The local tour operators at the Fort Street Cruise Tourism Village were in an uproar again today. This time they say it's because the BTB is restricting their movements with too many rules. That has pitted some tour operators who are confined to one area against others who can roam freely. It's one more symptom of too many fighting for too few scraps - and today tensions boiled over when the BTB - which officiates the terminal sent letters of reprimand to those tour operators who were allegedly caught roaming outside their approved area. We spoke to operators on both sides of the dispute:…


John Pollard - Owner, Big John Tours
"What they are doing which is plain to be seen, they are dictating the pace for us when we should move, when we should not move, if we should use the bathroom and whatever else may come along. Jules that is not right."

Dennis Tillet - Tour Guide, Big John Tours
"This morning we come da work and when we come da work bunch of we members the get let off, pictures the show them what, that how they di walk out of the boundary, walk out of the line."

John Pollard
"Jules these customers for us come out these doors. When they come out these doors Jules, these personnel have Big John shirts on. These people we greet them, we bring them across and take them inside. They don't want us to go because they are saying that their dispatcher is going to notify the personnel that go across the street. That is not happening brother. The problem is the people who are freelancers they approach the people who comes outside and that's what causing the problem. I am saying that the guest come on the outside and ask for Big John Tours, I'm saying that when they come on the step because of the other side that is there and they are right up to the step, they approach these people and give them a lower price than what they have already been agreed for. So my sales personnel would step up and go beyond from the point that we should not be and then we become the villains, we become the hunted, we come the target."


Lorenzo Bul - Freelance Tour Guide
"What they are saying is totally wrong. We abide by what BTB tell us but they should abide by staying there right then we are the ones..."

Person - Interrupting interview
"Keep my name out of your mouth."

Lorenzo Bul
"Nobody mention your name."

Person
"Because you wa get punch down."

Lorenzo Bul
"Nobody mention, did I mention your name?"

Person
"Have 5 dollars on you; keep my name out of yo mouth, alright."

Lorenzo Bul
"Did I mention his name? You see what all they are doing? This is what they do, this is what they do. Come and whenever you try fighting for your rights they are the ones to come and rush you, threaten you - you know this is not a criminal place, this is a tourism zone. And sometimes when he ready fi go with the people, they come and show their shirt and they say wow, oh it's him, they take away the tour from the man. They gone with the job so we stay without."

John Pollard
"Today 6 person got a job from Big John Tours."

Jules Vasquez
"6 out of how many?"

John Pollard
"6 out of 32 to be exact."

Jules Vasquez
"On an average or a good day, how much would get?"

John Pollard
"One a two ship day like this everybody would go Jules and some people would come back and leave again. So it is 32 people family wise, nothing to go on the table this evening, nothing to go on the table in the morning when they are up but to tell you go that side you can't stand up here."

Lorenzo Bul
"They don't get any tours? They are the ones who get the most. We sometimes 12 of us right here sitting down all in this area. Sometimes only 2 tour operators or 3 tour operators get a job and all the rest go home, they get the most."

Jules Vasquez
"So what happens next?"

John Pollard
"Next is yet to see, next is yet to see Jules because somehow some of these people feel like it's a play thing, it's a play thing and when people can't eat Jules, da problem. I think the time is going to come very shortly. People are going to sacrifice themselves Jules to send messages into what should happen out here."

Dennis Tillet
"We no di make no money, this da the honest truth, no no money none at all."

Jules Vasquez
"Now anybody listening to this might say, man well if you no di make no money, you wa stop long time so obviously you the make money."


Dennis Tillet
"No man, no man, nobody can't say that fi we. What I the explain to you is that we could put up a lee money so when time hard time come, we got a lee something you understand? But now it the get to a limit now whe part nothing inna the house, nothing inna the house so you know da fi go home go watch yo 4 pikni and do so, I no bring home nothing. They want their milk, they want their this, they want their that, this thing di get serious Mr. Jules. Me da nuh no problem man and me da no trouble person, the government whe deh in I have no problem with because me and they people alright you understand what I di say, this da no a governmental thing, this da wa BTB thing."

Lorenzo Bul
"Because this tourist village as I know, I've been working here for 22 years, I never see this to be like this yet. 3, 4 years it was totally in a mess up to today right."

Jules Vasquez
"It is getting worse?"

Lorenzo Bul
"It is getting worse and it will be more worse. We get statistic from BTB that things are very good but it's not so with us."

Tomorrow is another cruise day so the hostility is expected to continue. The tour operators are asking the BTB to come to the table to hammer out another agreement.