September 19, 2020

Budget day is Wednesday

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The governor has officially proclaimed the start of the new legislative budget session and the speaker has told members of the legislative Assembly (LA) the State Opening and Budget Meeting will start at 10am on Wednesday 27 June.

It is unlikely the full budget will be presented by Premier McKeeva Bush and will most likely be an emergency request for cash so that government can pay bills and wages. This will require passing legislation for emergency appropriations, as it is unlikely the UK will approve the budget as they have said there was to be no more borrowing. Mr. Bush has requested $40 million borrowing (estimated) as well as a short term overdraft facility.

The governor will be able to deliver the annual Throne Speech.

It will be interesting whom the premier will blame this time for the delay in what quite frankly is deplorable. The Cayman Islands Budget should have been submitted to the UK three weeks before he planned to present the document to the LA. The timeline is chiseled out in stone in the Financial Framework Agreement that Bush signed with the Oversees Territories Minister, Henry Bellingham, last year.

Mr. Bush has made it almost a policy to deliver his budget late and even changed the Public Management and Finance Law to remove the original April deadline that gave him even more time. But time has still almost run out. There is no time to get everything passed before deadline midnight 30th June.

 

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