December 10, 2018

Cayman Progressives: Finances & Government

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From The Progressives Manifesto 2017

STRONG GOVERNMENT FINANCES
Over the last four years, the , has returned the country to a secure financial position. We did so through economic growth and carefully managing our finances. This has resulted in solid budget surpluses. Surpluses that have been used to fund education, policing, health services, garbage collection, social services, scholarships and other government services. Surpluses that are being used to repay debt, reduce taxes and fees, increase civil service salaries, and build our roads, airports, as well as put in place a solution to fix our landfill needs. And surpluses that have been used to restore cash reserves to help secure our future.

We have done all of this without any increases to government borrowing or taxes on businesses and families. A new Progressives Government will protect the gains made and
will ensure that we continue our strategy of controlling costs, growing revenues, and creating healthy surpluses.

We will also:
• Continue with our debt repayment plans, including repayment of the US$312M ‘bullet bond’ in 2019.
• Maintain sufficient reserves, along with all the legal requirements, to allow government to remain within the requirements of the Public Management and Finance Law.
• Continue to reduce taxes and duties on people and businesses, where practical.

IMPROVING GOVERNANCE
One of the great challenges of modern government in an ever more complex international environment is staying connected to the people who elect us to represent them. Our system as presently structured does not easily facilitate the regular flow of information from the people to their elected representatives.

A new will remedy this by making the necessary amendments to the Advisory District Councils Law to ensure that a District Council is established in each electoral district to enable voters to interface directly with their elected representative.

Each Council will be given an annual budget, for which they will present audited financials, to fix the small irritants in their communities that matter most to them and which may be overlooked by central government or simply take too long to correct. The MLA representing that district will be required to attend quarterly meetings of the Council to address their concerns, advise them of Government’s plans and policies and get feedback from the community. This will provide worthwhile structured interaction between the MLA and his or her electors and strengthen the system of democracy in our islands.

• Implement an Urban Development Commission whose focus will be to improve the quality of life for citizens in designated areas through planning and implementation of development projects, and social infrastructure (housing, community & sports facilities, education, transport etc.) and the delivery of quality services to citizens.
• Continue to implement new e-Government initiatives to provide the public with Government efficient e-Services while ensuring that Government systems are secure and data protected
• Move the work of the Strategic Reforms Implementation Unit into a Government Projects Delivery Unit that will be responsible for ensuring that the prioritized projects in , as well as other key government initiatives, is successfully delivered. The Delivery Unit will operate out of the and will report directly to the Premier and Cabinet.

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