Customs and Immigration officers remain defiant to strike despite the issue being referred to the Industrial Tribunal and the fact that the prime minister has already agreed to their terms on the shift system.
Senator Dion A. Foulkes stated “Pursuant to the powers conferred upon me by the Industrial Relation Act I have referred the Trade Industrial disputes which respect to the Customs and Immigration Union and The Commonwealth Electrical Workers Union (CEWU) (Grand Bahama Power Company) to the Industrial Tribunal.”
A survey by the nautical news site, The Triton, reveals that many Bahamian customs agents are crooked, expecting and receiving bribes and delivering service based on gratuities.
Following a meeting with Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham, union officials ordered Customs and Immigration officers in the Bahamas to revert to a standard public servant work schedule of 9am to 5pm from Monday to Friday.
An import agent working for the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) was busted by Customs trying to bring in a 40-ft container of election campaign t-shirts without paying the full amount of duty on the goods.
Global Entry, a program allowing low-risk travelers entering the United States to bypass customs agents and be screened at kiosks instead, is being set as a permanent initiative.
Two US brothers and their cousin had $26,000 in poker winnings confiscated by authorities because they failed to declare their winnings as they left the Bahamas.
Three young men, travelling back to the US from the PokerStars tournament at Atlantis, had their cash winnings confiscated by authorities when they failed to declare the amount.
Such items as fishing boats, agricultural supplies, housing materials and electrical materials may be declared duty free to assist storm victims in rebuilding homes and businesses after Hurricane Irene.