Ancil Dennis, Chief Secretary of the Tobago House of Assembly, and Secretary of the Division of Tourism. (Image courtesy Ancil Dennis Facebook)

Tobago House of Assembly’s Chief Secretary Ancil Dennis is examining the counterproposal put forward by Tobago hoteliers for the Government’s distribution of the $50 million COVID-19 Relief Upgrade Grant.

In a release, the Tobago Hotel and Tourism Association (THTA) praised Dennis for his intervention in the matter, as the association had rejected the Tobago Tourism Agency Limited’s (TTAL) proposal.

TTHA is the Tobago House of Assembly’s tourism executing agency.

According to THTA, Dennis held a virtual meeting with the association on Monday evening to iron out the association’s main grouses.

They said the funding criteria were “onerous” and “unfair.” They also questioned the legitimacy of hundreds of the properties listed for the grant.

They said the TTAL’s figures were flawed. Instead, they recommended statistics generated by the Division of Finance.

The association argued that because TTAL based the distribution of the grant on flawed statistics, the distribution was skewed.

During the meeting with Dennis, the situation has changed, the association said.

They said the distribution is now based on the Finance division’s statistics and 191 properties, not the original 420, will be given the grant funding. They also said the accommodation categories have been revised.

Dennis told Guardian Media, he is “analysing” the hoteliers’ information and hopes to “resolve the matter soon”.