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First the weather:
78 degrees in Crown Bay St. Thomas
81% humidity.
29.92 - - 30.05 - - Barometric Pressure – rising
Wind from East at 7 mph – Under Clear skies.
No rain - - Point 01 inches of rain - - in the last 24 hours.

National Weather Service says: Clear with rain showers. High of 81F. Breezy. Winds from the East at 15 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 20%.
Patches of low level moisture will continue to move across the Virgin Islands producing cloudiness and isolated showers. Across the regional waters, seas will remain at five feet for the next couple of days and winds will reach 18 knots (20 miles per hour).


Cruise Ship News
Eclipse and the Norwegian Epic   at Havensight Dock
Eurodam and Allure of the Seas  here in Crown Bay at the Monsanto Terminal :

At the top of the news on  Wednesday March 20

Is it a pig in a poke or a fantastic bargain? Senator Shawn Michael Malone found a town in Alaska that is giving away a 78 million dollar ferry boat.  Suitable for the run between St. Thomas and St Croix.  A Car ferry.  Seaworthy. The vessel in Alaska was originally designed as a prototype military landing craft as a demonstration project for the U.S. Navy. Imagine two long pontoons with a barge in between, 200 feet long 60 feet wide. It can move 20 cars and a tractor trailer too. And it is almost new. Why does Alaska want to get rid of it – they aren’t using it.  And it costs $88,000 a month to maintain. They got the ferry from the Dept of Defense who had it custom made. Malone wrote to get the US Virgin Islands in line to get the boat. There are rules for the give away – and because it would go to a US Jurisdiction, government entity, we are ahead of  lot of candidates for the ferry. We have an established federal water route – that helps. If we have the best argument; we get the ferry. Free!

Public Works Commissioner Darryl Smalls said rehabilitation work on the Pine Peace Basketball Court on St. John has begun.  Stone Masonry will be paid around $360,000 to elevate the entire property and installing a subsurface drainage system, reconstruct and resurfacing of the basketball court, installation of new backboards and bleachers, and build a restroom. ”The Pine Peace basketball court will be closed while work is ongoing. 

Smalls also talked about work historic Rothschild Francis “Market” Square and lower Kronprindsens Gade and pointed out that work will be organized so there is no interruption of the 61st Virgin Islands Carnival. An investigation of a major historical archeological site along the roadway west of Market Square will be delayed until Carnival is over.  Dept. Public Works will mothball the site and cover it so it can be reopened after Carnival events are over. Carnival will proceed as normal. Meanwhile Smalls has a pile of federal paperwork to get the funds to perform a full research study of the area.

Good News St Croix – you have a new waste management facility in Peter rest.  The new convenience center north of the bin site in Peter's Rest – with bins and compactors for household waste. There is a separate facility for recyclables. The site will have hours of operation, not the open around the clock. It's new it's clean it's well organized. There is a Town Hall meeting on Thursday at 6 PM at Gertrude's restaurant on Hess road. 6 PM Thursday.

Hearty Congratulations to  Jo-sae Martin, a senior at Charlotte Amalie High school, was declared the 2013 Poetry Out Loud State Champion. She will advance to the National Finals which will take place April 29th thru May 3rd,  in Washington, DC.  Second place to Junia Washington from Montessori school and Lawrence Thomas-Lewis from St. Croix Seventh Day Adventist School was third. The State Champion and second place winner's school will receive funds for the purchase of Poetry Books


First Lady Cecile de Jongh is among a number of women honored by the Virgin Islands Lottery on a series of commemorative lottery tickets on the “Women Making a Difference” series for the March 26 drawing.   First Lady de Jongh congratulated the other women honored including: Dee Baecher-Brown, Cheryl Boynes-Jackson, Dilsa Capdeville, Donna Christensen, Divya Daswani, Dorothy Elskoe, Patrice Harley, Laverne Jones-Ferrette, Corinne Lockhart, Arlene Monaghan, Shaun Pennington, Eileen Petersen,  Trudie J. Prior, LaVerne Ragster, Maria Rodriguez, Thelma R. Watson, Lorna Webster, and Jacqueline T. Wynter.

UVI president Dr. David Hall is in Antigua He is inviting all alumni of the University of the Virgin Islands who live in Antigua and Barbuda to join him for an alumni Meet and Greet at 6:30pm this evening at the Anchorage Inn Restaurant.

The Governor and the Next Generation Network extend a personal invitation to all employees of businesses, to participate in “Digital Literacy Training.”  This invitation goes out to all private sector employees to participate in a territory-wide effort to get everyone “Digital Literacy Training” and certification. It is easy to do! I did it. You can too. You go through a series of lessons, and quizes, which tell your level of digital literacy. Then they teach you what you didn’t know. All for free. NGN extend this great opportunity to employees of the Private Sector Business. Call Kevin Hughes 715-8581.

The Government Employees’ Retirement System launched their new member self-service – It is a software application on a safe and secured web page and provides member access to their data on file with the GERS, Members are invited to come visit GERS offices as follows: 
March 20 - April 19 in the St. Thomas and St. Croix offices
Monday through Friday:  9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
St John dates are March 27, April 3, 10 and 17. at the battery Wednesdays only  9 am – 1:30 pm
For more information call 340-776-7703 or 340-718-5480.

Department of Labor is accepting and processing applications for the Summer Youth Employment for some four-hundred and fifty slots.   Applications are on the Department of Labor web site at www.vidol.gov. If you are an 11th or 12th grader with no previous work experience or you are Out-of-School/Unemployed & Dislocated Youth.     Call Department of Labor.

The Monthly Support Group of the Charlotte Kimelman Cancer Institute meets on Wednesday, March 20th  at Noon in the First Floor Conference Room at Charlotte Kimelman Cancer Institute. We warmly welcome all cancer patients, care-givers and cancer survivors to come and share in this encouraging, uplifting time of fellowship. Wednesday at Noon at Charlotte Kimelman Cancer Institute !

We pause to honor the memory of John David Merwin who passed away at the Age of 91.  He was second to last of the appointed governors and was the first native born Virgin Islander to hold the post.  He was elected senator at large to the very first legislature in 1954. Same year the Organic Act was approved. And elected to the second legislature. He was government secretary until he resigned to be appointed governor. He was not only the first locally born gov, but the first who was not a military man. What was life like when John Merwin was Governor?  The Virgin Islands population was 30,000 people. The government budget was 3 million dollars.  Merwin is responsible for dredging St. Thomas harbor, building schools and building the first airplane landing strip on St Croix.  Born on St Croix in 1921, died in Ohio at age 91. Flags at half staff until the date of his burial.

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