UK official to review PMFL

| 02/02/2011

(CNS): The law which governs the country’s public finances is to be reviewed by an official from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), the governor has revealed. Keith Luck, who is expected to arrive in the Cayman Islands shortly, will be examining the Public Management and Finance Law and the systems that underpin government personnel and financial management. At a press briefing on Tuesday morning Duncan Taylor said it was clear that the financial system was not operating properly and Luck would be seeking ways to improve the situation. The governor denied that it was a skills issue that was causing the country’s financial management problems but felt it was the cumbersome nature of the PMFL.

A release from the Premier’s Office in the wake of the briefing said that Luck had recently completed a four-year contract as director general, finance in the FCO and would be employed by the CIG as a consultant while he carried out the review. “The Foreign and Commonwealth Office contracted him to reform their financial and corporate systems,” the premier’s office stated, adding that he is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants.

Luck’s review will focus on the mechanisms that underpin the financial and human resources management model as well as the law itself and the regulations. The UK official will also examine the Integrated Resource Information System (IRIS), which is the Oracle based system that runs all of government’s financial and human resource transactions. During his time here Luck is expected to meet with government officials and private sector organisations and he will report to Cabinet on an ongoing basis.

Governor Duncan Taylor, who was reviewing his first year in office, also stated that, along with the auditor general, Luck would be examining the procurement process, which has also come in for criticisms recently, in relation to issues of good governance. The process has been by criticised by the premier who says it is bureaucratic and presents stumbling blocks to his government’s plans to kick start the economy, while the wider public have raised questions about the vulnerability of the system and a lack of real transparency.

The governor said that a review by the AG had found nothing untoward regarding the CCTV tendering process and that the government would soon be making an announcement about the loan.

Taylor said he did not believe the shortage of skills, which has been cited by government officials as one of the reason why it cannot produceits accounts as required under the law, was not the problem as “we have some good accountants” in the public sector, he said, but it was the cumbersome nature of the system that was to blame.

He said he believed that once the excessive burden of the workload was reduced it would be revealed that there were sufficient skills, but if not then those skill gaps could be addressed once the system was simplified.

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  1. Bean Counter says:

    Dear Mr. Luck,

    Believe nothing that is not audited.

    Question every contract that has not gone through a transparent tendering process and follow the money in the more opaque deals.

    We live a country where third parties offer the Premier and his political hangers-on free trips in private jets and the Premier laughs when he is asked to identify who was funding these freebies.

    If in doubt, assume the worst.  Because it is probably even worse than that.



  2. Anonymous says:

    We all know that a lack of skills and a lack of will is the major problem. There is nothing complicated it.

  3. Scrooge McDuck says:

    It is likely Mr. Luck is also an auditor in disguise, because like the previous AG, and the present one, and everyone else, the FCO can’t find out anything about CIG finances.

    "The money?  We left the money right here and now it’s gone."

    "It was just too complicated all those numbers and zeros."

    "We need outside help."

    Well now you’ve got it!!!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Can anyone tell me if the "Nation Building" fund of $5 M was set up?

    And if it was what expenditure has been made from it? Hmmmm


    • Just thinking says:

       Absolutely! It was set up but since these nit wits can’t seem to produce a simple set of accounts, chances of being able to find out how it was spent anytime soon is none to slim. 

      Someone told me they do have appropriation schedules, I wonder if we can request these as an FOI? 

      It is atrocious that each year there is big budget document produced which is available on but the tax payers of this country cannot find out if  they were spent and if so how the funds were spent? What are we paying for people? 

    • Kung Fu Iguana says:

      Steve McField did get his shiny new badge.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Do we have a law like this? See today’s Jamaica Gleaner - “The special prosecutor would also have the power to investigate and prosecute cases of corruption.

    If the bill is approved by Parliament, parliamentarians, police and other public officials found guilty of unlawful enrichment could face long prison sentences and hefty fines.

    The bill proposes that a public official found guilty of such crimes may be fined up to $5 million, or sentenced to a maximum five years if the hearing is held in a Resident Magistrate’s (RM) court. If the conviction takes place at the level of the Circuit Court, the person may be imprisoned for a term not exceeding 10 years.

    Persons who directly or indirectly engage in corrupt offences could be fined up to $1 million and/or two years’ imprisonment in an RM court. Similarly, public officials who offer or promise an advantage to foreign companies or officials may be fined up to $2 million, or sentenced to two years’ imprisonment in an RM court.”

  6. Anonymous says:

    "The governor said that a review by the AG had found nothing untoward regarding the CCTV tendering process "XXXX  I’m going to FOI the Auditor General report on this, give it to CNS to post and let the public judge for themselves if anything "untoward" happened. XXXX Judge for yourself when I post it.

  7. Anonymous says:

    With any Luck this problem of public finance records and processes willbe resolved.

  8. slowpoke says:

    This is simply a way to make it appear "objective", and prevent the current AG and his staff from getting fired, for providing the same opinion. 

    In spite of his insistence, HE does know that HR is an issue (“we have some good accountants”).  That said, the PMFL is a disaster for Cayman and has to be changed. 

  9. Michel Lemay says:

    A few days ago the Governor said it was up to Cabinets and others in the house regarding the different portofolios getting our audits on time and did not think it was His responsability. Now we have a Mr. Luck coming to Cayman to work alongside the Auditor General. No one answered me when I asked what is the Financial Secretary suppose to do ? Yes the same one who gave the PPM one version while in power and then the UDP another when they took over. And excuse my ignorance but he is still there, doing what ? I hope i’m wrong on all of this.

  10. hmmmmm!!! says:

    I wonder if this simply isnt a fact finding exercise designed to give credability to a move by the UK to take over managing the affairs of the Cayman Islands.

    It is a bit odd to say the least that the UK would take it upon themselves to “fix” or at least document these PMFL issues for us.

    Yes he is being paid, but dont we have the local resources to do this ourselves? and doesn’t the premier have the powers to implement the changes if needed ?

    • Anonymous says:

      I think he will have to determine if we have the resources ourselves and if we do, where is the problem?  The complete ineptitude that many government departments show year after year at simply producing accounts to show where our money goes is a major cause for concern and needs to be looked into.

    • Anonymous says:

       Dear hmmmmmmmm!!!  You’re a genius.  Of course this is a set up by the UK to take over governance of Cayman. This has been going on in other UK territories aswell. Look at what is happening in Anguilla and Turks and Caicos.  We are ignorant beyond belief for entertaining the notion for one moment that the UK aims to assist us in any way or to be of service.   We need to fix these problems as a nation and not turn over power to the UK who means to undermine our self determination.  Do not fall for this trick.  Please read about all of the self governing territories falling to the UK assertions that they are bringing "good governance". 

  11. Libertarian says:

    People may disagree

    But I think the key word in amending or changing the Public Management and Finance Law, is found in the last word of this said article, “simplified.”

    For this small island, we don’t need a hundred financial laws or measures just to make one thing happen! Let us get to the point! Too much unnecessary, vexatious, and petty laws and measures in the Cayman Islands that IS hurting the economy! We need to differentiate what is “essential” and what isn’t!

    “Simplified” is the key word! Even a democracy that has too many laws than people, end up oppressing the people in the end, because they are unable to be free to make a decent living and personal growth! People create more, innovate more, and develop the country as a whole more only in an atmosphere where there is freedom!

    There should only be laws for ESSENTIALS MATTERS!

    • Chris Johnson says:

      Surely between the Auditor General and the Financial Secretary they can sort out thre reporting requirements necessary for our Island. What is so complex?

      • Maynard Keynes says:

        Good question Mr Johnson. You will never get an answer. The Governor has already decided what the problem is – and it’s not our accountants!! Hilarious. Ask Kurt about Ken and Sonia and their assessment of the financial situation.

        So the Governor brings in Mr Luck the expert and tells him what’s wrong……………..and presumably what needs to be done. Happy holiday Mr Luck.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Good Luck!

  13. Anonymous says:

    Nobody knows anything about our gov’t finances and now we’re going to rely on luck?

  14. Subway Cookie says:

    For argument’s sake, lets imagine he carries out a review and concludes or rather states the obvious that laws have been broken and systems are not operating properly…then what? What’s the consequence or recourse? Who will burn for it?

    *sigh* moving on…..

    p.s.just call it what it is, paid holiday from winter climate.


    • Anonymous says:

      Subway cookie, Agree. but maybe the one or oneswho should ‘burn’ for this irresponsible ‘reform’ are long gone. A failure of gigantic pro portions.

    • Anonymous says:

      Then what, you ask?  The UK has license to come in and recolonise Cayman.  That’s what they are after in the long run.  If they wanted to assist us, then they obviously would let the cabinet heads reform it and the UK would review and approve (or not).  But no, sadly this about a means to an end to take Cayman from the people.  This is the truth.