It is hard to believe that after 20 years about talking about having Customs and Immigration on the dock in Red Hook we still have to wait. The decision makers who blew this one should be required to go to Tortola on a long weekend, take some kids, pack many suit cases and start waiting just like they are making us wait. When they come home, they can wait in Cruz Bay while the boat waits for an open spot on the dock at the Customs house. I have waited close to an hour in the "creek" going around in circles going nowhere fast. They can wait for all their luggage to be unloaded and the wait in line for the authorities to clear them back into the U.S. Then they can wait as all the luggage gets loaded back on the boat. Then they can wait again when their luggage is unloaded again in Red Hook.
If put to a vote, what would the people who ride the ferries to BVI from Red Hook want in the beautiful new facility? A "concession area" or Customs and Immigration? Let's see. Who wins? A couple of concessionaires. Who looses. St. John with harbor congestion, tour operators who have to wait for space at the dock to "clear" back in, the ferry companies who have increased labor costs, and thousands and thousands of USVI and BVI residents and thousands of tourists. I vote for buying my pate from a food mobile outside the facility and being able to "clear" in Red Hook.
Thomas (T.K.) Kaestner Sr.
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