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Mid-Nov: Digging into new immigration law

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ANNUAL ROAD RACE December 2. Get ready. (Read specifics below)
ROAD RESURFACING: The Concreto Ecologico Co. continues laying pavement of one lane of Puerto Aventuras Blvd. The street will be partly closed as construction progresses , starting at Porto Bello to Condominio Peninsula. The Colonos asks all to obey the security signs (see photo below) directing drivers to drive and leave vehicles on the lane opposite the construction lane for 10 days to allow the concrete to dry. Drive carefully.
TASTE OF PLAYA food fest Nov. 18 at Parque Fundadores, on the beach below the bus station and adjacent to the ferry dock in Playa del Carmen.
RIVIERA MAYA JAZZ FEST Nov. 22-24, 7 p.m. nightly at Mamitas Beach in Playa del Carmen


Start new visa process in your own country


Mexican consulate in U.S. questions

snowbirds’ visa need for 6-month stays

(Part of a continuing series by Solomon Freimuth, soon to be  licensed attorney. He has spoken on this subject in Puerto Aventuras to a standing-room only audience and is a sponsor of the Pelican Free Press.)

By Solomon Freimuth
       An important factor everyone needs to consider about the new Immigration rules is that, since Nov. 9, 2012, nobody will be granted residency by initiating application from within Mexico! — unless they already have an FM3 or FM2. This doesn’t mean that interested parties can get residency at the border. Applications and registration will actually have to be initiated at the various Mexican Consulate offices outside of Mexico, usually in one’s home state, in order to get started on temporary or permanent residency.
The regulations for the 2011 Mexican Immigration law were just published  and after reading through them and taking some notes, I wanted to share a basic summary of the points that I thought were pretty important for the expat community here in Mexico”s Mayan Riviera. This summary is a preliminary and basic treatise and I will attempt to update some of the more detailed information as time passes. (Ed. Note: Some links have been provided on specifics of the rule, but they are in Spanish and not of much help to Anglos. We await translations in executive summary form.)

Immigration filters


There will be basic immigration filters/checkpoints at airports, seaports and terrestrial

border crossings, very similar to the existing filters. Many foreigners do not need a visa prior to entering Mexico, because Mexico has signed treaties with various countries that visas aren’t needed for their citizens.  (Note: American, European citizens don’t need visas.)   

Once you get to the immigration filter the immigration authority will give you a temporary document that will prove your migratory status. At the time that you are given this document you will be asked the purpose of your trip to Mexico and the document will reflect that purpose, be it work, pleasure, etc. If you plan on staying in Mexico for more than 30 days, you will have to trade in the temporary document at the immigration office closest to your home in Mexico.
At these immigration checkpoints, you may be asked to provide your passport, personal information, reason for trip, place of residence outside of Mexico, where you plan on staying in Mexico, who you will work for in Mexico if that’s the case, activities in Mexico, income sources and how you are planning on leaving Mexico.
It seems to me that this information is going to only be required from you if you are in doubt about your intentions for coming into Mexico: children, families or well dressed tourists and business people probably will not be unduly questioned. A note of caution: Arriving in the airport after ingesting a few too many on the plane might get you an entrance interview. Use common sense.
(Ed. Note: A spokesman at the Mexican embassy in Boston informed the Pelican Free Press that tourist visas (FMMs) are still used and suggested that snowbirds intending visits no longer than six months can leave well enough alone and save the cost of  a visa in the process.)  (Next Issue: Temporary and permanent residency.)

The Mail Bag…

Piracy threatens PA’s future, says writer

“If something is not done, Puerto is going to be a place of the past.”
So wrote Sharyn Guzzi in the sorry wake of the theft of four expensive boats from the Puerto Aventuras marina canals in one year.

“I purchased my condo in Puerto to retire in the next 10 years. The gated community and the boasting of an almost zero percent crime rate was the deciding factor to us. We purchased our condo six years ago and have been going down for vacations twice a year.
“My husband and myself are boaters here in New York. We loved the place (Puerto)because we would have shipped our boat here when we finally retire. Now we are considering looking in Florida and selling the condo before things get worse. If things do not change with the way thefts are handled, it does not make any sense for us to live in Puerto.
“It is very upsetting to hear that when a boat is stolen you have to do your own investigation into why no one is assisting you. When you finally retire things are not so easily replaceable financially. I know if our boat was stolen it would be our last boat.
“It seems to me that the gossip amongst the owners is very similar to my story. If something is not done Puerto is going to be a place of the past.”
There appears to be little initiative by marina ownership and government officials to initiate a response to the thefts or share assurances that steps are being taken to improve protections for the property of boat owners.
Meanwhile, the local media report that the Mexican Navy is battling poachers/drug dealers along the Costa Maya coastline south of here near Chetumal, an area, says the Navy, rife with water-borne criminal activity that includes poaching and drug dealing. Costa Maya is a small tourist area in the municipality of Othan P. Blanco and site of the villages of Mahahual and Xcalak. It has a considerable local fishing industry.


On mutual respect…

Dear Editor:
I’ve been reading the Pelican Press for a while, and I must say that I enjoy everything about it. I have been a resident in P.A. for almost 15 years, and I never knew that there was such a lovely community.
I am Mexican, and I must say that some of the locals (I am referring to Mexicans or people that speak Spanish) dislike outsiders. I must clarify that it is not my case. I use to think that outsiders were taking control of P.A. and that Mexicans were going to get kicked out soon of the holiday resort. Shortly after, I was proved wrong.
I came to realize that inside P.A. there is another community. This community consists of the so called “outsiders”. I also got a chance to see all the great stuff that the people in this community do for P.A. I am glad to see that these people are always helping everyone regardless their ethnicity. This might have nothing to do with any of the recent articles posted, but maybe someone might appreciate my letter.
José A. Ramírez

Climate change cause of Mayan decline ?

      The demise of the scientifically and culturally advanced awe-inspiring culture of the early Mayans has been laid at the feet of warfare, disease, social unrest and over-farming, but a new study suggests that large-scale climate change – read that “drought” – may have been the cause.

Using a 13,500-year-old stalagmite taken from a cave in Belize, scientists say they were able to create a record of rainfall in the Mexican and Central American rain forest going back 2000 years. What they found was a period of abundant rainfall during the period of high culture and development that eventually became a period of drought before the decline. The high amount of rainfall period favored increased food production and population explosion beginning around 440 A.D. The study result was published in the journal  “Science.”
Next month. on Dec. 21, marks the end of an era, a time, according to Maya elders, of transition from one world age to another.They say humankind can now make a choice of how to enter the future age, via cataclysmic changes or gradual peace and tranquility.
Given the results of last week’s U.S. election, it would appear that population, at least, voted for the gradual and tranquil transition and compromise as a key to the gradual solution of problems.


Sign up for annual road race set Dec. 2

After four years of success, the Colonos Association of Puerto Aventuras announces its fifth annual 1 – 5 & 10 km. race taking place December 2 starting at the post office kiosk. As usual, all runners are invited to compete for a total purse of 50,000 pesos to be shared by winners. Last year’s race set a record at 500+ runners.

Starting time for categories: 10 km. 7:00 a.m.; 5 km. at 7:15 a.m. 1 km. at 9 a.m. Categories are: 1 km for coed kids (9 to 14) 500 meters for kids 8 and under; 5 km.for junior men and woman (15 to 18); OPEN: men and woman (19 to 39); MASTERS: men or woman (40 and up); 10 KM.- OPEN: men or woman (19 to 39);MASTERS: men or woman (40 to 49);VETERANS: men or woman (50 and up).
COST AND REGISTRATION:$100.00 pesos per person until Saturday December 1 at 16:00 p.m.; register 1) By e-mail to:carrerapuertoaventuras@hotmail.com ; 2) Asociación de Colonos de Puerto Aventuras. Tel 984 873 51-16 y 17. from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Friday.
PACKAGES AND NUMBERS will be distributed at the Colonos office Friday, Nov. 30 from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.; Registration on Sunday will cost $250.00 pesos and only in the categories still available under the 500 person limit for runners. You will receive your number but no gift package.
PRICES AND AWARDS – There will be $50,000.00pesos in total purse for the first, second and third place of each category and special prices from sponsors. There will be gifts for the first resident of P.A. to arrive. For the safety of runners, the race duration will be 1 hr. and 59 minutes and the route will be free of automobile traffic.


Another form of insurance helps Mex economy

Most world leaders have one. Prohibition racketeers in U.S. cities had some too and now it is Mexico’s turn. What is it?

A bulletproof car.
The narco wars have given rise to a Mexican car armoring industry that employs about 5,000 workers who turn out some 3,000 such cars a year. Drug related violence has bumped the rate of the after-market industry’s growth by 8 to 20 percent as it endeavors to keep up with the rate of violence and the resulting demand.
More than 50 companies nationwide generate an aggregate income of around $135 million affixing the armor  at an average cost of between  $35,000 to $100,000 per car.
Want one?

Briefly noted…

Compiled from staff, contributor and media reports
FAMILIAR DOG, the Great Dane, Kita, that residents would see down by the boat landings, has died as the result of swallowing a fish hook and could not be saved. Another report notes a puppy also swallowed a hook down by the marina, but it was safely removed…SNEAKY SNAKE – A crew checking a flight from Cancun at Glasgow Airport in Scotland got a surprise when they found an 18-inch “stowaway” snake under a passenger seat. The Scottish SPCA said the snake either slithered on board at the Cancun Airport or came aboard in passenger luggage. They named the snake “Furtivo” or “sneaky” in English… THE BRITISH ARE COMING  – Gloria Gevara Manzo, federal tourism

secretary,  played the role of a Mexican Paul Revere in announcing that British airlines and tour companies promise more business for the Riviera Maya after she visited London. Virgin Atlantic Airline, for one, plans to increase seats by 50 percent. Add to that the economic optimism following the U.S. election and the Mexican Caribbean can look to a rosy rebound…we hope. ‘INVASION’ of squatters in Playa’s ejido lands is being confronted by local officials who say some 300 individuals, including children, have built makeshift shelters and demand to be legitimized but may be evicted instead. Officials fear the land grab could get out of control. Officials worry that families occupying land under the CFE electric power lines could be in danger of electrocution…GOOD IDEA – Mexico City’s 21M residents generate too much rubbish, so a government incentive is swapping tokens for native grown vegetables in return for recyclables in glass, plastic, paper and aluminum…APPRECIATION AWARDS were given to the Navy and Army by Solidarity Mayor Filiberto Martinez, for helping control the growth of organized criminal activity in the municipality and the state. A future award for the Navy could be in store if no more boats are stolen from Puerto Aventuras…THERE IS ACTIVITY in Playa del Carmen to create a better image for Fifth Avenue by assuring all retailers are permitted and clearing of street vendors who are not. There is recognition that retail overkill could contribute to the downfall of the avenue as a leading tourist attraction. Unlicensed vendors and street musicians nonetheless are crying foul…A HALF TON of cocaine, 292 kilograms of marijuana and more than a thousand small doses of both drugs were seized in various raids by the Navy and police personnel this year in Quintana Roo…HOME PORT AGITATION – There is a quiet battle going on to create a tourist “home port” near Xcaret and Calica pitting Xcaret interests against the hotel industry’s preference for the status quo…A U.S. FAMILY of six people out  in three kayaks were rescued by locals from rough reef waters near Punta Soliman….

Phrase a week … By Gloria Contreras, state certified interpreter

Get ready for the annual road race: “Prepárate para la carrera anual de carretera.”
Anyone interested in learning the language can contact Ms. Contreras by email at Gloria Contreras nanigloria@hotmail.com or Cel: 984-108-3517.
(Ms. Contreras teaches Spanish classes from 3 to 4 p.m. Mondays and Wednesdays at Tiramisu Restaurant and all are welcomed to attend. The fee is $150 pesos per session. Please call her first to make arrangements.

What’s Playing…

See for yourself what’s showing at the local movie houses in Playa del Carmen at the links below.


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