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Chamber of Hotels Parts Ways from CANATUR
Chamber Cites Lack of Reforms and Accounting Problems
Nosara and Samara Disagree with Separation

By Wilberth Villalobos Castrillo

The Costa Rican Chamber of Hotels (CCH) separated from the National Chamber of Tourism, CANATUR, for differences regarding the internal organization and after finding out about the poor financial management of the administration.

The decision was made by the CCH after the General Assembly of CANATUR was held on December 6, during which the results of the administrative management during 2012 were released. 

In Nosara and Samara, the members of the local Chambers of Tourism disapproved of the news of the separation. 

Marcos Carmona, president of the Samara Chamber of Tourism, CASATUR, which has been affiliated with CANATUR since 2012, indicated, “It’s a decision that affects national tourism.  If we continue dividing and each one works alone, this will be chaos.  We can’t work separately.”

Likewise, Marcos Johanning, secretary of the Nosara Chamber of Tourism, affirmed that disunity impedes working and getting things done well.  He commented that they have been affected in the Nosara Chamber since currently they don’t have a president and there isn’t much unity or people willing to work. 

Chamber of Hotels Requests Reforms

In an official communication, the Chamber of Hotels explained that they made a formal request to CANATUR to have an internal commission analyze and formulate changes in the affiliation process, the integration of associates in the general assemblies and the composition of the board of directors, among other reforms.  

However, the majority of the recommendations made by the CCH were rejected by CANATUR’s board of directors.

In addition, another major reason for which the Chamber of Hotels decided to separate finally was the lack of financial information that exists in CANATUR’s records from the month of June until September of 2012.

Juan Carlos Ramos, current president of CANATUR, does not agree with the Chamber of Hotel’s decision to disaffiliate. Although he recognizes that there were errors, misunderstandings and lack of communication, he said that they are currently working to solve the problems.  

“Of course we don’t agree with the disaffiliation of the Chamber of Hotels.  I feel that we all lose with the separation.  There were misunderstandings, lack of communication and human errors,” he expressed.  

According to Ramos, there were rumors about the real financial situation of CANATUR, but he explained that “it’s not as many affirm that CANATUR is facing bankruptcy and there isn’t any money.”

In addition, Ramos indicated that “the accounting records exist, but the external auditor didn’t present the required documentation of the 2012 financial statements in time.”

However, he mentioned that they now have all of the information. “I hope that by February when we convene another session we can present all of the complete financial documentation,” he assured.

According to Flora Ayub, executive director of the Chamber of Hotels, they have always been allies since CANATUR formed and the CCH occupied a position as vocal in the organization’s board of directors. 

With the disaffiliation of the CCH, three important members have now separated from CANATUR.  In previous years both the Association of Airlines (ALA) and the Costa Rican Association of Car Rentals (ACAR) decided to part ways with the organization.

 

More Regional News

Repair Work Advances at Nicoya Hospital After Earthquake

The repair of damaged infrastructure in La Anexion Hospital in Nicoya, after the earthquake of September 5, 2012, has progressed 40% and it is estimated that it could be ready in May.

Proposal to Restructure Management of National Parks and Wildlife Refuges

The Ministry of Environment and Energy (Ministerio de Ambiente y Energía, SITRAMINAE) Workers Union and former Environment deputy minister, Mario Boza, announced that a new law aimed to restructure the management of national parks and wildlife refuges is being drafted.

TSE Pays Thousands of Dollars in Rent While Still Owing Rent to Municipality

Starting this year, the Tribunal Supremo de Elecciones (TSE- Electoral Supreme Court) will pay 1,332,000 colones ($2,664) per month in rent for the offices of the regional branch in Nicoya.

Taxes on “luxury” homes skyrocket up to 10x after readjustment of property values

A readjustment to construction values, made by the Ministry of Hacienda (Tax department), caused the taxes on “luxury homes,” (homes valued at about $234,000 USD and above) to increase between 57%-160% for this year, depending on the type of home.

Lack of Fire Hydrants Causes Problems for Firefighters

“To put out a fire I draw water from the river, the sea, a pool or the well of a friend or neighbor. Here there are no hydrants”, explained Jo Pinheiro, describing the dramatic situation the Nosara firefighters go through when they need water to extinguish fires.

Technical Closure of Nicoyan Cemetery Begins

They finally demolished the boundary wall of the current municipal cemetery, thus initiating the long awaited technical closure.

Costa Ricans Consume 3 Kilograms of Agrochemicals Per Year        

Costa Rica is currently one of the countries that uses large amounts of chemicals in its agricultural production, even using chemicals that are banned in other countries since they pose serious health risks.

Caja Intervenes at Nicoya Hospital for Administrative Mismanagement

The Board of Directors of the Costa Rican Social Security System (CCSS or Caja) decided to intervene starting December 27 at Nicoya’s Hospital de La Anexión for administrative mismanagement that has developed. Therefore there will be a transfer of the medical and financial directors to other venues in order to establish another work team for a year or more, according to the needs of the institution.

New Regulations for Liquor Licenses Should Be In Place By Late January

The Municipality of Nicoya is in the process of applying the new regulation for the commercialization of licenses for alcoholic beverages.

Ticos in the United States: Living the American Dream Has Its Price

We walk from the train station toward a Guatemalan restaurant where we decide to have breakfast. It’s 11 a.m. on a summer day in August, a little late to be eating the first meal of the day, but Sandra, Miguel and Robert requested the day off of work to be with us, and they decided that before opening the doors to their private life, we should get to know each other briefly.

Pictures and News of the Month

The Voice of Nosara brings you a brief recap of December stories you might have missed.

Requesting Permission to Build Will Only Take 30 Days

In general, those who have taken the steps to build a house have had to exercise patience since the process of obtaining all the permits has taken from several months to a year or more in some cases.

Nicoyans Speak Out Against Planting Transgenic Corn in Guanacaste

Guanacaste cantons, like Abangares and Nicoya, are fighting to remain free of transgenic corn now that the company Delta and Pine is looking to plant modified international Monsanto seeds in the canton of Abangares. The controversy will be delayed until the end of February since the State National Biosecurity Commission requested more information about the product. 


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