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Charlotte Amalie
Thursday, July 18, 2024


Tourism Commissioner Rafael Jackson on Wednesday night denied widespread reports that he is resigning his post.
"I’m still on the job," he said.
Jackson confirmed that he did have a meeting Tuesday with Gov. Charles Turnbull but said it was relatively brief and was about "office matters," not his position. He has another meeting scheduled with the governor Friday.
Last week Jackson went public with his criticism of the way the Industrial Development Commission made a major policy shift – voting to make timeshare projects eligible for tax benefits. He said the move was made without sufficient public input.
Although he stopped short of calling names, Jackson suggested that the governor pushed the issue through the commission.
Wednesday, Jackson said the matter is not dead and he is bringing some things to Turnbull’s attention.
"We’re still discussing this timeshare issue," he said, adding that he believes the government should impose some sort of tax on visitors using timeshare units. "That needs to be discussed."
Jackson’s concerns appear to go beyond timeshares. He said last week that he never wanted to serve on the IDC and told the governor so when he took the job as commissioner. Current conventional wisdom within the local hospitality industry is that the Tourism commissioner should devote his efforts full-time to tourism and not serve on other entities such as the IDC and the Port Authority board.

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