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HomeNewsLocal newsDPNR Wants To Hear From You At Land And Water Use Meeting

DPNR Wants To Hear From You At Land And Water Use Meeting

Virgin Islanders can share their hopes for a comprehensive land and water use plan at three in-person events this week and a virtual open house until Aug. 6. (Photo by Mat Probasco)

If you know one thing about the U.S. Virgin Islands’ comprehensive plan for land and water use, it’s likely that there isn’t one.

Decades of disagreement and inertia have long stalled territory-wide guidelines on how land and water ought to be protected and developed.

In a series of forums this week, the Department of Planning and Natural Resources wants to share where the plan is headed and get Virgin Islanders’ input on where they want it to go.

Far from the parliamentary-procedure formality of a Senate hearing, these talk-back events are critical to making sure everyone’s voice is represented, said DPNR Commissioner Jean-Pierre Oriol in a written statement.

“We are at a critical point in the project. Feedback from the community is important. The upcoming Town Halls provide the community a space to let us know if we are on the right track and where we might need to adjust,” Oriol said.

The first meeting is Tuesday afternoon at the Charlotte Amalie High School auditorium on St. Thomas. Beginning with an open house at 4:30 p.m., the event will morph to a town hall meeting at 5:30 p.m. and end at 7:30 p.m. Questions and concerns are encouraged, Oriol said.

The second meeting is planned for Wednesday during the same hours, 4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., at the Julius E. Sprauve School cafeteria.

On Thursday at the same hours, DPNR will meet with St. Croix residents at the University of the Virgin Islands Great Hall Room.

The Department also plans a virtual open house from Monday to Aug. 6 to collect feedback.

Without a comprehensive plan, haphazard zoning and myopic development strategies threaten to destroy green space and established neighborhoods, advocates have said.

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