Central Committee on budget set for Monday

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten — The Central Committee of Parliament will meet on Monday at 10:00am to discuss St. Maarten’s budget. Minister of Finance Richard Gibson told the media at Wednesday’s Council of Ministers Meeting that he believes the budget is a good one and he is looking forward to the discussions with parliament.

“The budget is lean and mean, yet I think the budget is realistic,” Minister Gibson said. He said he has also forwarded a copy of the budget to the Financial Supervisory Committee (CFT) in advance so as to expedite the approval process.

The minister stressed that the major task concerning the budget will not be the meetings in parliament and the approval of the budget, but for the various departments and ministries sticking to the budget. He was keen to point out the importance of the country remaining within budget.

“The real task really comes thereafter—to make certain that everyone sticks to the budget and that they don’t exceed their allotments,” he said. The minister is optimistic that the country will be able to exceed its revenue targets which would provide some financial room for extra spending.

But he stressed this extra amount must be earned first before more can be spent.

Meanwhile, Minister Gibson disclosed that 20 million Guilders have been reserved for the end of the budget cycle 2016 to pay down on the SZV and APS debt.

“As you know we have to make good on the deficits from the past and each year 20 million has to be paid down on that debt so this way that has to be paid in 2016 on the debts to APS and SZV,” Gibson said.

Source: 721 news Central Committee on budget set for Monday