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Anthony Thomas No Longer Commissioner of Property and Procurement as Governor Bryan Makes Changes to Move Projects Forward

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Anthony Thomas, appointed by Governor Albert Bryan in January 2019 as commissioner of the Dept. of Property and Procurement, has resigned, the Consortium can confirm.

His resignation, which Mr. Thomas said was precipitated by a “fundamental difference” between himself and the governor, took effect on Tuesday, Feb. 14.

The departure comes just over a month after Mr. Bryan’s termination of Denise George, who was attorney general during the governor’s first term in office. She was dismissed on Dec. 31. 

In his resignation letter, Mr. Thomas looked back on achievements at DPP during his four-year tenure. “Over the past four years we have managed to transform DPP and the executive branch of the Government of the Virgin Islands through the use of technology,” he wrote, according to a copy of the letter obtained by the Consortium. “In leading the technological transformation, DPP strategically transitioned from a manual paper process to an electronic process.”

Governor Bryan, in a statement to the Consortium Tuesday afternoon, explained his and Mr. Thomas’s diverging takes on the department, describing DPP as critical to the territory’s recovery and development, while holding fast to the belief that processes must accelerate. “He believes Property and Procurement is a regulatory agency, I believe it’s a service agency to deliver goods and services to customers as well as employees,” Mr. Bryan said. “P&P is a key factor in our recovery. We have to procure, contract and pay faster. The agency has to facilitate this happening, not regulate it into a standstill.”

Governor Bryan has long spoken about changes coming to his cabinet as he tries to move the territory forward in his final term in office.  During an interview with the Consortium following his reelection in Nov. 2022, Mr. Bryan honed in on DPP, saying he would “gut out procurement” because it takes too long to get projects off the ground. “Eighteen people got to sign something before it gets processed,” Mr. Bryan protested.

He said the department had failed to provide tools to contractors in a timely manner which he believes has led, in part, to the delay of the new Juan F. Luis Hospital modular hospital, called JFL North.

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