Environment

BEST reports difficulty with ATV submissions

  • The Railway Trail (File photograph)

The Bermuda Environmental Sustainability Task Force has reported difficulties for persons commenting on the proposed use of quad bikes on West End park land.

The concept, which has been branded “troublesome” by BEST, has been opened to the public for consultation, with the deadline set for Tuesday.

Tours would be allowed onto the Railway Trail and some of the protected areas of the West End, using all-terrain vehicles or ATVs, if the proposal goes ahead.

However, a statement from BEST said that complaints had been received that submissions to the Government’s site were being bounced back.

The technical issue was reported on Thursday — but the group expressed concern that the problem could lead to a distorted consultation tally.

While a test e-mail from The Royal Gazette appeared successful, BEST has recommended that concerned members of the public also send a copy of their comments to office@best.org.bm “as a kind of insurance policy that their comments won’t just disappear”.

The statement added: “While we support public consultation on issues that will have a collective impact, we feel it must be said it’s better to have a consultation before decisions are made rather than being tempted to use consultation to shore up an already-made decision.”

The Department of Parks opened the proposal to public consultation two weeks ago.

While the ATV idea was given tentative approval by the previous minister, it has come under fire from residents, farmers and environmental groups.

According to the advisory sent out on October 31, comments can be submitted via the Government portal at:

https://www.gov.bm/proposed-change-use-scaur-hill-fort-park-and-hog-bay-park

https://www.gov.bm/sites/default/files/8500_Proposed-Change-of-Use.pdf

Submissions can also be sent in to the Parks Department, via e-mail at parkspublicconsultation@gov.bm before 4pm on Tuesday.

Postal submissions may be mailed in to the Department of Parks, PO Box HM20, Hamilton, HMAX.

Submission can also be provided in person at the Parks office on the ground floor of Global House, Church Street, Hamilton.