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Local Island NEWS in English - Updated Weekly
News for the Week of October 13, 2014

Beginning in December 2002, Insider was proudly the first website to provide readers the Cozumel News in English.

Articles are slected from local newspapers which we feel will be of interest to our diverse audience. These articles are then translated into English. We cannot always investigate the veracity of a particular article but offer these translations as a reflection of the Cozumel community news just as reporters write it for Por Esto, Diario de Quintana Roo, Novedades and El Seminario and many other sources.

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Note: All translated articles are the property of Cozumel Insider and cannot be used, displayed or reproduced without express written permission from Cozumel Insider.

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Cozumel Arrivals: 14 Ships this Week
10/12 - Numbers remain low this week in Cozumel as cruise ship arrivals drop to 14 ships registered to dock for the second full week of October 2014. This is 1 less than the number of ships last week and 6 less than the "20 in port" which marks a "high season" beginning. With Fall well underway an estimated 42,000 people will visit Cozumel this week via these cruise ship leaving an estimated US$ 3.4 million dollars behind in the local economy.

High season for cruise ship arrivals typically runs from November 15 - April 15 each year with the remaining 7 months of the year considered "low season."

Once again this week Puerta Maya pier will be the big economic winner as 7 ships dock at Puerta Maya, 3 will dock at TMM/SSA International pier while Punta Langosta pier will see 4 arrivals and the downtown San Miguel pier will have -0- ship arrivals.

This week begins with 3 ships docking on Monday, 4 on Tuesday, 1 ship Wednesday, 3 on Thursday, 2 on Friday and then Saturday will bring 1 ship in port and Sunday will see -0- ships.

View the Cruise Ship Calendar for this Week
Cozumel's Jewelry Stores Under a Watchful Eye
Five jewelry shops were visited by staff of the Procuraduría Federal del Consumidor (PROFECO) in Cozumel. The federal Agency inspectors detected that the establishments do not give guarantees, receipts, do not exhibit prices and do not accept returns. All of this was generated by the complaint of a cruise ship tourist. During the revision they seized 700 pieces of jewelry that were offered as silver and were not.

The revision surfaced in the midst of a controversy due to the complaint of a tourist who arrived on the island aboard a cruise ship and supposedly acquired a silver chain which was later determined to be another metal. The tourist then filed a complaint with PROFECO who conducted an investigation. The establishment can be fined up to 2,000 times the minimum wage for each such offense.

EDITOR'S NOTE: The top complaint and request for assistance for this website comes from tourists who have purchased thousands of dollars of jewelry and later determined to be fake. The stores perpetrating this fraud against travelers are right downtown in the main tourist zone and some have very well adorned stores. BE CAREFUL when purchasing any fine jewelry in Cozumel!
Cozumel to Host the Making of a Suspense Movie
Starting in November Cozumel will host the filming of a suspense movie. Featuring a national cast, the story will involve a couple who get lost on an island and have to figure out how to survive. The filming locations will take place at Punta Sur and other chosen areas. This should give further promotion to Island. The movie is expected to be released in mid-2015.

Pablo Aguilar, Manager of promotion of the Cozumel tourism promotion trust, announced that the project is called “La Isla” and “Tiger” productions will send its technical staff in mid-October to assess the filming set of the natural habitat and to meet the technical needs required for filming at Parque Punta Sur among several other attractive tourist points.

The idea is that the filming will have a duration of at least three months and although he would not elaborate on details, it was commented that the film will be based on a story of two people who come to an island, get lost and find a number of difficulties in an unknown environment. It was mentioned that the cast is Mexican with a renowned performer and there were some destinations in the Riviera Maya that applied to host the movie, however, the decision was made to film in Cozumel.

Finally, he confirmed that the production would consist of a technical team and assistants of approximately 150 people, and their presence would leave an income in the city since they will occupy some hotels and will consume many of the services offered by Cozumel.
Stronger Regulations for Marine Permits in Cozumel
The National Marine Park of Cozumel launched an "ultimatum" to all boat owners and fishermen who do not have permits to operate within the Marine Park. In case of detection, they could be sanctioned.

The director of the National Marine Park reef Cozumel, Christopher González Baca, acknowledged that the owners of vessels that do not have permission to operate within the National Marine Park will be removed and those which are being used for poaching inside the protected area will be confiscated.

He stressed that the National Marine Park placed signs to also warn fishermen poaching in that area that it is prohibited.

Also, the interviewee acknowledged that this holiday season is when Cozumel registers a greater presence of tourist boats within the National Park, therefore surveillance and monitoring has been reinforced to avoid the presence of foreign, and irregular vessels that put the safety of the reefs at risk.

He recalled that in the operation conducted last year, it was detected that nearly 30 percent of ships entering the Marine Park do not have permits. This year they will be applying sanctions and be stronger with boat owners.
Celebrating Columbus Day in Mexico
On August 3, 1492, Christopher Columbus set out from Spain with three ships - the Santa María, the flagship, La Nina and La Pinta expecting to reach the East Indies in order to establish trade routes and colonies. However, on October 12, 1492 his voyage took him to a continent unknown to Europeans, resulting in the Discovery of the New World. This continent would come to be known as America.

Even though some historians and investigators state that other European seafarers arrived to the continent before Columbus, this historic event brought about the encounter of two worlds - changing and mixing the diverse cultural, social, economic and political structures of two continents forever.

Since 1928, in México, October 12 is known as Día de la Raza (ethnicity, ancestry, and lineage) In other countries in the American continent, the day is observed as the Day of the Cultures or Day of the Americas expressing ethnic pride. In Spain the day is celebrated as the Day of the Hispanic World and in the U.S. as Columbus Day.
Cozumel's Navy Carries Out a Practice Drill in Case of Spill
A preparation drill was carried out successfully by the Navy so as to be ready in case of an emergency fuel spill in the sea. The staff of the Secretariat of the Navy (Semar) and other agencies that make up the Local Contingency Plans managed to "recover" more than 40 thousand liters of artificial diesel that had been dumped in the sea in case of an "accident."

Last week the Navy, through the Naval Sector of Cozumel, conducted the "drill of spill of hydrocarbons," close to the ferry pier, located to the South of the island, next to the public beach called "Caletita."

The objective, as reported in a press release, was measuring responsiveness of different units that integrate the Local coordination of the Contingency Plan Committee to combat and control spillage of hydrocarbons and other harmful substances at sea.

In the simulated situation, a fictitious vessel named "Paradise Bay Ferry" had a failure in its propulsion system which caused it to collide with something on its port side and it sat partially submerged. This caused a crack in the fuel tank and a supposed spill of approximately 40,000 liters of diesel which would affectithe area of the national reef Park of Cozumel (PNAC).

Official sources pointed out that with these actions in compliance with agreements and international conventions posted in this area, as well as the enforcement of the legal framework, Cozumel is now prepared with such activities to improve its ability to react to ensure the safety of human life in the inland sea area, as well as the safeguarding of its natural resources.
Cozumel Athletes Prepare for National Olympiad
Six Cozumel athletes were invited to train in high performance sports with a possibility to participate in the National Olympiad 2015. ozumel’s athletes are Luz Patricia May Osorio, America Canul Erosa, Edward Rodolfo Pat Muñoz and Gabriel Ángel Canul Mac in the discipline of Weightlifting or Powerlifting, as well as Uriel Ulises Ciau Uc and Gabriel Andrés Castellanos Barrera in the wrestling category.

The director of sports on the island told the athletes that the municipal President is supporting their performance and on behalf of the Mayor, asked that they continue striving to prepare and transcend in their respective sports.
Arrested Condo Developer & Co-Conspirator Relased on Bond
As reported last week, Cozumel resident Frank DelCorno was arrested on September 13, 2014 at the Houston International airport. He was charged with being a fugitive from justice because of an outstanding arrest warrant from New Orleans, Louisiana. That arrest warrant, signed by a judge in New Orleans who after a review of the evidence, charges DelCorno with conspiracy to commit theft by fraud in the amount of $100,000 USD in a case involving a condo unit here in Cozumel at the Palmas Reales Condominiums. Also named in the warrant and arrested last weekend as a co-conspirator is Deborah Shepherd, owner of a condominium unit at Palmas Reales in Cozumel.

Both DelCorno and Shepard were released this past week on bond with a judge's order to report to New Orleans, Louisiana within 30 days to face trial for theft by fraud. Until his recent arrest, DelCorno and/or his construction company, was most recently involved in the development of the Landmark condominium project.
Playa Del Carmen Removes Atypical Kelp from Beaches
Through the direction of Federal maritime zone (Zofemat), Playa Del Carmen continues with a permanent program of beach cleaning.

The cleaning of beaches consist of removing atypical kelp that has been presented in recent days due to high temperatures and changing currents and the typical Caribbean rainy season. Roberto Jesús Pérez Briceño, director of Zofemat, said that so far of this week, workers have collected about 300 tons of kelp per day. There are now 90 people who are supported by two tractors, a 14-foot truck and two sweepers perform the cleaning. Marine waste is collected and transferred to points where it can be buried. The work is carried out from 5 to 17 hours every day of the week.
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August 13, 2014 (Most Recent) Comprehensive Mexico Travel Warning
Because we are continually asked about travel safety in Mexico and Cozumel, INSIDER always maintains the most recent, complete version of the U.S. State Department Mexico Travel Warning HERE on our website for traveler convenience.

The good news continues to be that there are currently no regional security warnings in place that cover Quintana Roo, Cancun, Cozumel or Costa Maya so make vacation plans now to get here for some fun in the sun!

The Mexico Travel Warning dated August 13, 2014 from the Department of State can also be viewed in its entirety on the Department of State website.

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