm-battered island will return to anything like “normal.” “One thing we need to stress to the St. John community is that we’re only a short way into…

Crucians Step Up to Help Victims on Sister Islands

Source: St. John Source Volunteers load supplies aboard Caribbean Sea Adventures vessel Thursday for hurricane victims on St. Thomas, St. John and Water Island. (Photo by Sarah Ridgway) Less than 24-hours after Hurricane Irma terrorized the Caribbean, Crucians, almost unscathed in comparison, began to gather resources to help victims on the devastated sister islands…

Virtue of the Week: Kindness

Source: St. John Source Kindness is showing you care, doing some good to make life better for others. Be thoughtful about people’s needs. Show love and compassion to someone who is sad or needs your help. When you are tempted to be cruel, to criticize or tease, decide to be kind instead. You are…

Updates: How to Check on Status of Friends, Family

Source: St. John Source To help check on the status of friends and families, the American Red Cross has activated a ‘Safe and Wellness’ web and text ability for the United States Virgin Islands, according to the Emergency Operations Command Joint Information Center Concerned families are encouraged to log onto www.safeandwell.org , click on…

Help Arrives for Storm-Battered St. John

Source: St. John Source Help has arrived on St. John, bringing relief to the island that was devastated by the destructive force of Hurricane Irma. The storm that battered the island has brought out some of the best – and some of the worst – in the residents. “Things are a lot better today,”…

Witness to Irma: Reports Find Both Ruin and Resilience

Source: St. John Source A truck is upended on St. Thomas. (Adrien Austin photo) Scenes of both ruin and resilience were everywhere to be found in the territory Friday, but they weren’t easy to get to. Cell service and most communication with St. John remains extremely limited and roads blocked by debris make getting…

WAPA: Updates on Hurricane Irma Restoration

Source: St. John Source Hurricane Hole is sheltered by mangroves. Electric Division — St. Thomas o   Work continued along the route of Feeder 9B Friday with the goal of energizing the Schneider Regional Medical Center, Lockhart Elementary School and a portion of the Charlotte Amalie High School campuses.  Near the end of the day,…

VIEDA Cancels Board Meeting; VIEDA Offices Closed on St. Thomas

Source: St. John Source U.S. Virgin Islands Economic Development Authority The U.S. Virgin Islands Economic Development Authority (USVIEDA) board meeting scheduled for Tuesday, Sept. 12, in the USVIEDA office at 8000 Nisky Shopping Center, St. Thomas, and via videoconference feed at the William D. Roebuck Industrial Park, St. Croix, has been canceled until further…

SBA to Help St. Thomas-St. John Recover from Hurricane Irma

Source: St. John Source United States Small Business Administration Administrator Linda McMahon of the U.S. Small Business Administration (US-SBA) issued the following statement after the announcement of the presidential disaster declaration for Saint John and Saint Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands affected by Hurricane Irma beginning on Sept. 6: “The U.S. Small Business…

Cut Off by Irma, Coral Bay Residents Pitch In, Hang On

Source: St. John Source Damage in Cruz Bay, St. John. (David Knight Jr. photo) Cut off from the worl by the shattering impact of Hurricane Irma, Coral Bay residents were pitching in, working together to hold on. In a Friday afternoon interview, Delegate to Congress Stacey Plaskett told MSNBC News St.John had been “obliterated”…

Trump Signs $15 Billion Hurricane Relief Bill

Source: St. John Source Delegate Stacey Plaskett called Friday’s bill signing ‘a significant first step in the long road to recovery’ from Hurricane Irma.(Source file photo) President Trump on Friday signed a bill that provides $15 billion in hurricane relief. The bill, H.R. 601, the Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Requirements Act, passed the…

VIWMA Asks Community to Sort Debris Being Put on Side of Roads

Source: St. John Source The V.I. Waste Management Authority (VIWMA) is requesting the community’s support in sorting debris that is being placed on the side of the roads. The Authority is asking residents to separate the debris as follows: Debris must be separated by green waste (such as trees, branches, grass and cuttings) and…

VIWMA Announces Wastewater Collection System Surcharged

Source: St. John Source The Virgin Islands Waste Management Authority (VIWMA) informs residents that the wastewater system is surcharged with wastewater and surface water (run off) due to inclement weather caused by Hurricane Irma. The VIWMA advises residents to avoid ponding water near manholes. The Authority will continue to assess the wastewater collection system…

Jose Now Classed as ‘Major Hurricane’

Source: St. John Source The National Hurricane Center has designated Jose as a Category 3 “major hurricane,” with an established eye and winds of 120 miles an hour. The designation was announced in the NHC’s 5 p.m. Thursday update. Just hours earlier, at the 11 a.m. update, Jose had only just been elevated from…

Irma Rakes VI with Wind, Rain; Jose Is now a Hurricane

Source: St. John Source 5 p.m. satellite photo of Hurricane Irma shows the eye now north of Puerto Rico. The eye of Hurricane Irma passed over the northernmost Virgin Islands Wednesday afternoon and is now located just to the northwest of St. Thomas, lashing the region with catastrophic winds and rain, according to the…

V.I. Lack of Cooperation on Data Worries S&P Rating Agency

Source: St. John Source The territory’s debt crisis took one more turn of the spiral this week as S&P Global Ratings, one of the three major institutional credit rating companies, placed $2 billion in USVI bond debt on “CreditWatch Negative.” S&P analyst Oladunni Ososami said the move was due to the V.I. government not…

Tropical Storm Jose Nearing Hurricane Status on Irma’s Heels

Source: St. John Source While the U.S. Virgin Islands was being lashed by Hurricane Irma, a second threat loomed farther east in the Atlantic as Tropical Storm Jose – following in Irma’s footsteps – neared hurricane status. “Jose is better organized this morning,” tThe National Hurricane Center said Wednesday morning. The storm is showing…

Health Department Activates Emergency Operations

Source: St. John Source The Department of Health activated its Emergency Operations Center on St. Croix (Charles Harwood Complex) and St. Thomas (Community Health Clinic) Tuesday night, at 5:30 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. respectively. Sixty-one Health Department staff – 38 on St. Croix and 23 on St. Thomas – including nurses, support staff and…

Mapp: Break Curfew Wednesday and “You Will Be Arrested”

Source: St. John Source Gov. Kenneth Mapp (File photo) With Hurricane Irma projected to bring 80-plus mile per hour winds to St.Thomas Wednesday and, if there’s a wobble to its path, up to 180 miles per hour, Gov. Kenneth Mapp has declared a curfew all day and night Wednesday. The curfew will run at…

USVI Residents Prepare for Hurricane Irma

Source: St. John Source Kmart flashlight aisle on monday in St. Thomas (Photo by Kelsey Nowakowski). By Tuesday evening the winds and the surf had picked up around St. Thomas as residents and businesses prepared for Hurricane Irma, one of the strongest storms ever recorded in the Atlantic. Throughout the weekend residents have been…

Irma Packing 185 mph Winds Through Region

Source: St. John Source Packing winds of 185 miles an hour as of 5 p.m. Tuesday Hurricane Irma was about 12 to 18 hours from its closest approach to the U.S. Virgin Islands, according to the National Hurricane Center. Irma is only the fifth Atlantic basin hurricane with a peak wind speed of 160…

Hurricane Shelters Open 6 p.m. Tuesday – Come Early

Source: St. John Source Christiansted Boardwalk shuttered-up (Photo by VD Leonard). The V.I.Department of Human Services announced Tuesday that emergency shelters will open at 6 p.m. Hurricane Irma is now a Category 5 storms with winds upwards of 180 miles per hour. Its path is not certain and a direct hit on either St.Thomas…

Government Offices Closing for Cat 5 Irma

Source: St. John Source Satellite view of Hurricane Irma taken at 10:15 a.m. AST. With Hurricane Irma bearing down on the territory as a Category 5 hurricane, all government offices in the U.S. Virgin Islands will close early Tuesday and remain closed through Wednesday, when the brunt of the storm is expected to hit.…

viNGN Gives Important Message About Internet Service During Hurricane

Source: St. John Source Dear Source: Fellow Virgin Islanders: As the United States Virgin Islands and our neighboring sister islands prepare for the impact of the incoming Hurricane Irma, the Virgin Islands Next Generation Network (viNGN) remains an active participant in all Emergency Operation Center preparedness meetings with the Virgin Islands Territorial Management Agency…

DOH to Open Special Needs Shelters During Hurricane

Source: St. John Source The V.I. Department of Health (DOH) will operate Special Needs Shelters because of Hurricane Irma. Where are the Special Needs Shelters located? St. Croix — Charles Harwood Complex, 1st floor St. Thomas — Community Health, 2nd floor of Schneider Regional Medical Center What is a Special Needs Shelter? The Department…

USVI Public School Opening Postponed Due To Hurricane Irma

Source: St. John Source This year’s public school opening will be delayed and schools will be closed Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday this week, Gov. Kenneth Mapp announced Monday morning. Mapp asked school personnel, including teachers, to report to school Tuesday to help “batten down” the schools. The U.S. Virgin Islands will be placed on…

Hurricane Watch Issued for V.I.; Schools Closed Tuesday

Source: St. John Source A hurricane watch was issued Monday morning for all of the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico and the V.I. Department of Education canceled school Tuesday in the face of the impending arrival of Hurricane Irma. As of 11 a.m. Irma was a category 3 storm located about 770 miles…

Virtue of the Week: Love

Source: St. John Source Love is a special feeling that fills your heart. You show love in a smile, a kind word, a thoughtful act or a hug. Love is treating people and things with care and kindness because they mean so much to you. Love is contagious. It keeps spending. You are practicing…

Hurricane Watches Issued for Portions of the Leeward Islands

Source: St. John Source Hurricane watches have been issued for Antigua, Barbuda, Anguilla, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis as Hurricane Irma continues to bear down on the Caribbean, and preparations continued in the U.S Virgin Islands with sand bag distribution. A hurricane watch means that hurricane conditions – sustained winds of 74 mph or…

Smooth Course for Love City Triathlon and Aquathlon

Source: St. John Source Love City Triathlon winner Stephen Swanson from St. Croix. In spite of morning showers, 42 children and adults leaped into the water at Maho Bay Sunday as part of the Love City Triathlon and Aquathlon. Now in its 18th year, the triathlon organized by the St. John Landsharks attracted 14…

Senate Moves Board of Election Bills, Holds Ethics Bill

Source: St. John Source Attorney General Claude Walker (File photo) The Committee on Rules and Judiciary dealt Friday with bills concerning the Board of Elections, funding for school repairs, returning to work government employees who are not paying into the Government Employee Retirement System, and the creation of a government ethics commission. The bill…

St. John CZM Meeting Draws Blame and Praise

Source: St. John Source Christophena Todman talks about coral reef degradation at the CZM meeting. St. John residents had plenty to say to a team of federal evaluators who convened a meeting Thursday night to get public feedback on the territory’s Coastal Zone Management program. CZM is a federally funded program administered locally by…

Irma: Coast Guard Sets Port Condition Whiskey

Source: St. John Source Effective 8 a.m. Sunday, the Coast Guard Captain of the Port San Juan set port condition Whiskey for Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgins Islands due to the possibility of sustained gale force winds greater than 39 mph from Hurricane Irma that may arrive within 72 hours. The Captain of…

PSC Nominee Bernier Says WAPA Rates Must Come Down

Source: St. John Source Kent Bernier is sworn in Friday to testify before the Senate Committee on Rules and Judiciary. (V.I. Legislature photo) Kent Bernier, Sr., told the Committee on Rules and Judiciary Friday morning he would work to bring Water and Power Authority rates down if appointed to the Public Services Commission. Bernier…

Irma’s Strength Fluctuates as It Advances Towards V.I.

Source: St. John Source The strength of Hurricane Irma has fluctuated from Friday to Saturday as the storm continues on a westerly track towards the Caribbean. Forecasters at the National Hurricane Center still expect it to be a “major hurricane” when it arrives in the region, probably late Tuesday. Irma’s power dropped slightly Saturday,…

WMA Delays Wastewater Fees To Install Wastewater Meters

Source: St. John Source The V.I. Waste Management Authority announced Friday it is the implementation of wastewater fees will be delayed “until further notice,” for more educational meetings and to install flow meters to measure dumped wastewater. The new fee for “normal-strength” septage, the majority of loads that come from residential septic tanks and…

Just In Case: How To Prepare for a Storm

Source: St. John Source In 1995, Hurricane Marilyn left a trail of devastation in its wake. (V.I. Source file photo) Hurricane Irma was about 1,500 miles east of the U.S. Virgin Islands Friday night. That’s a long way to go and it may well still miss the territory. But at the very least, the…

Irma Turns Westward, Continues March Across the Atlantic

Source: St. John Source Hurricane Irma began its turn to the west late Friday, according to the National Hurricane Center, and while it’s not clear yet exactly where it’s heading, the U.S. Virgin Islands are right in the middle of the possible storm track. Irma was about 1,544 miles east of the U.S. Virgin…

IFB042DPWC17(C)

Source: St. John Source DEPARTMENT OF PROPERTY AND PROCUREMENT Invitation for Bid No:  IFB042DPWC17 (C) Pursuant to Title 31, Chapter 23, Section 236 of the Virgin Islands Code, the Government of the Virgin Islands is requesting bids from qualified firm(s) for the Melvin Evans Highway Pavement Rehabilitation and Safety Improvements St. Croix. Bids will…

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