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Feb. 7 meeting will explore new rules


Compiled 1/21/12 from staff and contributor reports
     More information about new regulations concerning the importation and registration of foreign-plated cars continues to tickle in .

Also, area residents are invitedto a Feb. 7 meeting at 9 a.m. in the Kuuch Muuch Kuxtal Room at the Colonos Office above Oxxo. There, they will  get a broader view of the new rules from Samantha Mason, U.S. consular agent in Playa del Carmen, and Mexican Customs Official Lic. Aurea Ma. Munoz Beristain.
In addition, at 11:30 a.m., Solomon Freimuth, a law student and consultant with Calderon & Asociados, will advise on the immigration categories surfacing in 2012, the new documents and rules, important considerations and the validity and status of current documents in  2012.
S. Munoz, the customs official, will discuss vehicle importation procedural changes, duty-free importation and importation of prescription drugs. Consul agent Mason will outline the range of  services offered by her office that includes reporting crime, emergency dispatch, public safety, and proper procedures for handling traffic stops by the police.
Meeting coordinator John Schwandke emphasizes that residents from other villages are also welcome to this continuing, free informative series designed to clarify and simplify life here for foreigners. A banking forum will be held Feb. 27 at the same time and place. More on that later.


Resident Betsey Amy-Vogt has been kind enough to share her recent request for information from the banjercito office “regarding how to renew a vehicle permisso without having to travel to a border.  Now that you have to give a large deposit when you drive a car down, we were concerned with how we would keep the permit valid so that the deposit was not forfeited.”

She received the following reply fromErik Fernandez Carranza.      “Your temporary import permit remains valid as long as you have a valid FM3 Visa.But you have to take some action to keep your deposit alive before your temporary import permit expires.
“Please visit as soon as possible the next SAT (Hacienda) office and request in writing to take note that you have a valid FM3-Visa and that you wish to keep your deposit alive. Present this letter in original and copy now and ask to have the copy sealed as proof of your request presentation in time.
“Together with this letter you have to bring with you in original and copy the following documents: U.S.Passport, FM3-Visa, Vehicle title or registration, Temporary Import Permit document.
“When you present these documents in time at the SAT office, then your permit remains valid and your deposit is not transferred to the Mexican Government. In the future, you have to repeat this procedure each time when you get a renewal for your FM3-Visa.
“Please keep in mind that this must be done each time before the renewed permit expires. If your expiration date has been passed for only one day, then your deposit will be transferred to the Mexican Government without possibility for you to recover it. But your Permit remains valid as long as you have a valid FM3-Visa.
“Please ask a local business owner in your area where a SAT (Hacienda) office is located. They must know it, because each month they have to present a tax declaration to this office. If you have further questions please don’t hesitate to contact us again.”
By the way, we couldn’t find “banjercito” in the dictionary, but Vogt explained, “

Banjercito is the Mexican military bank (yup… the military has a bank!) and it is the bank that accepts payments for all government transactions.  You may not have noticed, but all payments to immigration (for FM3′s, etc) go to Banjercito.  It is also the agency that controls customs payments, hence they oversee the car permits.”



Cenote dives offer hope of anthropological discovery


There is no telling what discovery a diver might make while on a diving experience with “Dive Aventuras” or other dive service provider in view of last November’s find of  11,300-year-old bear fossils in a Merida cenote. (Click on the ‘Dive Aventuras’ icon for more diving information).
Educators from UADY (Autonomous University of the Yucatan) discovered four bear skulls last November in a 45-meter deep cenote in the middle of thriving Merida and plan to return now in hopes of finding more bones to preserve and study for posterity.
The educators say finding more bones could help understand the climate and ecological process from the Pleistocene era ( in which the skulls are dated) and add to the knowledge of how caves and cenotes were formed.

PARK SCHOOLING: Learn art, French, cooking, more

Posted 1/22/12 by Liliana
     Park Schooling is here ! A new option around Puerto. Come and join us to have fun in the park, while learning a new subject. We are trying to put together volunteers teams to keep improving the Community Park.
Our first projects of 2012 are to build a compost area and a vegetable garden, work to improve the demonstrative trail and build the butterfly farm. Do you want to join us?. Coming soon at the park: chats on different topics. And right now, you can choose from any of the following training courses:
COOKING @ LATITUDE 20: This year we will do a tour around the world. We will start with Mexican cooking, following with Caribbean to finish with the exquisites from Hawaii. Keep your ears open for the other stops that we will do around the world. Meeting point: Latitude 20, When: Mondays @ 10AM;Cost: 100 MxP; Started: 23rd of January And continuing on Mondays.
And to make it even better, whatever we learn to cook in the morning, will be the special dish of the evening.

FITNESS CLUB: Keep your body and mind in good shape by attending our classes at the park held at 8:15 a.m.: Tai Chi Ch’uan on Tuesdays and Yoga on Wednesdays and Fridays; Cost 90 MxP. Started Jan. 24.
ART & LANGUAGES CLUB:If you want to keep your mind working while living in Paradise, attend one of our workshops. Art: Wednesdays from 9AM to 12PM @ 200 MxP
French: Tuesdays from 9:30 AM to 11 AM @ 100 MxP; Sculpture: Thursdays from 9AM to 12PM @ 200 MxP; Started Monday, January 9.
KIDS CLUB:If you want your little one to join the “Park Schooling”, here are some options to pick from:  Art: Saturdays from 10AM to 11AM @ 50MxP; French: Mondays from 4PM to 5PM @ 50MxP; Story Telling: Fridays 3PM; Started Jan. 16.
Are you ready to accept the challenge? Each last Saturday of the month, the little ones that have attended each class of the month, will be able to enter the painting competition, in order to win a special prize.


Phrase a week … By Gloria Contreras, state certified interpreter
You want a cookout but need gas for your grille. You might ask: “Donde puedo comprar gas para mi asador?”
(Ms. Contreras teaches Spanish classes from 3 to 4 p.m. basic and 4 to 5 p.m. advanced  Mondays and Wednesdays at Tiramisu Restaurant and all are welcomed to attend. The fee is $150 pesos. Please call her first to make arrangements at 984-108-3517)

What’s Playing…

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


Briefly Noted…

Compiled from staff, contributor and media reports
GONE FOR GOOD? – Several inquirers have asked if the Subway shop just outside the main gate will reopen. As far as can be determined, it is permanently closed. There had been some grumbling about prices and quality of product and service…A DROWNING DEATH presumed accidental in the south channel was reported on Jan. 16. Local marines and security retrieved the body, believed to be that of a boat crew member,when police officials arrived to investigate…NEW MEXICAN MOVIE called “Miss Bala” reportedly captures the narco-syndrome from the perspective of otherwise innocent bystanders. It explores the effect on the national mood since the drug wars began in 2006’s government determination to tackle the problem head-on and the resultant 50,000 estimated homicides therefrom…AKUMAL TRIVIA – We were told this week that the “AK” in AKUMAL means “turtle” and the “umal” means “the place of.”   Like turtles on land, breaking the Mayann code was a slow process…AIRPORT SECURITY dogs sniffed out 16 kilos of cocaine this week being carried in baggage at Cancun International Airport by a woman headed for Rome, Italy, officials reported…PROPOSED ‘DRAGON MART’ that was supposed to be up and running by this March hs yet to sign a permit or put a shovel into the ground. Should it now be called “Dragging Mart”? The Tulum airport plans do not seem to be faring much better. Maybe its the the uncertain world political and economic condition…DOLPHIN STRANDINGS on Cape Cod, Massachusetts, total about 85 in the last few weeks as volunteers work to rescue those that can be rescued. That number is just about how many beach there in a year, puzzling experts…

The End Island with a palm tree   Previous issues below

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