The Virgin Gorda Easter Festival will experience another scale-down this year.
This according to Minister of Culture Dr Natalio Wheatley who said the festival and its government organisers, the Virgin Islands Festival & Fairs Committee, is heavily in debt.
“Before we had even
“Scale backs will happen because we have a limited amount of money and we cannot repeat the current situation where we have hundreds of thousands of dollars of unbudgeted expenditure moving forward.”
This $300,000 in arrears include monies owed to vendors who Dr Wheatley said will be paid.
“I am going to make it a priority that vendors are paid going forward in a timely fashion and all previous bills we’ll satisfy as quickly as possible and I should say right here all legitimate expenses,” he said
Budget for ALL 2019 festivals is $700,000
The budget for all festivals in this calendar year is a little more than $700,000 and the Culture Minister said
“This budget is $710,000 and we know that cannot do what we have been doing. So every year we’re getting overruns. So, that’s why I say we have to make a decision as to whether we’re going to scale the festivals to 710,000 or whether we’re going to allocate more money and that’s a conversation we have to have not just as a government but as a people,” he said
Last year’s festival also encountered a few scale backs due to the impact of natural disasters in 2017. The festival saw a reduced budget of $100,000.
The exact budget for the Virgin Gorda Easter Fest was not given.
Meanwhile, newly-elected Chairman of the Virgin Islands Festivals & Fairs Committee, Carnel Clyne, said some of the acts expected to perform at this year’s Easter Fest include Jamaican dancehall artiste Dexter Daps, as well as the 2019 International Power Soca Monarch, Mr Killa from Grenada.
This year’s festival will be honouring Mr Roy O’Neal. The event kicks off at 10 am on April 13 with the Culture Food Fair at the Little Dix Grounds. It then continues the following week on the 20th, the 21st, and the 22nd.