As the government prepares to launch its Small Home Repair Programme next week, an industry stakeholder said now is the opportune time to utilize private professionals to ensure rebuilt homes comply with the building code.
The government has said that building code infractions on Abaco and Grand Bahama largely contributed to the extensive damage caused during the passage of Hurricane Dorian.
“I think if they’re going to focus on something, they need to focus on finding ways of ensuring that the building code is properly enforced. In fact, I along with a group of my colleagues from the architects sector and the contractors sector, we produced a position paper and our suggestion was to leverage the professionals you have in the country now, the private industry professional engineers and architects,” Bahamas Society of Engineers (BSE) President Quentin Knowles told Guardian Business.
“We’ve talked to some officials, but I think they’re just so overwhelmed with this Hurricane Dorian business, it seems that that is probably dominating all of the other resources.”
Knowles and his colleagues last year formed the ACE alliance (architects, contractors and engineers) which is proposing the utilization of private professionals to assist residents on Abaco and Grand Bahama through the reconstruction process.
The Small Home Repair Programme intends to provide funds to residents impacted by Hurricane Dorian to assist with their rebuilding efforts.
“There will be four categories for which vouchers will be granted. Residents whose homes were assessed with minimal damage will be eligible for $2,500 in vouchers; those with medium damage will be eligible for $5,000 in vouchers; those with major damage will be eligible for $7,500 in vouchers; and those whose homes were destroyed will be eligible for $10,000 in vouchers,” the Bahamas Disaster Reconstruction Authority revealed in a press statement last week.
The program is expected to be launched on February 10.