Minister of Transport and Mining, Hon. Robert Montague, says he is working to have a domestic airline operating in Jamaica in short order.“Having a domestic airline is one of my objectives because I believe that ordinary Jamaicans should have an option of taking… air transport, so I have it as one of my priorities,” he said.Mr. Montague was speaking to JIS News at the final in a series of consultations for the crafting of a new National Transport Policy (NTP), held on Wednesday (March 13) at The Knutsford Court Hotel in St. Andrew.He indicated that discussions are under way with three investment groups to start a domestic service.“The market can take up to two, and possibly three. I am leading the effort to have a domestic carrier up and running,” he said.The series of consultations, held with key stakeholders, will guide the revision of the transport policy, covering air, water, road, railway, and infrastructure and services.It identifies the issues faced in the development of the sector; the roles of Government, the private sector and the numerous authorities operating in the sector; the changes necessary in the regulatory structure; and environment and safety issues.
One of the ways the military services are improving their installations’ energy resilience is by leveraging private sector investment through energy savings performance contracts (ESPCs) and utility energy service contracts (UESCs). In its report accompanying the fiscal 2019 defense authorization bill, the Senate Armed Services Committee says it supports the approach and “strongly encourages” DOD to leverage its facilities sustainment, restoration and modernization accounts, in combination with third-party funding sources, “to maximize energy infrastructure investments.” That tactic could help the department reduce its massive infrastructure maintenance backlog as well as enhance installation resilience, the panel states.The panel remains concerned, however, that DOD has failed to streamline the procurement processes used to enter ESPCs, UESCs and power purchase agreements. In turn, the committee directs the Pentagon to set “a department performance contracting goal along with a tracking system to identify and address project phase bottlenecks, with a timeline goal of 18 months from notice of opportunity to notice of intent to award.” The lawmakers also request DOD to brief the committee on its progress by March 1, 2019.Photo courtesy of Army Corps of Engineers Huntsville Center Dan Cohen AUTHOR