About 40 people turned up on Saturday morning, May 5, for a workshop on homeownership at the Bethany Moravian Church hosted by Delegate to Congress Donna Christensen and the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation.
Attendees heard opening remarks from St. John Administrator Leona Smith, John’s Folly Learning Institute President Alvis Christian and Senator at Large Carmen Wesselhoft, who called on the Department of the Interior to transfer National Park land back to the local government.
People who visit Love City fall in love with the V.I. National Park and purchase homes which drives up the price of land and frequent tourists have altered traditional island ways of life, Wesselhoft explained.
“Just a couple hundred of acres could make all the difference in the world,” she said.
Architect Robert deJongh, business owner Jose Penn, community activist Liza Trey and V.I. Housing Finance Authority
Director Clifford Graham were among the panelists who discussed initiatives which must be taken to address the local homeownership crisis on the island.