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Ground was officially broken yesterday for the construction of a new building for the Westmoreland Parish Council.

At a special ceremony held in the parish capital, Savanna-La-Mar, members of the Council’s administrative staff and Councillors, the three Members of Parliament for Westmoreland and other specially invited guests welcomed the start of the construction project, which should be completed in May, 2016.

MP for Western Westmoreland, Tourism and Entertainment Minister Dr. Wykeham McNeil, MP for Eastern Westmoreland and State Minister for Agriculture & Fisheries Luther Buchanan and MP for Central Westmoreland Dwayne Vaz, all endorsed the project, describing it as critical to the service of the people of the parish.

In his remarks, portfolio Minister Noel Arscott reminded Councillors that while the new building will be a modern comfortable location from which to operate, it was a place from which improved public service is expected. “It is a springboard for greater service to your constituents. It will be the place where you collaborate and devise innovative ways to improve people’s lives. It is the place from which you will implement your plans to make Westmoreland the parish of choice, in a Jamaica where people will want to live, work, raise families and do business… I feel confident that when the last block is laid, the last coat of paint is applied and the fixtures are installed, the public can taste and see that the J$74.8 million dollars spent, was good value for money.”

The contract for the construction of the building was signed on July 13. When completed, it will be a modern, two-storey facility, which will feature contemporary roofing, modern sanitary conveniences, high ceilings and large windows to facilitate natural lighting and ventilation. In addition, there will be LED lighting systems, and solar panels will ensure energy efficiency.

The contractor responsible for this project is N.R. Diaram Construction Limited.