Interim budget coming to LA

| 24/06/2013

(CNS): The new government has issued a notice that it will be holding a session of the Legislative Assembly this Wednesday (26 June), when it is expected to bring a motion asking for the legislature to support its emergency spending package to take the new administration through until the second quarter of the 2013/14 financial year. The notice sent to all members on Friday evening had no motion or bills attached and, given the circumstances, government has not provided the required 21 days notice to other members. However, the email informed all members that the deadline for submitting their motions and questions had been extended to 9:00am on the day of the sitting.

The email noted that the session would begin at 10am but it was expected to run late into the evening.

The previous UDP administration developed a reputation for abusing the protocols of the House, with last minute notices of sittings, failures to circulate bills, motions and other House business prior to the sessions, as well as for starting well after the ten o’clock traditional start time, taking long breaks with the House, then discussing important bills late into the night.

The alleged abuse of the parliament was made most vociferously by the independent member for North Side, Ezzard Miller, and the opposition PPM. Noting the late notice of the session and the failure of government to supply information this week, Miller said, “The more things change, the more they remain the same.”

The government is expected to bring an emergency budget that will differ slightly from the first quarter of 2012/13 but one which will not yet incorporate any of the new government’s policy. Since taking office on 22 May, the new premier, Alden McLaughlin, first had to put together a solid majority government after his PPM won nine out of 18 seats. The other nine were divided up amongst all of the other groups — two independents, three UDP members, one PNA candidate and three Coalition for Cayman candidates.

The new government was immediately faced with two major issues: the first was the pre-G8 meetings in London and the need to satisfy the pressure from the UK for increased tax information sharing and the exposure of beneficial ownership of companies. The new premier led a delegation to London, where he also spoke with the FCO overseas Territories minister Mark Simmonds to lift some of the pressure on the CIG’s current budget restraints.

McLaughlin said he received a favourable response and also confirmed an extension to the CIG overdraft to ensure the government can make it through the first quarter of the new financial year, which is the government’s lowest revenue collection period. No figures have yet been revealed for the overdraft.

During the budget delivery Wednesday, which is expected to be delivered by the new finance minister and economist, Marco Archer, government will also be expected to deliver the unaudited expected results for the financial year end of 2012/13, which was predicted by the former premier and minister of finance, McKeeva Bush, to have a surplus of more than $80 million. However, it is understood that government will probably see a surplus of less than $50 million.

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Category: Politics

Comments (11)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Same $hit different year

  2. Anonymous says:

    This is exactly why the election should be returned to November or the fiscal year changed if the general election remains in May.  

    It is unfair to expect any newly elected government to present a budget within four weeks of being elected.

    • Anonymous says:

      The Civil Service, Ministry CFOs and Chief Officers prepare the government budgets not the elected government so it is not impossible to expect to perform at a level,where the new goverment can hit the ground running. Stop making excuses

      • Anonymous says:

        Yes. And they could have had a budget for the old Ministerial divisions, based on the oldpolicies, prepared at any time requested (in theory). However, since the first thing a new government does is move title around the finance people then need to go back and move money around. Which if you've ever run a large organisation you'll know isn't as simple as it sounds. Most o it can be done easily but its the little stuff, like does the Minister want to travel by 1st class or Premium Economy, that throws the numbers off. Even more so when the Premier gets the UK to change (relax it was reported) their no-borrowing and other requirements. So more changes there again. And if the numbers aren't right you know someone will (rightly) raise that in the LA. So the time lag. Simple solution is to move the budget year so this doesn't happen every four years.

         

        If it happens at the next budget you'll be correct in pillioring them, but this budget is not possible to prepare in advance.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Didn't Alden moan every time Mac did this?