Vehicle scales for hinterland roads imminent

first_imgIn an effort to curb the issue of drivers not adhering to weight limits on hinterland roads, the Public Infrastructure Ministry will soon be installing vehicle scales along roadways in interior locations.Public Infrastructure Minister David PattersonPublic Infrastructure Minister David Patterson told the Department of Public Information (DPI) that he foresaw the installation of these scales soon.“I do foresee us addressing this issue in the near future. My ministry has some modern scales, which I will like to put in place. But the challenge with that is that it’s the interior, so I have to situate them near police stations. It will not be ideal to have technicians or persons stopping truck drivers who may not wish to stop, so it has to be by a police station,” he said.The Minister further explained that this move would eventually see new Police Outposts established along hinterland roads. “Where the current Police Stations are located, they are not geared for stopping traffic on the road, they are placed for policing work in your communities.”Minister Patterson disclosed that the relevant authorities have already been engaged, and appealed to drivers to be extremely careful on hinterland roads.Drivers are urged to adhere to rules and avoid travelling while overladen. Residents are also being called on to be vigilant and report overweight vehicles.A sum of $1.5 billion was allocated in the 2018 Budget for road rehabilitation as well as the completion of all rollover projects.Earlier this year, the Ministry had announced that it was taking a firm stance against mining and mining-related operators who cause significant deterioration to roads in the hinterland regions.This was announced after concerns were raised over the misuse of hinterland roads, which is in contravention of the Road Users’ Agreement.According to the Public Infrastructure Ministry, significant sums were expended in the hinterland regions last year for the rehabilitation of roadways. In fact, some $54.5 million was spent in 2016 to repair the Puruni-Itaballi corridor. This corridor is still under maintenance. Furthermore, in 2017, $100 million was allocated to improve the Puruni-Pappishou corridor.While the agreement notes that the Government of Guyana will use its best efforts to keep the road maintained in good condition at all times, road users must play their part by adhering to stipulations such as the prohibition of vehicles weighing more than 60 tons crossing Itaballi-Puruni bridges. Additionally, the agreement notes that users shall be liable to Government for any damage to Government’s property caused by the negligent use of the roadways by their employees and/or their agents.last_img read more

Committee OKs gay marriage bill

first_imgThe Republican governor told a group of high school students in February that he would turn down the bill again if it reached his desk this year. But Leno said lawmakers should keep trying. “The time has come for California to honor its commitment to equality for all Californians by allowing each of our citizens the right to marry the person he or she loves,” he said. He said failure to allow same-sex marriages would deny a long list of benefits to gays, including pension, health care and veterans’ benefits available to married couples. The bill’s opponents, agreeing with Schwarzenegger, said the state Constitution prevents the Legislature from authorizing gay marriages unless voters first overturn Proposition 22. “The Constitution says clearly that this Legislature cannot trump the vote of the people of California,” said Randy Thomasson, president of the Campaign for Children and Families. “The vote of the people of California seven years ago was to say only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California.” SACRAMENTO – A state Assembly committee voted for a bill that would allow gay couples to marry, despite a veto threat and a continuing debate over the legislation’s constitutionality. The Judiciary Committee approved Tuesday the bill by Assemblyman Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, sending it to the Appropriations Committee, the last stop before the Assembly floor. The 7-3 vote split along party lines, with Democrats backing the proposal and Republicans opposing it. Lawmakers approved a nearly identical measure in 2005, but it was vetoed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. The governor argued that it violated Proposition 22, an anti-gay marriage initiative adopted by California voters in 2000. But Leno said Proposition 22 was drafted to prevent California from having to recognize gay marriages performed in other states and countries. He said his bill would amend another section of law dealing with marriages performed in California. Proposition 22’s authors could have broadened the measure’s language to ensure that it also would ban same-sex marriages in California, but they failed to do so because of “sloppiness and error on their part,” Leno said. “Their intent was to deny same-sex couples respect and dignity under the law,” he said. “They did not do their job well. They created the ambiguity.” He said recent polls indicate that public support for gay marriage is increasing. But civil rights shouldn’t be decided by a public vote, he added. “That’s why we have three branches of government – to protect the minority from the tyranny of the majority,” he said. The debate over the bill’s constitutionality is likely to be decided late this year or early next year by the state Supreme Court, which is weighing whether California’s ban on same-sex marriage violates equal protection, privacy and free expression rights.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more