Local Government Minister, Desmond McKenzie, says he’s been forced to suspend funding to local authorities to pay for standpipe usage.

Minister Mckenzie says because the standpipes are being abused, the government now owes close to a billion dollars to the National Water Commission.

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He was speaking at a Local Government Town Hall meeting in Westmoreland yesterday.

The Minister says the system will not be put back in place until a proper system has been put in place to monitor and maintain standpipes.

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Meanwhile, Minister McKenzie is urging Jamaicans to pay their taxes, which he says is used to fund critical services such as the Jamaica Fire Brigade.

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