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Rates To Rise Amid Reforms Of Surrey Industry

photo

Glenys Hanna Martin

By AVA TURNQUEST

Tribune Staff Reporter

aturnquest@tribunemedia.net

LONG sought-after rate increases for horse and carriage drivers are finally on the horizon, according to Transport Minister Glenys Hanna-Martin.

Mrs Hanna-Martin confirmed yesterday that widespread reform of the surrey industry could be realised within the next two months, with talks between owners and regulators progressing smoothly.

Mrs Hanna-Martin said: “We are in the final stages of an action plan which is expected create a new paradigm in the industry.

“The strategies forthcoming will involve issues relative to stabling, to ensuring there is qualified personnel to inspect the animals because we have veterinarians, but I am being advised that there is no one who is specialized.”

She added: “Also in the discussion is the increase in the rates, which have not changed since the 1960s.”

Mrs Hanna-Martin said there were some five or six horse and carriage owners, adding that strategies discussed focused on quality training for drivers and new tour routes.

The Cabs and Hackney Board met with stakeholders and invited observers on Wednesday, according to Mrs Hanna Martin, who said the group has set a fixed timeline for the implementation of modernized regulations, a review of operations at Prince George Wharf, and the upgrade of carriages.

Earlier this week, the Bahamas Humane Society issued an ultimatum to the government over long-standing concerns about the condition of surrey horses in New Providence.

President Kim Aranha warned that the animal rights organisation will withdraw from government committees unless significant improvements are made by December 15.

However, Mrs Hanna-Martin explained yesterday that fast-approaching critical reforms are driven by extensive dialogue with stakeholders, including the Cabs and Hackney Board, of which the Bahamas Humane Society is a member.

Mrs Hanna-Martin said: “I think that today, in this era, the ingredients are there for a collaboration – that is unprecedented. There is just a dialogue that has developed that is very hopeful, moreso than in the past.”

She added: “This (Cabs and Hackney) board has the Humane Society on it, and is chaired by a veterinarian for the first time ever. It is usually headed by Road Traffic. There’s another private veterinarian on it as well and other agencies. We sought to enhance focus on animal well-being, and they have been in prolonged discussions on all of the issues and now at the stage where we can unfold a plan shortly that will really create a new and improved surrey product.”

Comments

Reality_Check 5 years, 7 months ago

We borrowed a fortune for studies to improve traffic flows, fix roads, etc. and this dimwit Hanna wants to keep horse-pulled carriages on our roads! Is she for real !! The effect of our extremely hot summer temperatures on our asphalt roads creates a very dangerous environment even for people sitting in their air-conditioned vehicles.....the stress we experience in traffic during summer time from flaring tempers on searing, scorching roads is horrible to say the least. ONE CANNOT IMAGINE HOW MUCH SUFFERING A HORSE ENDURES PULLING OVER WEIGHT TOURISTS AROUND TOWN UNDER SUCH CONDITIONS!!! These ladies, Kim Aranha and Hanna, should be cited for animal cruelty as a result of their failure to understand that the day of horse-pulled carriages in our country came with dirt roads and went out when they were paved with asphalt and packed with motor driven vehicles.....it's as simple as that. This mode of transportation adds nothing to our tourist economy as most tourists are horrified on seeing the suffering horses.

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TalRussell 5 years, 7 months ago

Minister what in the hell can increased fares charged to tourists possibly have do with cleaning up the abuse/neglect of buggy horses? What possible excuse could there be for not approving, since way back in the 1960's, an increase in the fares tourist pay to ride the carriages? Minister it ain't like Bahamalander's are using the buggies as their preferred daily transport over jitneys? What's next, the government hanging buggy fare meters around the horse's bridle. Minister how in the hell could something so simple to solve have become so damn complicated? How difficult can it be for a government to solve an abuse/neglect problem, when there is but a fleet of only 5 or 6 buggy drivers. When the minister responsible for buggies doesn't even know, if the number is 5 or 6 licensed buggy drivers , no damn wonder there are problems.

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by TalRussell

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hurricane 5 years, 7 months ago

a post with no mention of "comrade". wow!!!!!!

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akbar 5 years, 7 months ago

Typical, reward offenders for bad behavior. Good job Minister keep up the bad work!

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B_I_D___ 5 years, 7 months ago

Would you expect any other type of garbage to come out of GHM's mouth? She is about the most close minded and backwards thinking individual out there.

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TalRussell 5 years, 7 months ago

Comrades I have no personal bones to pick with Minister Glenys abilities but over a system of government held by the two major political parties which is broken and in serious need of drastic changes. Successive governments have complicated the most simple of issues and policies. I believe we can all agree that the abuse/mistreatment of buggy horses has been with us almost from the Sir Stafford UBP days. Why doesn't the minister say to herself' what in the hell does Road Traffic have to do with the care of horses? Hand-off solving this buggy issue to the Human society and only then can expect to see noticeable changes. Maybe the government can foot the bill to purchase new carriages and import fresh, health horses for the struggling buggy owners. Let's not do with with the tourist attraction of a properly run and supervised carriage industry. I can envision come 2014 there being some 20 new carriages in the soon to be open Baha Mar tourist area? Why are there no buggies on Paradise Island or Freeport? Minister within the next 24 hours announce a new and increased buggy fare.

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UserOne 5 years, 7 months ago

Retire the horses and let the surrey drivers and the minister pull the carriages. See how long they last.

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SP 5 years, 7 months ago

Transport Minister Glenys Hanna-Martin is on the right path.

I cannot begin to understand why and how former administrations dating back to the 60's justified denying fare increases to the surrey industry and expected the trade to sustain, grow and improve itself.

Say what you like about Bahamians, but this is another circumstance where Bahamians have endured under unfair and ridicules restraints by the powers that be for no valid reason.

How in God’s name did Road Traffic guided by Parliamentarians’ of yesteryear expect these people to maintain horses and improve coaches through the 60’s, 70's, 80's, 90's and 00's on fares relative with the 60's?

Asinine at best.

The potential for exponential improvement and growth exist in the surrey industry which has been stuck in a 60's time warp for decades by ignorance and stupidity.

The surrey industry co-exists and even flourishes in other tourist destinations (yes they have cars too!) there is no reason why the same cannot happen here.

This initiative is 40 years past due and headed in the right direction to increase tourist spend by improving our resort destination product, variety and services.

http://buggy.com/surry5.html">http://buggy.com/surry5.html proves that a lot can be achieved with better surrys, extended routes, more variety of surrey services and most of all additional job opportunities for forward thinking Bahamian entrepreneurs.

Continue to move forward Minister Glenys Hanna-Martin.

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4renbahamian 5 years, 7 months ago

There must be an area in politicians head (not brains) that wakes up during full moons for stupid ideas. Would this be economically positive for the nation? We dont have space for cars now you want to put horses in the mix. The industry is dead let it stay that way, its 2013 think that way. Now you want to add animal cruelty to the same pot with the detention centre. Everytime you see a politician on TV they are talking sht. We need forward thinkjng people.

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TalRussell 5 years, 7 months ago

Comrade SP "all" members of the House from both political parties while they debate an increase in tourist carriage ride fares for starving owners, should invite the buggies owners to the House of Assembly to see for themselves the Feast of Eats n' Things these same stingy MP's have catered to the House, whenever they're in session. Who pays for this catered buffet? The damn out of paychecks Bahamalanders, that's who footing the bill. Cry shame, shame on you MP's, no matter whats da color of ya damn shirts is. PM slove this rate and abuse issue within the next 24 hours and while you're at it, stop the damn "free lunch" program for MP's. Maybe a few stuff ya faces photos can nudge you to stop MP's free lunches. Faces and all included. Some them MP does loads their plates likes it's their last supper!

http://tribune242.com/users/photos/20...">http://thetribune.media.clients.ellin..." alt="None">

by TalRussell

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concernedcitizen 5 years, 7 months ago

if anyone believes the buggy drivers were still charging what they charged in the 60,s they need their head examined ,,they were charging whatever they could get ,you think any police was checkin or going to write them up for charging tourist more ,,

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digimagination 5 years, 7 months ago

Oh dear! There must be a full moon... tends to bring out all the nitwits!

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ETJ 5 years, 7 months ago

Does anybody really think that government approved rate increases will result in better care for the horses? The operators will rejoice at the increase and continue to "care" for the poor horses as they have always done - abysmally. There are never any sanctions or consequences so why should they do better? They do not love their horses they only use them, until they literally drop dead on the street.

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banker 5 years, 7 months ago

Cosign. However the problem is that if the surrey rides are $100, some of the 14,000 tourist per day from the cruise ships will think that it is worth it because they are partaking of "Bahamian culture".

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SP 5 years, 7 months ago

If nothing were done the same group of idiots would still be complaining. You people NEVER offer a positive contribution towards solving national problems.

It's no wonder the FNM failed and were soundly booted out of office.

Your party lost the election boys, get over it, move on, we still have a country to build even after 15 years of FNM stupidity.

You should be ashamed of yourselves for wishing harm on our less fortunate countrymen who are simply trying to make an honest living.

Perhaps you guys would prefer the alternative and have them swap their surrys for AK-47's and pay your family a visit!

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UserOne 5 years, 7 months ago

You should be ashamed, SP, for suggesting that unemployment justifies violence.

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concernedcitizen 5 years, 7 months ago

@sp . I can literally see you finger wagging ,chicken necking ,mouth as big as a five gallon bucket like a Jerry Springer guest to make a point ..

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TalRussell 5 years, 7 months ago

Comrades some of you gone strike the nail precisely on the head over what I been trying figure out, ever since the red shirts got's fired from their House seats during the 2112 General Elections. I been reading what you say's, that the alternative to driving them horses buggies would be to go use their brain and learn a skill to get "honest" jobs. Right on, cause now I learned why so many them former red shirts cabinet ministers and House MP's, cant find work. They needs start using their brains to learn something worthwhile, to write down on their job resumes. Now, I know's.

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