Mayor’s newsletter for 3 June 2021
Flowing from the approval of the Budget and Integrated Development Plan by Council last week, it is worth noting that various initiatives are underway to promote economic opportunities within the informal and SMME sectors of the local economy.
To assist informal traders in Pacaltsdorp and Touwsranten, trade stands will be erected in the next few months along with new informal trader containers in the George CBD. In Thembalethu a strategy is being formulated for the development and release of vacant business and industrial property. This will include the exploration of various funding solutions to support the installation of the infrastructure required to make these properties ready for occupation.
With regard to street traders who have stalls in the respective allocated areas of George, unused trade shelters are being relocated to other localities where footfall is more conducive to viable trade. Potential sites in Pacaltsdorp that align with the Go George bus routes and transfer sites have already been investigated. Through collaboration, re-location will commence shortly and continue depending on prospects of expanding the identified site and funding availability.
The existing database is being updated and under-utilised stands in the CBD will be re-allocated to open up opportunities for new traders to enter the marketplace.
We should emphasise that development and growth of our local economy is of critical importance not only for the jobs that they create but also ultimately to grow the revenue of the municipality.
Through our engagements with National Treasury we are preparing proposals to secure funding under the Neighbourhood Development Partnership Grant programme that can be utilised towards the upgrade, regeneration and restoration of inequalities within disadvantaged areas. This includes opportunities for trade and employment within the immediate neighbourhoods. The programme will render funding solutions to equip existing business and industrial sites in Thembalethu and Pacaltsdorp with facilities for traders and small industries and improve access to opportunities.
If we are successful with this application, it will certainly assist in supplementing the existing limited allocation of funds available on the Capital and Operational budgets for the 2021/2022 financial year. Plans will also be reviewed to see what improvements can be made and how training and skills development can be facilitated.
Residents are reminded that more vaccines are being made available for the over 60s as from 31 May. Residents can visit the municipal libraries for assistance in registering. If you do have access to the internet, please register your over 60 family members and friends as soon as possible at: https://vaccine.enroll.health.gov.za/#/. This portal can also be found via www.westerncape.gov.za
You can also dial *134*832# and follow the prompts (FREE on all South African Networks), or WhatsApp the word REGISTER to 0600 123456.