PHILIPSBURG, St. Maarten - Minister of Tourism and Economic Affairs Mellissa Arrindell-Doncher dedicated multiple days last week to signing business licenses and clearing up and significant part of the backlog that has built up over the past few months.
The Minister, her cabinet and Department Head of Economic Licenses Valya Lake-Pantophlet, drastically cut down a backlog that was built from late last year to present. The Minister explained that due to the election period, formation of government and the delay in identifying a Minister of Tourism and Economic Affairs, the signing of business licenses slowed down.
“It was nothing intentional, but the workload of one Minister carrying multiple Ministries in the absence of another Minister, contributed to the backlog although we did what we could in the interim to get some signed off. Now however, I thought it was vital that we took a few days and focus solely and getting these businesses going so they can contribute to our economy,” the Minister said.
The Minister if off-island this week on personal matters and will clear the remaining backlog upon her return. She explained that what remains is a very small amount compared to what was. The Minister complimented Lake-Pantophlet and the entire team of her department who had to take on the brunt of frustration form citizens waiting for their business license.
“And this is totally understandable. Rest assured we will get to all the business licenses in very quick time. We ask for your continued patience as we eliminate this backlog,” the Minister said.