The government on Wednesday afternoon announced millions of dollars in funding to parish councillors to assist with various services and first response in cases of disaster.
Local Government Minister Desmond McKenzie made the announcement of this and other allocations to councillors, during his presentation in the sectoral debate in the House of Representatives on Wednesday.
The minister announced that $400 million will be made available to elected councillors for indigent and social housing assistance, education and funeral grants. He said $115 million will be devoted to a special fund to assist councillors in each division to "respond decisively to victims of fires and other disasters."
The minister also announced an allocation to establish an office for each council division. He said each councillor as well as the Mayor of Portmore will receive a tablet to aid in executing their responsibilities.
Meanwhile, the Municipality of Portmore in St. Catherine is to get a new council building.
Mr. McKenzie said work on the building will begin shortly and will be at a cost of $90 million.
Work is also being done on the Westmoreland Municipal Corporation at a cost of $75 million. The minister said this project should be completed within six to eight weeks.
In addition, retrofitting work has been done on the buildings housing the municipal corporations in St. Mary and Trelawny.