Premier Andrew Fahie has scheduled the next budget for the British Virgin Islands to be passed in approximately eight months.
He made the announcement while making his introductory contribution to the 2019 budget debate in the House of Assembly on Thursday.
“The next budget for the territory will pass on December 15, 2019,” he said.
Fiscal budgets are usually passed either in the first or second quarter of the new year. With the Premier’s new plan, budgets will be passed in the fourth/last quarter of the old year.
The Premier, in the meantime, said there will also be changes to the next budget.
“We are going to start it differently – looking at the needs of the people on the ground and putting that money in there and come back until we reach to the technocrats. Not starting through the technocrats and what’s left over we massaged and get it to the people. It cannot work,” Fahie said.
Issues with the current budget
In the meantime, Fahie said he was not totally pleased with the current budget that is being passed in the House.
“We put ‘reserve’ on a lot of funds in the budget because we need some accountability. You cannot have a recurrent budget at $300-plus million and less than 10 percent reaching the people of this territory,” the Premier stated.
He continued: “It means the people of the territory are not feeling the effects of this money that is passing through and that’s why we will start with this new budget early. We have to do more with less, we have to get more money to the people.”
Fahie, who is also Minister of Finance, also said plans for a monitoring system is underway “to make sure we monitor these funds so that some of these funds will not disappear and next thing you cannot get it explained”.
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