Kite flyers can be fined under amendment

Dealing with Barbadians who become a “nuisance” by leaving noisy kites flying all night is just the start, Attorney General Dale Marshall warned Tuesday.

He also served notice that Government was “concluding the work on the legislation which is intended to compel individuals to clean up their properties”, and also intended to ultimately tackle noise pollution in a comprehensive way.

Marshall was speaking as the House of Assembly debated and approved an amendment to the Minor Offences Act.

Through the legislative change, individuals can be fined $500 for flying a kite “with any object which creates noise”, commonly known as a bull, between 7 p.m. and 6 a.m.

The St Joseph representative said that “everybody wants us to deal with this, they want us to deal with the motor bikes, they want us to deal with all kinds of things, and we’re going to get to them as soon as we can”.

“But I want to say that in the context of things that you may consider minor, I want to serve notice that we are concluding the work on the legislation which is intended to compel individuals to clean up the properties,” he told the Lower House.

“I’m just trying to reference to it now because…the effect and the impact of you not keeping your property clean, has the capacity of creating health hazards for other individuals, not just the unsightly nature of your place.”

“Cleaning up your property…honouring the obligation to yourself and to your neighbours, that is going to come too and over time we are going to cover as many of these minor things as possible,” he said, noting that such measures were intended “to gradually improve the sense of responsibility and discipline among Barbadians”.

Marshall said he had received calls with people saying, “‘AG the motorbikes…keep nuff noise in we head, AG the car horns, AG this, AG that’”.

“Sometimes you are worried that you have opened a little Pandora’s box. But we can’t be afraid to open the Pandora’s box, we have to tackle these issues as they arise when they arise, and try to do good for the broadest sector of Barbados,” he asserted.

Marshall said that while there were some individuals who did not see the action against noisy kites as a big deal, “it is an absolute fact that there are individuals who are forced to suffer under the burden of the loudest of noises straight through the night”.

“In a way that it affects their ability to sleep, it affects their ability to function in normal ways, it affects their health,” he lamented.

“This Barbados Labour Party administration has no interest in stopping people from flying kites.

This administration…has absolutely no interest in rooting out a wonderful part of Barbados’ culture and heritage, but what we do have an interest in is making sure that our society operates in a way that has a balance.”

“So yes, people have a right to enjoy their heritage and to build on that heritage, but it has to be done in such a way that is still respects the rights of individuals,” he said, noting that people could leave kites flying at night once the noise making device was removed.

“I don’t want anybody to get charged under this bill, I don’t want anybody to get a ticket under this bill…but there is a responsibility on each of us to be our brother’s keeper and that includes doing the decent thing and eliminating the noise making apparatus”. (SC)


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