Belize City Council Act

Link to law: http://www.belizelaw.org/web/lawadmin/PDF%20files/cap085.pdf
Published: 2000

CAP. 85 BELIZE CITY COUNCIL ACT BELIZE

BELIZE CITY COUNCIL ACT

CHAPTER 85

REVISED EDITION 2000

SHOWING THE LAW AS AT 31ST DECEMBER, 2000

This is a revised edition of the law, prepared by the Law Revision Commissioner

under the authority of the Law Revision Act, Chapter 3 of the Laws of Belize,

Revised Edition 1980 - 1990.

This edition contains a consolidation of the following laws- Page

ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS 3

BELIZE CITY COUNCIL ACT 9

Amendments in force as at 31st December, 2000.

BELIZE

BELIZE CITY COUNCIL ACT

CHAPTER 85

REVISED EDITION 2000

SHOWING THE LAW AS AT 31ST DECEMBER, 2000

This is a revised edition of the law, prepared by the Law Revision Commissioner

under the authority of the Law Revision Act, Chapter 3 of the Laws of Belize,

Revised Edition 1980 - 1990.

This edition contains a consolidation of the following laws- Page

ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS 3

BELIZE CITY COUNCIL ACT 9

Amendments in force as at 31st December, 2000.

THE SUBSTANTIVE LAWS OF BELIZE REVISED EDITION 2000

Printed by the Government Printer,

No. 1 Power Lane,

Belmopan, by the Authority of

the Government of Belize.

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CHAPTER 85

BELIZE CITY COUNCIL

ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS

PART I

Preliminary

1. Short title.

2. Interpretation.

PART II

Constitution, etc., of the Council

Term of Council, Members, their Qualifications, etc.

3. Constitution of Council.

4. Term of office of Council.

5. Date of general election.

6. Qualification of members.

7. Disqualification of certain persons from being members.

8. Penalty for person incapable of election, or of person whose seat has

become vacant, who sits and votes.

9. Vacation of seat.

10. Direct election of Mayor.

11. Leave of absence.

12. Power to fix allowances.

PART III

Appointment of Officers and Servants and

Conditions of Service

13. Appointment of officers and servants of the Council and conditions

of service

14. Penalty on officers for taking gratuity

PART IV

Elections

15. Persons entitled to vote at elections to constitute a new Council

16. Regulations relating to elections

17. Regulations relating to election expenses

18. Returning Officer and Election Clerks

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PART V

Council Meetings and Proceedings

19. Council may make regulations to regulate meetings.

20. Vacancy not to invalidate meetings.

PART VI

The Belize City Fund

21. Establishment of Belize City Fund and monies constituting the Fund.

PART VII

Financial Provisions

22. Loans, when and how raised.

23. Submission of estimates of revenue and expenditure.

PART VIII

Duties and Powers of the Council

Streets and Adjoining Lands

24. General powers as to streets, etc.

25. Council’s power to coordinate activities of utility agencies.

26. Penalties for injuries to streets, etc.

27. Duty to fence or repair fences in certain cases.

28. Council may require owner to erect fence.

General Powers and Duties

29. Duties of the Council.

30. Additional general duties of the Council.

PART IX

Pensions

Preliminary

31. Interpretation of words and phrases used in this Part.

General Provisions Relating to Pensions

32. Pensions to be charges on revenues of Council.

33. Pensions not of right.

34. Computation of service for pension.

35. Retirement at fifty-five.

36. Pensions not payable before fifty-five years except in certain cases.

37. Maximum pensions.

38. Pensions; to whom and at what rate to be granted.

39. Period of service qualifying for pension defined.

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40. Council may apply part of a person’s pension towards the mainte-

nance of his wife or children.

41. Pensions not to be assignable.

42. Lump sum gratuity with reduced pension.

43. Payment of pension/gratuity upon resignation.

44. Gratuity where service does not qualify for pension.

45. Gratuity for female officer.

Manner of Computing Pensions

46. Pensionable service.

47. Computation of pensions etc., on what emoluments to be based.

48. Pensions Regulations.

PART X

Legal and General

49. General powers of Council to make by-laws.

50. By-laws prescribing fees.

51. Admissibility in evidence of documents signed by Mayor or City

Administrator.

52. Prosecutions to be instituted by Mayor or City Administrator.

53. Proof of legal proceedings.

54. Land, how acquired.

55. Council may cause work to be executed in case of default.

56. Members of Council not liable personally.

57. Protection of Council officials.

58. Expenses of the Council, how met.

59. Additional powers and functions of the Council.

60. Prosecution for offences.

61. Regulations.

62. Commencement.

63. Repeals and savings.

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CHAPTER 85

BELIZE CITY COUNCIL

[5th February, 1999]

PART I

Preliminary

1. This Act may be cited as the Belize City Council Act.

2. In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires:-

“allowance” means money payable under this Act to a councillor during the

time he is a member of the Belize City Council;

“Belize City” means such area as the Minister may from time to time by Order

published in the Gazette declare to constitute Belize City, which Order the

Minister is hereby empowered to make;

“Belize City Fund” means the fund established under section 21 of this Act;

“Council” means the Belize City Council constituted under this Act;

“general election” means an election held by reason of the expiration of the term

of office of the Council;

“member” means a member of the Council and includes the Mayor;

“Minister” means the Minister for the time being responsible for the subject of

Local Government unless otherwise specified;

1 of 1999.

42 of 1999.

Commencement

[17. 2. 1999]

S.I. 14 of 1999.

Short title.

Interpretation.

“new Council” means a Council newly constituted after a general election;

“rules”, “regulations” or “by-laws” means any rules, regulations or by-laws

made under this Act;

“voter” means a person registered as a voter in accordance with this Act.

PART II

Constitution, etc., of the Council

Term of Council, Members, their Qualifications, etc.

3.-(1) There shall be and is hereby constituted and established a Council to

be known as the “Belize City Council” which shall be a body corporate with

perpetual succession and a common seal.

(2) The Council shall have capacity to acquire, hold and dispose of real

and personal property and to sue and be sued in all courts of law.

(3) The Council shall consist of a Mayor and ten other members duly

elected in accordance with this Act and regulations made thereunder.

(4) The Council is lawfully constituted when the requisite number of mem-

bers has been elected.

(5) No temporary vacancy caused by death or otherwise shall affect the

validity of any proceedings of the Council.

4.-(1) Every Council shall hold office until the last day of February next

ensuing after the day on which the Council has been two years in office:

Provided that the Council elected to office in the general election held in the

month of March, 1999, shall hold office until the last day of February, 2003.

Constitution

of Council.

Term of office

of Council.

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(2) If during the term of office of the Council, a member’s seat becomes

vacant, the vacancy shall be filled within ninety days by holding a by-election:

Provided that a vacancy shall not be filled if it occurs within a period of one

year before the time when the seat which is vacated would ordinarily have been

vacated.

5. An election of members of the Council shall be held on the first Wednesday

next ensuing after the day on which the term of office of the Council expires.

6. No person shall be capable of being elected as a member of the Council

who is not a Belizean citizen and a voter.

7.-(1) No person shall be eligible for election as a member of the Council, or

having been elected, shall sit or vote on the Council, who:-

(a) holds an office of emolument or place of profit in the gift or

disposal of the Council; or

(b) has directly or indirectly by himself or his partner, any share

or interest in any contract with the Council; or

(c) is in the employment of the Council; or

(d) is an undischarged bankrupt, having been adjudged or

otherwise declared bankrupt under any law in force in Belize

or any other Commonwealth country; or

(e) has, in Belize or any other Commonwealth country, been sen-

tenced to death or to imprisonment (by whatever name called)

for a term exceeding twelve months and has not either suffered

the punishment to which he was sentenced or such other pun-

ishment as may by competent authority have been substituted

therefor or received a free pardon; or

Date of general

election.

Qualification of

members.

Disqualification

of certain

persons from

being members.

(f) is a person adjudged to be of unsound mind or detained as a

criminal lunatic under any law in force in Belize; or

(g) is a public officer, other than a teacher or an open vote worker;

or

(h) is a returning officer for an election to the members of the

Council; or

(i) has not ordinarily resided in Belize for at least one year imme-

diately preceding the date of the election, or is not domiciled

in Belize or ordinarily resident therein at the date of the elec

tion; or

(j) is or becomes a member of the National Assembly or of any

commission established by or under the Belize Constitution.

(2) For the purposes of this section, a person shall not be disqualified from

being a member by reason of his being interested in -

(a) any contract in respect of which the Minister shall remove the

disqualification if he is of the opinion that such removal will be

of public benefit; or

(b) any newspaper in which any advertisement relating to the

affairs of the Council is inserted; or

(c) any contract with the Council as a shareholder in any joint

stock company, but he shall not vote at any meeting of the

Council on any question in which such company is interested.

(3) The office of Mayor of the Council and the office of a member are

declared not to be offices of emolument or places of profit in the gift or

disposal of the Council although remuneration may be paid to such Mayor and

CAP. 4.

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member out of moneys provided by the Council.

(4) A person shall not be considered as holding an office of emolument or

place of profit in the gift or disposal of the Council or as being in the employ-

ment of the Council or as holding a public office by reason only of the fact that

he is in receipt of a pension or other like allowance in respect of service under

the Council or the Public Service or that he holds a general retainer as solicitor

of the Council.

8. Any person who -

(a) having been returned as an elected member of the Council with

out having been at the time of his election qualified to be an

elected member, or having since his election become disquali-

fied in pursuance of section 7 above from sitting and voting,

sits or votes on the Council; or

(b) sits or votes on the Council after his seat has become vacant

under section 9 below,

shall, for every day on which he sits or votes after his seat has become vacant,

be liable to a fine of one hundred dollars to be recovered by action in the

Supreme Court by any person who, with the written consent of the Attorney

General, sues for it.

9. If any elected member of the Council:-

(a) dies; or

(b) by writing under his band addressed to the Mayor, or in the

case of the Mayor, to the Deputy Mayor, resigns his seat on

the Council; or

(c) makes any declaration or acknowledgment of allegiance to

any foreign state or power which does not recognise dual

Penalty for

person

incapable of

election, or of

person whose

seat has become

vacant, who sits

or votes.

Vacation of seat.

nationality or is hostile to Belize- or

(d) becomes a citizen or subject of any foreign state or power

which does not recognise dual nationality or is hostile to Belize;

or

(e) is adjudged a bankrupt; or

(f) is sentenced in Belize or any other Commonwealth country

to death, penal servitude or imprisonment for a term ex

ceeding twelve months; or

(g) accepts any office of emolument in the Public Service or un-

der a Town Council in Belize; or

(h) becomes a member of the National Assembly or of any Co-

mission established under the Belize Constitution; or

(i) is absent without leave or other reasonable cause from four

consecutive meetings of the Council; or

(j) becomes subject to any of the disqualifications specified in

sections 6 and 7 above, his seat on the Council shall there-

upon become vacant.

10.-(1) The Mayor shall be directly elected by the electorate from among

persons who offer themselves as candidates for Mayor in a general election

held to elect a new Council.

(2) At the first meeting of the Council after every general election to con-

stitute a new Council, and at the end of every year thereafter, the members of

the Council shall elect a Deputy Mayor from among their number.

CAP. 4.

Direct election

of Mayor.

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(3) Whenever a vacancy occurs in the office of Mayor through death, res-

ignation or otherwise, the Deputy Mayor shall, subject to sections 6, 7 and 9

above, act as Mayor for the remainder of the term of office of the Council.

(4) During the illness or absence on leave of the Mayor, the Deputy Mayor

shall exercise and perform all powers and duties conferred upon the Mayor by

this Act and regulations made thereunder.

(5) The Deputy Mayor may at any time during his term of office, be re-

moved from office at a meeting of the Council by resolution of two-thirds of the

members of the Council.

(6) Notice of a resolution under subsection (5) above shall be given to all

the members of the Council not less than fourteen days before the meeting at

which the resolution is proposed.

11- (1) The Mayor may, with the concurrence of four other members, grant

leave of absence to any member for a period not exceeding six months.

(2) The Council may grant to the Mayor leave of absence not exceeding

six months.

12. The Council may by resolution fix an allowance to be paid to members

from monies constituting the Belize City Fund.

PART III

Appointment of Officers and Servants

and Conditions of Service

13.-(1) The Council shall appoint a suitably qualified person as City Adminis-

trator who shall be the chief executive officer of the Council and shall be

responsible for the day to day affairs of the Council.

Leave of

absence.

Power to fix

allowances.

Appointment of

officers and servants

of the Council and

conditions of service.

(2) The Council may appoint such other suitably qualified officers and

servants as it thinks necessary for the efficient administration of the affairs of

Belize City.

(3) The power to remove, promote, or take disciplinary action against

officers and servants of the Council, including the City Administrator, shall be

and is hereby vested in the Council.

(4) The Council may pay its officers and servants such salaries, allow-

ances, pensions, gratuities and other benefits out of the Belize City Fund as it

considers necessary.

14. Every officer or servant employed for the purposes of this Act who

exacts or accepts on account of anything done relating to his duties any fee or

reward whatever other than the salary or allowance ordered or allowed by the

Council is guilty of an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine of

not less than two hundred dollars nor more than five hundred dollars.

PART IV

Elections

15.-(1) Every person who-

(a) is registered as an elector for the electoral divisions under the

Representation of the People Act comprised in Belize City;

and

(b) subject to subsection (2) below, is in possession of an

identification card issued to him under that Act; and

(c) resides within the limits of Belize City,

shall be entitled to vote at the election of a member of the Council.

Penalty on

officers for taking

gratuity.

Persons entitled

to vote at

elections to

constitute a new

council.

CAP. 9.

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(2) Notwithstanding subsection (1) above, a person who has been regis-

tered under the Representation of the People Act, but who is unable to pro-

duce his identification card, shall be permitted to vote upon proving to the

satisfaction of the presiding officer that although he has been registered he has

not been issued with an identification card or that the identification card issued

to him has been lost or destroyed.

(3) Where a person is permitted to vote under subsection (2) above, the

presiding officer shall so state to the candidates or agents then present in the

polling station, and also make a record of his reasons for so doing and shall

maintain a list of the names and registration numbers of the electors voting

without producing their identification cards, showing the number of the ballot

paper issued to each of them.

16.-(1) The Minister may make regulations:-

(a) to provide for the registration of electors-,

(b) to provide for the holding of elections and by-elections of

members of the Council-,

(c) to provide for the conduct of elections of members of the Coun-

cil;

(d) to prohibit any act or matter which in his opinion is not

conducive to the maintenance of order on polling day;

(e) to declare any act committed in the course of any campaign

for election or at an election, an election offence,

(f) to declare the grounds upon which an election may be

challenged and the persons who may challenge an election;

Regulations

relating to

elections.

CAP. 9.

(g) to declare the grounds upon which an election may be

avoided and the procedure for challenging an election;

(h) to provide for the trial of election petitions and matters con-

nected therewith including the deposit of security and the

award of costs;

(i) to prescribe the form of the ballot papers and sample ballot

papers;

(j) to provide for the custody and disposal of ballot papers;

(k) to prescribe the method of marking votes at elections;

(1) to provide for penalties for the breach of any regulation; and

(m) to prescribe for all such other matters as may be necessary

for the carrying out of the provisions of this Act.

(2) Contraventions of any regulations made under subsection (1) above

may be declared by the Minister to be illegal practices, and provisions may be

made in the said regulations for the punishment on summary conviction, of

persons committing or aiding, abetting, inciting, taking part or attempting to

take part in the commission of such illegal practices, by:-

(a) a fine not exceeding two thousand dollars; and

(b) disqualification from voting at any election under this Act, the

Town Councils Act, the Representation of the people Act,

and from being elected or appointed, as the case may be, as a

member of a City Council, Town Council, Village Council or

of the National Assembly for a period of three years from the

date of his conviction.

CAP. 87.

CAP. 9.

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(3) Regulations made by the Minister under this section shall be subject to

negative resolution by the House of Representatives.

17.-(1) The Minister may make regulations -

(a) with respect to the incurring of expense and the making of

payments by or on behalf of a candidate, whether before,

during or after an election, on account of or in respect of, the

conduct or management of such election;

(b) requiring the appointment of an election agent through or by

whom all expenses or payments as mentioned in paragraph

(a) above shall be incurred or made;

(c) fixing the maximum amount of expenses that may be incurred

or paid, whether before, during or after an election, on

account, or in respect of the conduct or management of such

election;

(d) fixing the time within which all election expenses shall be

paid and barring all claims in respect thereof not made within

the prescribed time; and

(e) requiring a return of expenses and prescribing the form in

which the same shall be made and verified.

(2) Contraventions of regulations made under subsection (1) above may

be declared by the Minister to be illegal practices, and provision may be made

in the said regulations for the punishment on summary conviction, of persons

committing or aiding, abetting, inciting, attempting to take part or taking part in

the commission of such illegal practices, by:-

(a) a fine not exceeding two thousand dollars; and

Regulations

relating to

election

expenses.

(b) disqualification from voting at any election under this Act, the

Town Councils Act, the Representation of the People Act,

and from being elected or appointed, as the case may be, as a

member of a City Council, Town Council, Village Council or

of the National Assembly for a period of three years from the

date of his conviction.

(3) Regulations made by the Minister pursuant to this section shall be

subject to negative resolution by the House of Representatives.

(4) An election petition may be presented in respect of any illegal practice

declared by such regulations to be the grounds for the presentation of any

such petition.

18.-(1) For the purposes of holding an election, the Elections and Boundaries

Commission established under section 88 of the Belize Constitution shall, from

time to time and as occasion demands, appoint a person to be the Returning

Officer for Belize City, and may appoint one or more persons to assist the

Returning Officer in the performance of his duties. A person so appointed to

assist the Returning Officer shall have all the powers and may perform all the

duties of the officer he is appointed to assist, and any reference in this Act or

regulations made thereunder to a Returning Officer shall, unless the context

otherwise requires, be deemed to include a reference to every such person.

(2) The Chief Elections Officer shall, with the approval of the Commis-

sion, appoint an Election Clerk and one or more Assistant Clerks for Belize

City. If at any time between the dissolution of a Council and the declaration of

the result of the election following thereon the Returning Officer dies or be-

comes incapable of performing his duties as such, the Election Clerk shall

forthwith report that fact to the Chief Elections Officer and shall discharge all

the duties and exercise all the powers of the Returning Officer until some other

Returning Officer is appointed or the Returning Officer ceases to be incapable

of performing his duties, as the case may be.

CAP. 87.

CAP. 9.

Returning

Officer and

Election Clerks.

CAP. 4.

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(3) An appointment made under subsections (1) and (2) may be revoked

at any time.

PART V

Council Meetings and Proceedings

19.-(1) The Council may from time to time make regulations to regulate Coun-

cil meetings and proceedings, and the meetings and proceedings of any

Committees established by the Council.

(2) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1) above, such regu-

lations may provide for all or any of the following matters, namely:-

(a) the regulation of the proceedings of the Council and of Com-

mittees and the conduct of meetings thereof respectively;

(b) the regulation of the time and manner of holding annual and

other stated meetings and also ordinary meetings of the Coun-

cil and regulating the business that may be transacted thereat

respectively;

(c) the provision of the custody of documents and regulation of the

custody, and use, and mode and form of attestation of the com-

mon seal of the Council;

(d) the regulation of the duties of the Council’s officers and ser-

vants;

(e) the procedure to be followed at the election of Deputy Mayor;

(f) the places at which ordinary and special meetings of the

Council may be held;

Council may

make regula-

tions to

regulate

meetings.

(g) the procedure for convening meetings of the Council;

(h) the period of notice to be given to members before a meeting

of the Council;

(i) the person who shall preside at meetings of the Council;

(j) the quorum for meetings of the Council and the manner of

voting thereat;

(k) the prohibition of any member of the Council or of a Commit-

tee from taking part in any discussion or voting in respect of

any matter in which he is directly or indirectly interested;

(1) the maintenance of order at meetings of the Council;

(m) the rights of certain persons to attend meetings of the Council

and the powers and privileges of such persons while in atten-

dance; and

(n) anything incidental to or connected with the matters referred

to in this subsection.

(3) Regulations made by the Council under this section shall be subject

to negative resolution by the House of Representatives.

20. The proceedings of the Council or of any Committee thereof shall

not be invalidated by any vacancy among its members, or the want of

qualification of a member.

Vacancy not to

invalidate

meetings.

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PART VI

The Belize City Fund

21. There shall be and is hereby established for the purposes of the

Council a fund to be known as “the Belize City Fund” into which shall be

deposited or credited:-

(a) all monies voted from time to time by the National Assembly

for the use by the Council in the administration of Belize City;

(b) all monies payable in any manner whatsoever to the Council

whether under or pursuant to this Act or regulations made there

under or otherwise;

(c) all fines and penalties recovered summarily on the information

of the Council or of any officer, servant or member thereof

for non-compliance with the provisions of this or any other

Act or rules, regulations and by-laws of the Council for the

time being in force.

(2) The Belize City Fund shall be kept at such banks or other financial

institutions as the Council may from time to time determine.

PART VII

Financial Provisions

22.-(1) Whenever the general interest and welfare or development of Belize

City will, in the opinion of two-thirds of the members of the Council, be ad-

vanced by an expenditure greater than can be met out of the annual revenue of

the Belize City Fund, the Council may, by resolution carried by its majority,

recommend to the Minister for the time being responsible for Finance, on the

guarantee of an annual allocation of such amount of the Belize City Fund as

may be equivalent to the annual interest and sinking fund necessary for its re-

demption, the raising of a loan, the proceeds of which shall be devoted to such

development.

Establishment

of Belize City

Fund and

monies consti-

tuting the Fund.

Loans, when

and how raised.

(2) Upon such recommendation the Minister for the time being respon-

sible for Finance may borrow such sum of money as may be authorised under

the Local Public Loans Act, and thereafter the sum necessary to meet the

annual interest and sinking fund for the redemption of the loan shall be a first

charge upon all monies which may then or thereafter form part of the Belize

City Fund:

Provided that:-

(a) it shall be lawful for the Minister for the time being responsible

for Finance to advance from the public funds of Belize any

sum required by the Council for a short period when the said

Minister is satisfied that the Council will be able from its ordi-

nary revenue to repay the amount advanced within a period

of six months from the date of such advance;

(b) the Minister for the time being responsible for Finance may,

with the approval of the House of Representatives, at any

time make an advance to the Council from the public funds of

Belize on such conditions as he may think fit.

23.-(1) The Council shall, before the end of January in each year, submit to

the Minister for the time being responsible for Finance, through the Minister,

an estimate of revenue and expenditure for the period of one year commenc-

ing from 11 April then next ensuing and the Minister for the time being respon-

sible for Finance may issue his warrant for the whole or such part of the lawful

expenditure as he may approve, subject to such conditions as to him may

seem fit.

(2) The estimates of the Council shall as soon as possible after receipt

thereof by the Minister for the time being responsible for Finance be laid by

him on the table of the National Assembly.

CAP. 80.

Submission of

estimates of

revenue and

expenditure.

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(3) The Minister for the time being responsible for Finance may, at any

time appears to him to be of sufficient urgency, permit the Council to incur any

lawful expenditure not provided in the approved estimates, and shall as soon as

possible thereafter inform the National Assembly that such additional expendi-

ture has been approved.

(4) In this section, “lawful expenditure” means expenditure incurred in the

exercise of any of the powers or performance of any of the duties conferred or

imposed on the Council by any existing or future legislation.

(5) The Council may from time to time make regulations prescribing the

manner in which the accounts of the Council are to be kept and disbursements

made, and for the audit of the accounts of the Council by auditors duly ap-

proved by the Council.

PART VIII

Duties and Powers of the Council

Streets and Adjoining Lands

24.-(1) All streets, in which term is included public drains and bridges within

the boundaries of Belize City, shall be under the control, care and manage-

ment of the Council.

(2) The Council is empowered in respect of any street to do any of the

following things:-

(a) to lay out, construct, repair, alter or widen all streets with

such material and in such manner as the Council thinks fit;

(b) to make surveys for the laying out of new streets;

(c) to determine what part of a street shall be a carriage-way

and what part a foot-way only;

General powers

as to streets, etc.

(d) to alter the level of any street;

(e) to stop temporarily the traffic on any street or part thereof

while such street is being constructed or repaired;

(f) to plant trees in any street in Belize City and erect tree guards

to protect the same;

(g) to provide for the naming, numbering and lighting of places

and streets, and

(h) to sell the surplus spoil of streets.

(3) The Council shall exercise the power to make any new street or divert

or widen or diminish the width or alter the level of any street only after inserting

a notice to that effect in the Gazette at least four weeks previously to the date

of the exercise of such power, inviting the residents of Belize City to make

representations in writing to the Council in connection with the exercise of the

power. The Council shall, before exercising the power, genuinely consider

and take into account the representations, if any, made by the residents of

Belize City, but shall not be obliged to follow them.

(4) Subject to subsection (6) below, the Council may by resolution

declare that any existing street shall be closed, diverted or turned, and that

some other shorter or more convenient course shall be substituted for any

street so closed, diverted or turned as the public advantage may require.

(5) Whenever it appears to the Council that having regard to the limited

use made of any street, the closing thereof without the provision of any other

course will not result in serious handicap, difficulty or inconvenience to the

public, the Council may, subject to subsection (6) below, by resolution de-

clare that the street be closed without ordering that any other street be

substituted therefor.

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Belmopan, by the Authority of

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(6) Before proceeding to exercise the powers conferred upon it under sub-

sections (4) and (5) above, the Council shall insert a notice in the Gazette at

least four weeks previously to the exercise of the said powers, and shall in that

notice invite the residents of Belize City to make written representations to it in

connection with the proposed exercise of such powers. The Council shall,

before exercising the powers, genuinely consider and take into account the

representations, if any, made by the residents of Belize City, but shall not be

obliged to follow them.

(7) The Council shall, in addition to the powers specified in this section,

enjoy such further additional powers in respect of public roads and streets

within Belize City as are conferred upon it by or under the Public Roads Act.

25.-(1) Without prejudice to any other powers conferred on the Council by

this Act or any other law, the Council shall have the power and responsibility of

coordinating the activities and operations of all utility agencies and property

developers within Belize City with respect to the excavation and restoration of

streets, canals, creeks and other public rights of way, with the object of pre-

venting damage to the city infrastructure and minimising the disruption of utility

services to Belize City.

(2) Where any damage or injury to the infrastructure of Belize City is caused

by a utility agency or the Council in the excavation and restoration of any public

road, street, canal, creek and other public right of way, the Council shall be

responsible, subject to subsection (3) below, to make good such damage or

injury and to restore the infrastructure to a good state of general repair.

(3) Where the Council incurs extraordinary expenses in repairing the infra-

structure by reason of the damage or injury to any street, road, canal, creek

and other right of public way caused under subsection (2) above or by exces-

sive weight passing along such street, road, canal, creek or other right of public

way or extraordinary traffic thereon, the Council may recover the expenses

from any person by whose order such damage or injury has been caused, as a

civil debt in any summary jurisdiction court.

CAP. 232.

Council’s power

to coordinate

activities of

utility agencies.

(4) For the purpose of subsection (1) above, the Council may make by-

laws to control and regulate the activities and operations of utility agencies.

(5) There shall be established within the Belize City administration a Util-

ity Coordination Unit with power to ensure effective coordination between all

utility agencies and to enforce by-laws made pursuant to subsection (4) above.

(6) In this section, the expression “utility agencies” means all corpora-

tions, companies and entities which provide electricity, water and sewerage,

telephone, telefax, gas and other utility services.

(7) The provisions of this section shall have effect notwithstanding the

provisions of any other law to the contrary.

26.-(1) Any person who, not being authorised by the Council or by any law:-

(a) encroaches on a street by making or erecting any building,

fence, ditch, or other obstacle or work of any kind upon,

over or under it or planting any tree or shrub thereon;

(b) places or leaves on a street any timber, earth, stones

or other things;

(c) digs up, removes or alters in any way the soil or surface or

scrapings of a street;

(d) allows any water, tailings or sludge or any filthy or noisome

matter to flow from any building or land in his occupation onto

a street;

(e) causes or permits any timber or other heavy material not

being wholly raised above the ground on wheels to be dragged

on a street;

Penalties for

injuries to streets,

etc.

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Belmopan, by the Authority of

the Government of Belize.

Belize City Council [CAP. 85

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(f) causes or negligently allows any retaining wall, foundation-wall

or fence erected on any land or slope of earth or any building,

erection, material or thing to give way or fall so as to injure or

obstruct any street;

(g) does or causes or permits to be done any act whatever by

which any injury is done to any street or any work or thing in,

or under, it; or

(h) defaces, obliterates or removes any number, mark or name

painted or affixed on any lot, house, building, street or square,

is guilty of an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceed-

ing five hundred dollars and to a further sum equal to the costs incurred by the

Council in removing the encroachment, obstruction or matter, or in repairing

any injury done as specified in paragraphs (a) to (h) above.

(2) No penalty shall be imposed under this section unless the information

or complaint is laid by the authority of the Council or some officer thereof.

27. If any land adjoining any street within the boundaries of Belize City is

allowed to remain unfenced or if the fences of such land are allowed to be or

remain out of repair and the land is, owing to the absence or inadequate repair

of any such fence, a source of danger to passengers, cyclists or pedestrians, or

is used for any immoral or indecent purpose, or for any purpose causing incon-

venience or annoyance to the public, the Council may, at any time after the

expiration of fourteen days from the service upon the owner or occupier of

such land of a notice in writing by the Council requiring the land to be fenced or

any fence on the land to be repaired, cause the land to be fenced or the fences

thereto to be repaired in a manner it thinks fit, and the reasonable expenses

thereby incurred shall be recoverable from the owner or occupier summarily as

a civil debt.

Duty to fence or

repair fences in

certain cases.

28.-(1) The Council may, by notice in writing to the owner of any land, require

such owner, within a reasonable time specified in such notice, to cause a suf-

ficient fence to be erected dividing the land from any adjoining street or to

cause any fence dividing the land from any adjoining street to be restored,

repaired or otherwise put in a proper state of repair.

(2) An owner who makes default in complying with the requirements of

any notice served upon him under this section is liable to a fine of fifty dollars

for every day that the default continues after written notice thereof from the

Council.

General Powers and Duties

29. The Council is entrusted with the general rule and good government of

Belize City and has power, subject to the provisions of this Part, to do all

things necessary to carry out such trust, and in particular has power and au-

thority to do or cause to be done all or any of the matters following:-

(a) to establish, regulate, control, maintain and manage markets,

slaughter-houses, bath-houses and wash-houses;

(b) to impose rents and fees upon persons using or benefitted by

such markets, slaughter-houses, wash-houses;

(c) to impose such restrictions upon owners of land as may be

necessary to prevent any building upon such land from being

or becoming a source of danger to surrounding properties

whether from fire or from its insecure construction or

dilapidated condition;

(d) to undertake the marking and numbering of lots, houses, build-

ings and yards for the purpose of distinguishing the same;

(e) to establish, maintain and control parks, gardens, squares and

Council may

require owner to

erect fence.

Duties of the

Council.

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Belmopan, by the Authority of

the Government of Belize.

Belize City Council [CAP. 85

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open places within the City;

(f) to erect and maintain any city hall or other building required for

public purposes;

(g) to establish, maintain and control a public library;

(h) to manage and dispose of any lands, buildings or other

property acquired or owned by the Council for public

purposes;

(i) to do all such other things or matters for the purpose of in

creasing the convenience and amenity of Belize City.

30. Without prejudice to any other powers conferred upon, or duties im-

posed on, the Council by this or any other Act or regulations made thereunder,

the Council shall have the obligation to perform the following duties in Belize

City in an efficient and timely manner:-

(a) to maintain all public cemeteries in Belize City in a sanitary

manner and to keep such cemeteries in a general state of good

repair;

(b) to coordinate, control, manage or regulate the timely and effi-

cient collection and removal of all garbage material from all

residential or commercial areas in Belize City;

(c) to construct, repair, alter, widen, lay out and make surveys

for streets in Belize City, especially in new residential or

commercial areas;

(d) to repair, cleanse and keep clean and in good repair, all or

any part of the walls of any public drain, canal or creek in

Belize City, but this duty shall not be construed as compel-

Additional

general duties

of the Council.

ling the Council to cleanse any public drain, canal or creek

at times when the public health would in the opinion of the

Council be endangered by the operation.

PART IX

Pensions

Preliminary

31. In this Part, unless the context otherwise requires:-

“officer” means a person who is on the permanent established staff of the

Council

“pensionable emoluments” includes salary and personal allowance;

“personal allowance” means a special addition to salary granted personally

to the holder for the time being of the office;

“salary” means the actual salary attached to an office.

General Provisions Relating to Pensions

32. There shall be charged on and paid out of the revenues of the Coun-

cil all sums of money as maybe granted by way of pension to an officer in

accordance with this Part and regulations made thereunder.

33.-(1) No officer shall have an absolute right to a pension under this Act nor

shall anything contained in this Act limit the right of the Council to dismiss an

officer without a pension.

Interpretation of

words and

phrases used in

this Part.

Pensions to be

charged on

revenues of

Council.

Pensions not of

right.

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Belmopan, by the Authority of

the Government of Belize.

Belize City Council [CAP. 85

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(2) Where it is established to the satisfaction of the Council that an officer

has been guilty of negligence, irregularity or misconduct, the officer’s pension

may be reduced or altogether withheld.

34. Subject to section 44 below, all the service of an officer, including ser-

vice on probation or agreement if there has been no breach between such

service and the confirmation of the officer in his appointment but not including

service while under the age of twenty years, shall be taken into account in

computing his pension.

35. The Council may require an officer to retire from its service at any time

after he attains the age of fifty-five years.

36. No pension shall be granted to an officer who has not attained the age

of fifty-five years, unless on medical evidence to the satisfaction of the Council

that he is incapable, by reason of some infirmity of mind or body, of discharging

the duties of his office, and that such infirmity is likely to be permanent and is

not attributable to his own misconduct or gross negligence.

37. No pension granted to an officer under this Act shall exceed two thirds

of the highest pensionable emoluments drawn by the officer at any time in the

course of his service.

38. Subject to this Part, an office may be granted on his retirement a pen-

sion at three-fourths of the rate for which provision is made in the Pensions

Regulations made under to the Pensions Act.

39.-(1) Subject to this Part, service qualifying for pension shall be the inclusive

period between the date on which an officer began to draw salary from the

funds of the Council and the date of his leaving the service of the Council.

Computation

of service for

pension.

Retirement at

fifty-five.

Pensions not

payable before

fifty-five years

except in certain

cases.

Maximum

pensions.

Pensions to

whom and at

what rate to be

granted.

Period of service

qualifying for

pension defined.

(2) Service qualifying for pension shall be unbroken service, except in

cases where it has been interrupted by abolition of office or other temporary

suspension of employment not arising from misconduct, gross negligence or

voluntary resignation.

40.-(1) Where an order of maintenance has been made by a court of compe-

tent jurisdiction against an officer to whom a pension has been granted, the

Council may, on its being proved to it that there is no reasonable probability of

the order being satisfied, from time to time deduct from the monies payable to

the officer by way of pension such sum or sums as the Council may think

expedient, and apply the same to satisfy wholly or in part the maintenance

order.

(2) Where an officer to whom a pension has been granted has left Belize

and deserted and left his wife or child within Belize without sufficient means of

support, the Council, on being satisfied that the wife or child is by reason of

the officer’s absence from Belize unable, and would but for the absence be

able, to obtain an order of maintenance, may from time to time deduct from

the monies payable to such officer by way of pension such sum or sums as the

Council may think expedient, and may apply it for the maintenance and sup-

port of the wife or child.

(3) Where an officer to whom a pension has been granted has been adju-

dicated a person of unsound mind and has a wife or a child or children living,

the Council may deduct from the monies payable to such officer by way of

pension such sum or sums as it may think expedient and apply it for the main-

tenance and support of the wife or any child or children of the officer.

41. No pension granted under this Act shall be assignable or transferable,

or liable to be attached, sequestered, or levied upon, for or in respect of any

debt or claim whatever.

Council may apply

part of a person’s

pension towards

the maintenance of

his wife or children.

Pensions not to

be assignable.

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No. 1 Power Lane,

Belmopan, by the Authority of

the Government of Belize.

Belize City Council [CAP. 85

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42. Any officer to whom a pension is granted under this Act may, at his option,

be paid in lieu of such pension, a pension at the rate of three-fourths of such

pension together with a gratuity equal to twelve and one-half times the amount

of the reduction so made in the pension.

43.-(1) A person who resigns from the service of the Council after completing

not less than ten years of continuous service may be granted a gratuity.

(2) An officer who resigns from the service of the Council after complet-

ing not less than fifteen years of pensionable service may be granted in

accordance with regulations made under this Act:-

(a) a gratuity, if he resigns after completing not less than ten years

of continuous service; or

(b) a pension and gratuity, if he resigns after completing not less

than fifteen years of continuous service.

(3) In the case of subsection (2) above, the pension (but not gratuity) shall

be deferred until the officer reaches the normal retirement age, or in special

cases with the approval of the Council, any lower age not being less than fifty

years.

44. Subject to the provisions of this Part, where a person retires from the

service of the Council before completing ten years of continuous service, he

may be granted in respect of such service, a gratuity not exceeding five times

the annual amount of the pension which might have been granted had there

been no qualifying period.

45.-(1) Where a female officer retires or is required to retire for the reason that

she is about to marry or has married, and she is not eligible for the grant of any

pension or otherwise eligible for gratuity under this Part, she may be granted in

respect of her service under the Council, a gratuity of an amount not exceeding

Lump sum

gratuity with

reduced

pension.

Payment of

pension/gratuity

upon resigna-

tion.

Gratuity where

service does

not qualify for

pension.

Gratuity for

female officer.

five times the annual amount of the pension for which she would have been

eligible had there been no qualifying period.

(2) For the purpose of computing the amount of gratuity under subsection

(1) above:

(a) the reference to two-thirds of her highest pensionable

emoluments shall have effect as if the reference were a

reference to one fifth of her annual pensionable emolu

ments;

(b) the annual amount of that pension shall not exceed one

fifth of her annual pensionable emoluments.

Manner of Computing Pensions

46.-(1) For the purpose of computing the amount of an officer’s pension the

following periods shall be taken into account as pensionable service:-

(a) any periods during which he has been on duty;

(b) any periods during which an officer has been absent from

duty on leave with full pay.

(2) The periods during which an officer has been absent on leave on

half-pay shall, for the purposes of this Part, be counted at the rate of one

day for every two days of such period.

(3) Any period during which he has been absent on leave, other than

those specified above, shall be deducted from the officer’s total service in

order to arrive at his period of pensionable service.

Pensionable

service.

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No. 1 Power Lane,

Belmopan, by the Authority of

the Government of Belize.

Belize City Council [CAP. 85

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47. For the purpose of computing the amount of an officer’s pension:-

(a) in the case of an officer who has held one office for a period

of three years immediately preceding the date of his retire

ment, the full pensionable emoluments payable to him at

that date in respect of that office shall be taken;

(b) in the case of an officer who at any time during such period

of three years has been transferred from one office to an

other, but whose pensionable emoluments have not been

changed by reason of such transfer or transfers, the full pen-

sionable emoluments payable to him at the date of his re-

tirement in respect of the office held by him shall be taken;

(c) in other cases the average of the full pensionable emoluments

payable in respect of each of the offices substantively held by

the officer during his tenure thereof within such period of three

years shall be taken:

Provided that if such average is less than the full pensionable emoluments

which were payable to him at the date of the first transfer within such period of

three years, the Council may grant him a pension calculated upon the full pen-

sionable emoluments payable to him at that date.

48.-(1) The Council may make regulations to govern the administration of

pensions and gratuities payable to its officers and servants under this Part.

(2) Regulations made by the Council under subsection (1) above shall be

subject to negative resolution.

Computation of

pensions, etc.,

on what

emolument to be

based.

Pensions

Regulations.

PART X

Legal and General

49.-(1) The Council may from time to time make bylaws on all matters con-

nected with the rule and good order of Belize City and for the proper carrying

out of the objects and purposes of this Act.

(2) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1) above, such by-

laws may provide for all or any of the following, namely:-

(a) for the establishment, control and use of public lavatories and

latrines;

(b) for the licensing of horses, mules, carts, drays and handcarts

kept or used in Belize City and the imposition of fees in res-

pect thereof,

(c) for the establishment, regulation, control, maintenance, and

management of markets, slaughter-houses, bath-houses, and

wash houses, and the imposition of rents and fees payable by

persons using or benefited by such markets, slaughter-houses,

bathhouses, wash-houses, meat or other stalls therein;

(d) for regulating the lighting of places, streets, markets and other

buildings under the control of the Council, and the naming and

numbering of any houses, lots, places and streets in the City;

(e) for prohibiting, except in the case of wild animals which may

be shot in the bush, the killing or slaughtering of any animal the

flesh of which is intended for human food in any place within,

or within one mile beyond the limits of Belize City other than

in the slaughter-house;

General powers

of Council to

make by-laws.

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No. 1 Power Lane,

Belmopan, by the Authority of

the Government of Belize.

Belize City Council [CAP. 85

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(f) for prohibiting the exposing or exhibition for sale of the flesh of

any animal, other than a wild animal shot in the bush, in any

place within, or within one mile beyond the limits of Belize City

other than in the market or such other place or places as the

Council may appoint;

(g) for the regulation of parks, gardens, public recreation grounds,

bridges, streets, canals and public drains, including the imposi-

tion of fees for the use thereof;

(h) for the service of notices, orders and other documents required

or authorised to be served by or on the Council under this Act

or any regulations made thereunder; and

(i) generally for all matters connected with the rule and good gov-

ernment of Belize City and the proper carrying out of the

objects and purposes of this Act.

(3) All by-laws made by the Council under this section shall be laid before

the House of Representatives through the Minister after the making thereof and

shall be subject to negative resolution by that House.

50.-(1) Where any by-laws made by the Council under this Act prescribe any

fees, fines, penalties and forfeitures, such by-laws shall be subject to affirma-

tive resolution by the House of Representatives.

(2) All licences, fees, fines, penalties and forfeitures imposed by this Act or

any by-laws made hereunder shall be recoverable under the Summary Juris-

diction Acts.

51. All documents and notices whatever purporting to be issued or written

by or under the direction of the Council and purporting to be signed by the

Mayor or City Administrator, shall be received as evidence in all courts of law,

and shall be deemed to be issued or written by or under the direction of the

By-laws

prescribing

fees.

CAP. 98.

CAP. 99.

Admissibility in

evidence of

documents

signed by

Council without proof unless the contrary is shown.

52. Unless otherwise provided in any other Part of this Act, all offences

against this Act or any by-law made thereunder shall be tried summarily, and

may be prosecuted on the complaint or information of the City Administrator

or Mayor or of any officer of the Council authorised in that behalf, or of any

member of the Belize Police Department.

53. In any prosecution or other legal proceeding under this Act or any by-

laws made thereunder instituted by, against or under the direction of the Council,

no proof shall be required:-

(a) of the persons constituting the Council, or the extent of

Belize City; or

(b) of any order to prosecute or of the particular or general ap-

pointment of any officer of the Council; or

(c) of the authority of the Mayor, City Administrator or other

officer of the Council to prosecute; or

(d) of the election of the Mayor of the Council; or

(e) of the presence of a quorum of the Council at the making of

any order or the doing of any act,

until evidence is given to the contrary.

54. Where any land is required for public purposes by the Council such

land shall for all purposes be taken to be land required by the Minister for

public purposes, and may be acquired in the manner prescribed by the Land

Acquisition (Public Purposes) Act.

Mayor or City

Administrator.

Prosecutions to

be instituted by

Mayor or City

Administer.

Proof of legal

proceedings.

Land, how

acquired.

CAP. 184.

42 of 1999.

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No. 1 Power Lane,

Belmopan, by the Authority of

the Government of Belize.

Belize City Council [CAP. 85

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55.-(1) Whenever under this Act any works of any kind are required to be

executed or carried out by the owner of any premises and default is made in the

execution of the works within the time prescribed, the Council may, if it thinks

fit, cause the works to be executed or carried out, and the expenses incurred

by the Council in respect thereof shall be a debt due to the Council by the

owner for the time being of the premises.

(2) The amount of the expenses so incurred by the Council shall bear inter-

est at the rate of seven per centum per annum from the date of completion of

the work executed or carried out by the Council until payment in full be made

to the Council.

(3) Subject to this Act, the amount of the expenses so incurred with the

interest thereon and mortgagees’ costs shall be a first charge on the property in

respect of which the work was executed or carried out by the Council and shall

be prior and preferential to all existing or future charges or encumbrances ex-

cept those in favour of Her Majesty or the Government and the Council shall

have the like rights and remedies as if the payment of such expenses, interest

and costs had been secured by a legal mortgage of a fee simple in favour of the

Council.

(4) The Council shall not obtain any charge under this section unless a

memorandum giving particulars of the charge is executed by the Council and

recorded at the General Registry within two months from completion of the

work executed or carried out by the Council or within such further time as the

Chief Justice may allow under the General Registry Act.

(5) The Council may make rules prescribing the form of the memorandum

referred to in subsection (4) above.

(6) A memorandum required by this section shall be recorded without the

payment of any recording fee and shall be exempt from stamp duty.

Council may

cause work to

be executed in

case of default.

CAP. 327.

56.-(1) No matter or thing done and no contract entered into by the Council

and no matter or thing done by any member, officer or servant of the Council

shall, if the matter or thing were done or the contract were entered into bona

fide for the purpose of executing this Act, subject them or any of them person-

ally to any action, liability, claim, or demand, whatsoever.

(2) Any expense incurred by the Council, or by any such member, officer

or servant shall be borne and repaid out of the Belize City Fund.

57. Every person who obstructs or impedes or insults or molests or at-

tempts to obstruct or impede or insult or molest any member of the Council,

or the City Administrator or other officer or servant of the Council lawfully

authorised as such by this Act in the discharge of his duties or in his official

capacity or in the exercise of his powers either under this or any other Act or

any regulation or by-laws is guilty of an offence and is liable on summary

conviction to a fine not exceeding two thousand dollars.

58. All expenses incurred or payable by the Council pursuant to this Act

or any regulations made thereunder shall be paid out of the Belize City Fund

and all disbursements therefrom shall be in accordance with accounting regu-

lations which may be made by the Council from time to time.

59. Without prejudice to any other law which vests any powers in the

Council, the Council shall have and enjoy such additional powers and func-

tions as are specified in the following Acts:-

(a) Public Roads Act-,

(b) Trade Licensing Act;

(c) Intoxicating Liquor Licensing Act;

(d) Motor Vehicles and Road Traffic Act; and

Members of

Council not liable

personally.

Protection of

Council officials.

Expenses of the

Council, how

met.

Additional

powers and

functions of the

Council.

CAP. 232.

CAP. 66.

CAP. 150.

CAP. 230.

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No. 1 Power Lane,

Belmopan, by the Authority of

the Government of Belize.

Belize City Council [CAP. 85

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(e) Towns Property Tax Act.

60. A prosecution for an offence under this Act or any regulations made

thereunder may be commenced within one year after the commission of the

offence, or within one year after the Council becomes aware of the offence,

whichever is the later.

6l.-(1) The Council may make regulations for the better carrying out of the

objects and purposes of this Act, and without prejudice to the generality of the

foregoing, such regulations may provide for:-

(a) the power of the Council to direct, through a notice published

in the Gazette, that any lots or land within Belize City other

than National Land be filled up by the owner or occupier thereof

to the prescribed level, and the procedure to followed during

the filling up of the land;

(b) the power of the Council to recover costs, and the manner and

method of the recovery of such costs (including the sale of land

and buildings) incurred by the Council under this Act through

doing or causing any work to be done on the property of any

person in Belize City where such person has refused, neglected,

defaulted or failed to execute such work himself after due and

reasonable notice has been served on him by the Council;

(c) the authority of the Council to enter upon any land in Belize

City at all reasonable hours for the purpose of carrying out

powers and duties conferred or imposed upon it by this Act;

(d) the discretionary powers of the Council in dealing with indigent

or poor property owners in Belize City;

(e) foreshore improvement and any matters related thereto;

CAP. 65.

Prosecution for

offences.

Regulations.

(f) the erection of fences between adjacent lots and messages;

(g) the prohibition of unauthorized encroachments on the seashore,

river banks, and the banks of drains, canals, and creeks in

Belize City;

(h) the regulation of any bridges in Belize City, including the im

position of fees, fines and penalties in respect of the use of

same;

(i) the landing, storage and removal of inflammable liquids in

Belize City; and

(j) any other matter not specifically included in the paragraphs

above which may properly be dealt with by way of

regulations.

(2) Regulations made by the Council under this section shall be subject to

negative resolution by the House of Representatives.

62. This Act shall come into force on a day to be appointed by the Minis-

ter by Order published in the Gazette.

63.-(1) The Belize City Council Act shall stand repealed at the commence-

ment of this Act.

(2) All regulations, by-laws, rules, orders and other subsidiary legislation

made under the Belize City Council Act shall continue in force after the com-

mencement of this Act to such an extent as they are not inconsistent with the

provisions of this Act, until repealed by regulations, bylaws, rules, orders and

other subsidiary legislation made hereunder.

______________________

Commencement.

Repeals and

savings.

CAP. 66.

R.E. 1980- 1990.

CAP. 66.

R.E. 1980 - 1990.
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