BVI News

UPDATE: Health, Education ministries to receive largest percentages of budget

Premier Andrew Fahie

The Ministry of Health & Social Development and the Ministry of Education have been allocated the largest percentages in the 2019 transitional budget.

The budget is more than $400 million; a figure believed to be the territory’s largest ever. It was presented during the Second Sitting of the First Session of the Fourth House of Assembly on Tuesday.

“The bulk of expenditure will be on education and health – two of the most crucial areas in guaranteeing the empowerment of our people,” Premier and Minister of Finance, Andrew Fahie, said in his budget address.

The following is a breakdown of the amounts that each ministry was allocated.

Health

Premier Andrew Fahie said the Ministry of Health & Social Development was allotted 20.9 percent of the budget.

Part of that funding will go towards capital initiatives such as the ongoing work at the Nurse Iris O’Neal Clinic on Virgin Gorda, updating the territory’s health information system, and obtaining accreditation for the Dr D Orlando Smith Hospital (formerly Peebles Hospital).

Education

The Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth Affairs, Fisheries & Agriculture, received 16.7 percent or $12,962,500.

Among projects expected to be undertaken are restoration of the state-owned Elmore Stoutt High School, as well as local basketball courts and restoring the Virgin Gorda-based Bregado Flax Secondary School.

Other portfolios

The Ministry of Natural Resources, Labour & Immigration was allocated $3,230,275 or 4.4 per cent of the development budget.

“This will assist with the continued restoration of our national park structures such as the J.R. O’Neal Botanical Gardens, as well as undertake rehabilitation works at the visitors’ centres throughout the territory,” Premier Fahie said.

He said funding was also set aside to remove and dispose of derelicts ahead of the upcoming hurricane season.

Constitutionally-established departments have been allocated 2.7 percent of the budget. The Governor’s Group is being given 11.5 percent, Premier’s Office is to receive 10 percent while the Ministry of Finance will be given 13.4 percent.

Meanwhile, the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force (RVIPF) received $1,030,500 to supply and install CCTV and other related equipment.

“This is being funded from the $2,571,942 remaining balance of the $5,000,000 Cabinet allocated in 2018 to Her Majesty’s Customs, the Immigration Department and the RVIPF to strengthen their response capabilities,” Fahie said.

Additionally, to provide a safe working environment, the government allocated $1,566,000 to continue the rehabilitation work to police facilities throughout the territory.

“The majority of this work will be carried out by the Recovery and Development Agency, except for the rehabilitation and reconstruction of the Police Headquarters which commenced last year. This project is scheduled to be completed this year,” he further said.

The territory’s Financial Services Institute also received their share of a $400,000 subvention while medical tourism received $2,500,000.

PREVIOUS PUBLISHED ARTICLE

The 2019 budget for the British Virgin Islands has increased by nearly 30 percent compared to the last fiscal year.

Premier and Minister of Finance Andrew Fahie announced the massive budget of $426,112,972 in the House of Assembly on Tuesday, April 2.

That figure is approximately $126,586,806 more than last year.

More to come.

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11 Comments

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  1. Sick says:

    Of you all already….

    Like 1
    Dislike 2
  2. Haha says:

    Thank you! Many people were forced to send their children away to school due to our broken shift system and the lack of focus of fixing the schools after Irma. It makes absolutely no sense why there isn’t more progress over a year and a half after Irma. The only person that is winning in this situation is the owner of the building that houses the High school students. Hopefully the lack of action isn’t just another case of cronyism.

    Like 13
    Dislike 3
    • Nope says:

      ITs a case of the CDB not trusting the former government and making the process of providing the funds as slow as possible to make sure all the t’s are crossed and i’s dotted.

      Like 1
      Dislike 1
  3. @ sick says:

    ha ha get ready for 4 year illness where you might need some spending at the health ministry to make you better…or you rich fresh water and go Fla for you health care? sick of what?

  4. Gandalf says:

    How the h**l does Medical Tourism get $2.5 million? That’s almost 70% of the total Budget the Ministry of Natural Resources got and 1.5 million more than Police. Priorities ………….. ?

    Like 5
    Dislike 2
  5. BuzzBvi says:

    $2.5 Million leaves lots of room to get money into the right hands.Really hoped this had ended with NDP but now we are getting all set up and ready to line a whole new set of pockets.

    Like 6
    Dislike 3
  6. Eagle eye says:

    Its the first time i ever see a leader of a political party win and can’t call his deputy.

    Like 9
    Dislike 6

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