By Raquel Gonzales, Guest Blogger
It’s Sunday, March 22, 2019 here in Boracay.
This morning, I had the chance to see the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Roy Cimatu in the island.
I heard that he is visiting Boracay to meet with some local officials to check the development and some improvements of the island.
They have a new policy here where visitors or tourists can’t just easily enter the island, unless they have confirmed hotel reservations.
I also noticed that the local government is now strict with the permits. That includes the working permits of rental suppliers like us. I am here for the Shangri-La Resort Spa’s 10th year anniversary celebration. (Raquel Gonzales is President of Powersource Production and Events).
As we moved around, the locals seem to dislike the e-bikes. Although these are environment-friendly, these electronic bikes are slow moving. Only the owners of old tricycles can avail or can purchase this type of vehicle used to transport people in their destinations.
The roads are clean, but still dusty because of on-going construction.
Waste disposal has definitely improved with garbage segregation. There are rubbish containers everywhere. The island is imposing strict regulations on the no smoking policy, with most hotels, having designated areas for smoking.
There are also sanitation standards posted in establishments as proof of sanitary inspections by government agencies. Ratings range from Satisfactory and Very Satisfactory to Excellent.
Residents are not sure yet if there will be no flooding anymore with all the drainage systems in place, as well as the sewerage systems fixed by many establishments. These will all be tested during the rainy season.
Some enterprising individuals told me that their businesses now are not as good compared before. “Mahina”, a vendor said.
But the most rewarding thing about the new Boracay are comments from foreigners who would want to come back in the island. “It’s lovely and clean,” a tourist said.