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Changes to DoA Hours

In an effort to reduce costs and still deliver the best possible service to its clients, the Department of Agriculture (DoA) will continue selling agricultural supplies and nursery plants on Saturdays and suspend sales on Wednesdays.

Effective today (Monday, 7 September) opening hours for the DoA's sales section for agricultural supplies, nursery plants and other cash transactions at the Lower Valley office will be Monday to Tuesday and Thursday to Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday hours will be 8:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., and the section will be closed for sales on Wednesdays.

In 2006, the DoA began opening its agricultural sales and nursery sections on Saturday mornings. "This has been extremely popular and despite being open for only a half day, Saturday mornings currently reflect the busiest sales," said acting Assistant Director - Agriculture, Brian Crichlow.

"However this has meant incurring overtime costs for staff to work on Saturdays. As part of our commitment to government to cut expenses, we have had to determine how to reduce costs in a way that would minimize the impact on our customers.

"So with Saturdays being most popular and Wednesdays the slowest, we decided to continue to open on the former, extending the hours slightly, and closing on Wednesdays," he said.

Customers are further advised that to keep costs to a minimum, telephone receptionists will not work on Saturdays. Accordingly on that day, no one will respond to phone enquiries.

Persons wishing to purchase feed, agricultural supplies or plants should simply come to the Lower Valley office during opening hours.

These changes will not affect the opening hours of the DoA's Administrative office, nor any of the other sections or the Cayman Brac office. These will continue to open to the public at the normal posted business hours.

"As the DoA continues to look for ways to reduce expenses, it may become necessary to trim other services," Mr. Crichlow commented.

"But our clients can be sure that as always, we will make every effort to deliver the highest quality service in the most cost-effective manner.

"We trust that everyone will understand and appreciate this, especially during these challenging financial times. Despite the challenges we must continue to work together to grow and expand local agriculture and food production for the benefit of all."