Community News
In honor of the national celebration of 14 July 2017, the PresdentGibbs delivered the following speech:


Ladies and gentlemen,

If you see me moved in front of you this morning, it is because this July 14 is particularly loaded with symbols in my eyes. First, because he is the first I celebrate as President of the Collectivity. But also of course, because this July 14 is the witness of a decade of a St. Martin became Overseas Collectivity.

The 14 July 1789, the people of Paris took the Bastille. France as a whole, united under the fraternal flag, was drawing a democracy in the making, with these strong imperatives of freedom of thought and expression, but also that formidable ideal of justice to which we all aspire.

Freedom, equality, brotherhood: these are the pillars of the declaration of the rights of man and the citizen, these are the bases of our Constitution. They are not empty words: they are principles that guide us, refuges values, the benchmarks that oblige us, especially in these changing times, in this period of profound changes in our societies.

They invite us to engage with lucidity and courage for the general good. They also remind us that our Nation, our Republic, is in distress if it is not carried by citizens animated in their actions, by the sense of fraternity and that of justice.

It is for this reason that 14 July has always been a privileged opportunity for me to pay tribute to all volunteers in the voluntary sector of the island, but also to all those who give their energy, Sometimes at the risk of their lives, in the service of the common good and of the population. I am thinking in particular of our law enforcement agencies, but also our school staff and health professionals.
I doubtless forget them, so I address to all those who, through their passion and dedication, carry out considerable work in the service of our community, my warmest thanks and the testimony of my respect.
The school year has ended and the examination period is now closed. I congratulate all schoolchildren, high school students and students on the island who have worked hard this year and who have collected the Fruits of their labor.
A word also to future students, who will leave the island tomorrow to continue their journeys under other horizons: I wish you always keep in mind that you are the ambassadors of Saint Martin. You are our image outside the territory, so we expect you, through your behavior and your work, to make us proud of you. Your families, your elected officials, all Saint-Martin's, count on you.
With regard to education, I am hopeful that things are going on in Saint-Martin, the elected representatives and our services are working and are mobilized in this direction: our territorial council has therefore agreed, on 19 last June, on the formulation Of a motion for a vice-rectorate in Saint-Martin.
A file that I defended as a member of Parliament and which I would like to see fulfilled as President of the Community, because we can not be satisfied with the decision of the State, to endow our Community with a simple academic direction . The COM is celebrating its 10 years this year: it is time to leave Guadeloupe, which penalizes us especially in this crucial yet priority area of ​​education.
Moreover, under the LO 6314-9 and LO 6314-10, I intend to adopt a plan for the development of French-language education in the near future, which will finally take into account the cultural and linguistic specificities of Saint- Martin.
The 14 July is traditionally the occasion to take stock of the actions undertaken by the executive. As I had promised, this report was presented to the elected members of the Territorial Council at the 29 public meeting last June.
First of all, I pointed out that a government that is out of breath, a community that, 10 years after its accession to 74, continues to operate as a commune, with its share of legal uncertainty. So I made a commitment to upgrade and modernize our administration: I want well-trained agents, as efficient as they are in their jobs, and this includes the restructuring of our services.
A new Directorate of Human Resources and a new Directorate General of Services will be operational in September: these two key positions will boost the new dynamic of work that our administration needs.
In partnership with the AFD, an organizational, HR and process audit is in preparation and we should be able, as of the beginning of the school year, to develop a solid "administration" project, based on the political project that the new majority Territorial Council.
Other projects are progressing, and the commitments we have made to the voters will be respected. I will spare you the long exposition I have already had occasion to make before the elected representatives of the Territorial Council.
However, I would like to come back to a few important points: the tax audit, which will enable us to elaborate the simple, clear, coherent and fair tax system that we are defending, will start in October;
The development of a multi-annual investment program must also be developed through a partnership with AFD;
We have also made good progress on the development of our tourism strategy 2017-2027 and I am delighted to see the welcome that the socio-professionals of the island have reserved for it. We will continue the consultation throughout the summer, and I will give an exhaustive presentation of this strategy at the beginning of the school year, before the elected representatives of the Territorial Council;
The work of our future tourism development plan will be launched and on this subject of economic development, the primary economy is not forgotten since the Local Action Group in favor of Saint-Martin's agriculture is granted 3 Million of European funds up to 2020:
As regards urban planning, we will initially clean up our SOP so that it is fully in line with the regulations, before thinking, in the longer term and in the broadest consultation, the development of a new Regulatory document;
Human resources will be deployed as quickly as possible, to speed up the regularization procedures of some 300 files "50 not geometric" currently delinquent in the drawers of our services.
On this subject of our environment, I insisted that we allocate an additional budget to the beautification of our neighborhoods. Our agents are at work. I congratulate them for the remarkable work they have done at the Hôtel de la Collectivité.
I would also like to have a word of thanks for my elected officials and for all those who have participated in the two weekend operations of cleaning the island lately. You are helping to make Saint-Martin better, I congratulate you for your involvement and I give you appointments in a few months, to reiterate your efforts!
Participation in these operations could have been more important, of course, but you have set an example and I am convinced that others will follow us more and more in our next operations.
I stop there listing of shares that the new majority I have the honor to lead has undertaken on this first quarter of term.
I would like to extend special greetings to our guests from the Dutch part of the island, who do us the honor of being with us this morning. Ladies and gentlemen, you know how much cooperation is the key to the success and prosperity of our small territory, and I wanted to tell you how pleasing you are this morning.
There can sometimes be misunderstandings or disputes - in which family do we quarrel? - nevertheless, we still have a lot of work to do together and I do not doubt for a moment, to have before me interlocutors Open and animated by the same desire to see Saint-Martin succeed.
Lastly, I would like to thank all those who are gathered here on this occasion to reaffirm in a solemn and convivial way our fidelity to the values ​​of freedom, equality and fraternity.
The National Day and the anniversary of our Collectivity must be, finally, a great popular festival. I invite all Saint-Martinis to participate in these rejoicings and I wish you all a beautiful July 14.
Vive Saint-Martin, Long live the Republic, Vive la France!

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