St. John’s Craig Barshinger has signed up to make another run at the At-Large seat in the VI Senate. He’s been trying in each election since 1996, collecting 40 percent of the vote in 2002, but still losing to incumbent Sen. Almando Liburd. Barshinger is one of 51 people who filed to compete for the 15 seats which are up for election on Nov. 2. All 15 incumbents are running for reelection and have presented their petitions. A primary election will be held Sept. 11. Thirty candidates are running for 7 seats from St. Croix, 16 on St. Thomas for 7 spots, and five people will contest the At Large seat. VI delegate to Congress Donna Christensen is running for her fifth term but has opposition from three candidates.
A Mayor-Council form of managing St. John has been part of discussions being held by an Island Council Committee formed with the encouragement of Gov. Charles Turnbull. The Committee sponsored by the St. John Community Foundation met at Fish Trap restaurant to proceed with work on a proposal for the Governor. Craig Barshinger suggested locals could vote for members of an island council, despite concern voiced by one woman who worried people from St. Thomas and St. Croix would also participate in the balloting and overwhelm St. John citizens’ interests, the St. John Source reported. Carol DeSenne, executive director of the Foundation, said the committee plans town meetings and will distribute brochures to involve more people in the discussion and planning.
J.U.B. King and Associates of St. Thomas has been awarded a $205,900 contract to install more attractive security fencing at the ferry docks at Red Hook and Cruz Bay. The firm will do similar work at the Crown Bay cargo and passenger docks as part of security precautions required by Homeland Security. The fencing in Cruz Bay, replacing standard cyclone fence, will be made of slim, silver 6-foot high vertical bars, with horizontal bars in a darker trim, the Virgin Islands Daily News reported. The work is expected to be completed before the end of the year.
Dozens of islanders filled a meeting room at the Legislature Building in Cruz Bay to complain about problems with the police department recently. Commissioner Elton Lewis attended and said the department is on a crusade to polish its image by teaching officers how to treat residents and visitors, according to a report in the St. John Source. Lewis said officers will get “customer-centric training” in hopes of improving relations with the community. “It’s 20 percent technology, but we need the human touch,” he said.
The big news is that Morgan’s Mango MAY have been sold. We’re trying to find out. But the home of fantastic Argentine and Cuban-inspired food, offered for sale almost two years, has been removed from the Multiple Listing Service. Morgan’s was priced at $1.4 million.
The number of houses offered for sale by the Multiple Listing Service continues to shrink, falling to 34 by the weekend. Bargain hunters apparently moved quickly, snapping up a $450,000 listing at Glucksberg a week after it appeared on the MLS. Also leaving the list was a 3-bedroom/3-bath three-year-old Carolina residence, listed at $1.2 million. Added to the list this week, also in Carolina, a $1.55 million 4-bedroom/5-bath with pool property.
There’s an update to last week’s report on the listing of Dr. Cool Inc., the island air conditioning installation and maintenance specialist. The price, originally listed at $225,000, has been raised to $250,000. The owner of the business e-mailed News of St. John and said he does not plan to leave the island.
The inventory of land for sale increased by 3 to 118 parcels. Condo listings, steady at 8. Timeshare unit listings up 2 to 99.
Gerald Singer reports the a grand new guardhouse at Caneel is completed, after several months of hammering, stone chipping, and construction. But he’s perplexed as to why it was built, replacing a more modest stone-faced kiosk at the entrance to the Virgin Islands resort.
When we saw it being built in February, the project appeared to have three different buildings, one of them looked big enough to be a guest room, maybe.
Anyway, Singer says the structure is done but wonders what was the need? When we showed some photos of the project in progress, one commenter may have hit the nail on the head when he suggested it was related to Homeland Security, like the silly black gates at the ferry. They certainly will protect you from terrorists coming to the island via the dock, but do nothing at all if you come by dinghy, on either side.
Singer's blog is St. John Life. Read it here.