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News from USVI:




US Virgin Islands

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Former executive director of USVI legislature sentenced to five years in prison for bribery and extortion

May 16, 2015
Former executive director of USVI legislature sentenced to five years in prison for bribery and extortion ST THOMAS, USVI -- The former executive director of the US Virgin Islands Legislature was sentenced to five years in prison on Thursday. Louis “Lolo” Willis, 57, a resident of St Thomas, was sentenced by US District Court Judge Curtis Gomez of the District of the Virgin Islands. On November 19, 2014...

Employment and third quarter 2014 wages decline in San Juan, Puerto Rico's only large county

May 2, 2015
Employment and third quarter 2014 wages decline in San Juan, Puerto Rico's only large county SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico -- Puerto Rico’s only large county, the municipio of San Juan, reported an employment decline of 1.8 percent from September 2013 to September 2014, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Thursday. (Large counties are defined as those with employment of 75,000...

Renewed law enforcement partnerships are a win for USVI, says senator

April 30, 2015
Renewed law enforcement partnerships are a win for USVI, says senator ST THOMAS, USVI -- US Virgin Islands Senator Novelle Francis on Wednesday commented on what he called “a fresh start” in the relationship between federal and local law enforcement agencies. A career law enforcement professional and former police commissioner, he presently serves as...

US Virgin Islands workers earn 26 percent below US average

April 30, 2015
US Virgin Islands workers earn 26 percent below US average NEW YORK, USA -- Workers in the US Virgin Islands earned an average (mean) hourly wage of $16.81 in May 2014, about 26 percent below the nationwide average of $22.71, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Wednesday. Chief regional economist Martin Kohli noted that 20 out of 22...

USVI senator calls on former governor to reimburse balance of security costs at private residence

April 29, 2015
USVI senator calls on former governor to reimburse balance of security costs at private residence ST CROIX, USVI -- Senator Kenneth Gittens, chairman of the Committee on Rules and Judiciary, has thanked former US Virgin Islands Governor John de Jongh for paying back a portion of the monies used to enhance his private residence. A resolution to have de Jongh repay monies used for...

Former USVI governor reimburses government for security at personal residence

April 27, 2015
Former USVI governor reimburses government for security at personal residence ST THOMAS, USVI -- A little over four months after completing his second term in office, former Governor John de Jongh has announced that he had paid to the government of the US Virgin Islands the sum of $202,831.60 for the security measures that remain at his home after serving as the seventh elected...

USVI senator urges police to move quickly to implement crime prevention strategies

April 15, 2015
USVI senator urges police to move quickly to implement crime prevention strategies ST THOMAS, USVI -- Senator Novelle Francis has called on the US Virgin Islands Police Department to move quickly as it implements crime prevention strategies needed to curb the occurrence of violent crime across the territory. He is the chair of the USVI Legislature’s Committee on Homeland Security...

US Coast Guard stations new vessels in USVI

April 14, 2015
US Coast Guard stations new vessels in USVI ST THOMAS, USVI -- At a news conference on Friday, the United States Coast Guard announced the assignment of four special purpose craft law enforcement boats to the US Virgin Islands. Two of the 33-foot high speed vessels will be stationed on St Thomas, and two will be stationed on St Croix.

Former USVI senator in Europe to expand upcoming book

April 14, 2015
Former USVI senator in Europe to expand upcoming book SIENA, Italy -- Former US Virgin Islands senator Wayne James is in Europe expanding his anticipated, cutting-edge book on men's manners, Manly Manners: Lifestyle & Modern Etiquette for the Young Man of the 21st Century, from the originally planned 800 pages to 950 pages.

BVI Spring Regatta and St Thomas International Regatta to host VX One Caribbean Cup in 2016

April 14, 2015
BVI Spring Regatta and St Thomas International Regatta to host VX One Caribbean Cup in 2016 TORTOLA, BVI -- In a joint statement, the St Thomas International Regatta and BVI Spring Regatta and Sailing Festival announced their partnership with VX One to host the first VX One Caribbean Cup in 2016. Already plans are underway for 2016 just as the events wrap a successful 2015.

Energy leaders, partners gather in USVI for Caribbean clean energy technology symposium

April 6, 2015
Energy leaders, partners gather in USVI for Caribbean clean energy technology symposium CHARLOTTE AMALIE, USVI -- Some 270 attendees at the first Caribbean Clean Energy Technology Symposium (CCETS) gathered from March 24-27, 2015, on St Thomas in the US Virgin Islands to learn and share knowledge about clean energy efficiency and security for the Caribbean.

Fuel company to spend $1.6 million on leak detection in gas stations across Puerto Rico and USVI

March 12, 2015
Fuel company to spend $1.6 million on leak detection in gas stations across Puerto Rico and USVI SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico -- A settlement announced on Monday between the US and Total Petroleum Puerto Rico Corp. (Total Puerto Rico) resolves Resource Conservation Recovery Act (RCRA) violations alleged at 31 gas stations in Puerto Rico and four gas stations in the US Virgin Islands.

Plans for new cruise ship pier in USVI suspended

March 12, 2015
Plans for new cruise ship pier in USVI suspended ST THOMAS, USVI -- Citing a potential negative impact on the quality of life of US Virgin Islanders, the board of the West Indian Company Ltd (WICO) has suspended its plans for a new cruise ship pier in downtown St Thomas. Chairman of the WICO board, Randolph Knight, reported that...

USVI governor leads successful tourism mission to New York

March 10, 2015
USVI governor leads successful tourism mission to New York NEW YORK, USVI -- Governor Kenneth E. Mapp and the US Virgin Islands Department of Tourism have concluded a strategic mission to New York to boost interest in the territory. Led by Mapp and Commissioner of Tourism Beverly Nicholson-Doty, meeting planners and buyers...

Private lender suspends lending in the USVI

February 24, 2015
Private lender suspends lending in the USVI ENGLEWOOD CLIFFS, USA -- Kennedy Funding Financial, one of the world's largest private lenders, has suspended all lending in the US Virgin Islands, encompassing St Croix and St Thomas, citing bureaucratic problems in the territory's foreclosure process. "Due to the incredible delays...

Bank leak reveals billions from Caribbean stashed in Switzerland

February 12, 2015
Bank leak reveals billions from Caribbean stashed in Switzerland WASHINGTON, USA -- The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists released a report this week revealing billions of dollars held in nearly 60,000 internal Swiss bank documents from 2006 to 2007 leaked by whistleblower Hervé Falciani, a former employee of HSBC in Switzerland.

USVI governor sends proposed legislation for $1 million for litigation against oil companies

February 6, 2015
USVI governor sends proposed legislation for $1 million for litigation against oil companies ST THOMAS, USVI -- On Wednesday afternoon, US Virgin Islands Governor Kenneth Mapp sent proposed legislation to President Neville James of the 31st Legislature. The legislation is to authorize and appropriate the sum of $1 million to retain counsel to pursue litigation against Hess Oil and...

USVI launches juvenile curfew violation initiative

February 5, 2015
USVI launches juvenile curfew violation initiative ST CROIX, USVI -- The US Virgin Islands Police Department has implemented a juvenile curfew violation initiative, which began on January 30, 2015. This initiative will be conducted in all areas of St Croix where there are large congregations of unsupervised juveniles. The objective of this initiative...

USVI government seeks to foreclose on St Croix refinery

February 3, 2015
USVI government seeks to foreclose on St Croix refinery ST CROIX, USVI -- In the latest twist in the ongoing saga of the mothballed HOVENSA oil refinery on St Croix, the US Virgin Islands government last week filed a six-page action in the local Superior Court to begin the process of foreclosure on the property following HOVENSA’s failure to pay $40 million...

Submissions call for The Caribbean Writer - Volume 30

January 30, 2015
Submissions call for The Caribbean Writer - Volume 30 ST CROIX, USVI -- The Caribbean Writer – where the Caribbean Imagination Embraces the World – has announced a submission call for its 30th Anniversary edition. The Caribbean Writer is an international, refereed, literary journal published annually by the University of the Virgin Islands.

USVI to generate power from grass

January 21, 2015
USVI to generate power from grass ST CROIX, USVI -- A new 7-megawatt anaerobic digestion biogas power plant will provide renewable electricity in the USVI. The majority feedstock is giant king grass developed by Viaspace Inc for Tibbar Energy USVI, which will sell power for 25 years with an additional five-year option to USVI Water...

USVI resolves dispute with US Customs and Border Protection over costs and revenue

January 5, 2015
USVI resolves dispute with US Customs and Border Protection over costs and revenue ST THOMAS, USVI -- Governor John de Jongh said on Saturday that the government of the US Virgin Islands and the US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) have executed a new memorandum of agreement to resolve a long-standing dispute over the responsibility for financing the costs of CBP’s activities.

USVI governor-elect introduces 13 new cabinet members

December 31, 2014
USVI governor-elect introduces 13 new cabinet members ST CROIX, USVI -- In a press conference on Tuesday morning, US Virgin Islands Governor-Elect Kenneth Mapp introduced 13 Cabinet members who will be part of his new administration when he is sworn into office on January 5, 2015. The new Cabinet members are:

'Surf's up' at USVI airport

December 23, 2014
'Surf's up' at USVI airport ST THOMAS, USVI -- The Cyril E. King Airport in St Thomas, US Virgin Islands, is now offering free high speed Wi-Fi to departing passengers. The USVI Department of Tourism confirmed that passengers waiting for flights at the airport are now able to log onto their respective devices, free of charge.

USVI senate rejects refinery sale agreement

December 22, 2014
USVI senate rejects refinery sale agreement ST THOMAS, USVI -- The US Virgin Islands senate on Friday rejected a proposal to sell the former HOVENSA oil refinery in St Croix in a deal that, according to a statement issued by a number of senators, they believed would not have benefited the territorial government financially.

Improved US-Cuba relations have positive implications and challenges, says USVI tourism chief

December 22, 2014
Improved US-Cuba relations have positive implications and challenges, says USVI tourism chief ST THOMAS, USVI -- US President Barack Obama's announcement of plans to normalize relations with Cuba has a number of positive implications but this change in relationship between the US and Cuba will also come with some challenges, said US Virgin Islands Commissioner of Tourism...

Ten Caribbean destinations reaped $867 million from private jet vacationers in winter season

December 19, 2014
Ten Caribbean destinations reaped $867 million from private jet vacationers in winter season NEW YORK, USA -- Elite Traveler Magazine has just reported the top ten destinations to enjoy the benefits of private jet charter flights during last year's peak winter season, which resulted in revenues of $867 million from 12,566 flights. Nassau in The Bahamas, St Maarten and Turks and Caicos...

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