BVI News

Vanterpool explains hiring CSC and selecting cruise pier developer

Opposition legislator and former Works Minister, Mark Vanterpool.

While denying he commandeered the Cruise Pier Project, former Works Minister under the previous NDP government, Mark Vanterpool conceded that the procurement process to select a developer could have been different.

A Public Accounts Committee (PAC) report done in February 2014 stated that Vanterpool along with project consultant Claude Skelton Cline received three proposals to develop the cruise port. The report said this was done “through a process that lacked transparency and [one that] did not involve any form of public tender or open solicitation for this multi-million-dollar public project. These were assessed by the former consultant and forwarded to the minister for decision.”

Addressing the Commission of Inquiry (COI) where he appeared to give evidence on the project, Vanterpool said he did not recall any bids or invitations being done at the time. Instead, he insisted that the three bidders – CaribInvest, Trident Development Enterprise LLC, and Tortola Port Partners – were simply able to make presentations to the government because there was an understanding at the time that the BVI was seeking to develop its cruise tourism industry.

“The government made a policy that went forward to develop the cruise pier, and three persons made a presentation made to the government. Now, that may not have been the exact procurement process that should have been followed, but that is what happened,” Vanterpool further told the COI.

The Cruise Pier Project had a final reported cost of $82.9 million which represented more than $30 million above the initial estimate. Vanterpool later claimed that the estimate was incomplete.

Why Vanterpool hired port development novice, Skelton Cline

In explaining his decision to hire Skelton Cline as a consultant for the project, Vanterpool told the COI he simply needed a ‘focus’ person he could trust to execute the project in the way that he wanted.

He agreed that the former consultant was hired through a petty contract amounting to $96,000. Vanterpool said he did not have to take that to Cabinet to get a tender waiver, since the contract value was below $100,000.

The former Works Minister further said he hired Skelton Cline despite knowing he had no background or expertise in port development.

“I appointed a person to work closely with me as minister to be entirely focused on this development and advise me as minister as to the person that we were able to seek advice from – engineers, the cruise ship companies, the various persons. As Minister – and I felt responsible to make sure this was happening – I would not have the time to do it,” Vanterpool explained.

He denied that this was to the detriment of the BVI Ports Authority (BVIPA) who claimed he and Skelton Cline sidelined them. Vanterpool told the COI that as the minister responsible for the project, it was his prerogative to execute the policy of the government in the direction that he chose.

The former minister also denied that there was any impropriety in selecting Skelton Cline as a consultant, even though Skelton Cline had just run as a failed candidate on Vanterpool’s winning political party, the NDP.

He further suggested that he believed the execution of project benefited when Skelton Cline returned as his government’s appointee for Managing Director of the BVIPA.

COI tarnishing my reputation — Skelton Cline


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  1. $$$$ says:

    I am absolutely speechless! These ‘so called leaders’ operate much like con artists in the way that they abuse the loopholes in government’s operational policies to justify cronyism. Policies need to be put in place to close these loopholes and even to prosecute these guys for their questionable acts. Maybe, if they were legally acceptable for some of these poor choices, we would have better governance.

    Like 56
    • @$$$$ says:

      Very good comment you hit the nail on the head. They took advantage of the Loopholes in the Laws that they would not update and fix.

      So when times like these come around and they are call to answer for their actions they will present their case in a circumstantial way that they feel will make them untouchable. Its a shame.

      Like 20
    • Sooo says:

      So let’s all understand this. First, Disney was going to fund the pier expansion but Mark and his cronies decided that there was no money in that for them. Sooo, let’s expand the project and have our cronies form a partnership to do the development. Let’s not form a proper tendering process and get bids from REAL viable companies outside the BVI. Let’s keep it on island so we can keep our dirty c***ked fingers in it. Then we need to payoff and keep CSC quiet so we’ll give him the management job. He’s a clergyman with no experience other than c*****tion. Then to top it off there is no oversight of the “extra” $30 mil and what was it for. Perhaps the expansion of O**M*** or a new one in the east end. Anyone who thinks the COI is clearly not needed and the removal of all of these c***ksfrom the government is part of the corruption. What the COI really needs to look at is what these politicians built and bought during their time in government. Build the port but you need to build me a new store, a new house, a new office building, etc, etc. Hope you all get the picture. The wealth accumulated by these politicians while in government is extraordinary

      Like 41
      Dislike 2
  2. Jobs for boys says:

    Come on Mark, don’t insult us by thinking we can’t see through your actions. Most things in life are done for a reason and we know your reasons……..2 peas in a pod !
    Commissioner get a copy of the lead singer from Lashing Dogs last CD and all the answers are there to be heard.

    Like 43
  3. Yawn says:

    Based on what Mark said almost anybody could have gotten this job even one of his cashiers or shelf stockers but we all know better.

    Like 40
  4. ??? says:

    Those corrupt Ones think We the People ate stupidy. Killing Our Territory slowly but surely. GREED IS A MUST FOR THEM!

    Like 25
  5. Fools says:

    @ Yawn, so true. According to Vanterpool, CSC got the position as a consultant making $96,000 annually, but not having the “background or expertise in port development.”

    Like 22
  6. Bloomberg says:

    Ayo who here complaining why ayo don’t run? Stop complaining. The country is free for all who are qualify to run and then if you get in like my NDP team then ayo could make deals like Marky Mark.

    All ayo could do is complain complain complain and do nothing. Gheese

    The best that ever govern this territory is NDP, point blank.

    Like 2
    Dislike 29
  7. PLAYERS says:


    Like 15
  8. jimmy jowe says:

    We have had nothing but A**-Clowns running this Territory between VIP and NDP. Case and point

    Like 18
  9. thewatchman says:

    CSC going down.

    Coincidence so many “petty contracts” awarded for just under $100k?

    Like 13
    Dislike 1
  10. Irma Chisit says:

    What on earth does that guy C***e have on the Govt officials? He returns to BVI after years away and rakes in Millions.

    Like 18
  11. Anonymous says:

    I would have taken half of the salary and do a better job. Mark said he didn’t want an expert in ports. I’m no expert in ports. I know about ports and have some knowledge. He wanted someone he can trust. I never been arrested for a crime or had anyone close to me being arrested for breach of trust in public office etc. so I am actually better qualified than CSC.

    Like 17
  12. Well suh says:

    Interesting the mention of “build me a house, store,office building”. All those schoolchildren were talking about a big house on the north shore being built on weekends etc.
    Hope govt be putting out tenders for expansion of Balo soon, going to need a lot more room for this crowd.

    • redstorm says:

      imagine anyone could have gotten a job,though they cannot read a blue print or make a bar chair. Its worst than COVID, no ethics and limited morals.

  13. @ WELL SUH says:


  14. Hugh Darley says:

    If anyone wants the details and all the documentation to clear up the entire Tortola Pier Park project all they have to do ask me to provide all documents. I personally brough the project to the new NDP government and created the entire project approach. Neither Minister Vanterpool or Cline had any knowledge of the Cruise Industry or how to develop such a project. I taught them everything they needed to know about the process and also delivered the two berthing agreements form NCL and Disney. We ha da contract to build the port with a not to exceed contract with McAlpine of Grand Cayman for an not to exceed $49 Million contract. We were never paid for delivering the project and berthing Agreements which were under our advice set much higher than the eventual fees paid by the lines. IDEA mandated for the Government to set head Tax at $15 per pax. Once IDEA left the project Disney and NCL renegotiated the head taxes to $13 and $14 respectively and took control of all 7 days oof potential berthing availability. Please let me disclose the full story and why the project then costs the amount of Guarantee i secured for the people of the BVI. The guarantees were for $90,000 to build a $49 Million port. But politicians the bank and local interest like the Investment club allegedly put $45 Million in their pockets. Just call for more information.

    Like 1
    Dislike 1

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