Column: Debt ‘Redline Day’ Three Years Closer

September 9, 2015

[Opinion column written by Larry Burchall]

In early February 2015, months before the Minister for Finance announced the $200 million two year Loan Facility from Butterfield Bank, I wrote that we should not go borrowing again. After all, we had just borrowed $800 million in 2013.

I saw that we had failed to grab control of spending and the future national danger that this presented. Now I see the consequence that has arrived and that should shake and disturb everybody.

Government has a Redline day. What exactly is Redline day? It is the day on which the Bermuda Government reaches the point where it absolutely cannot repay any of the Debt that is due for repayment on that day. Until June 30th 2015, that Redline day was July 20th 2020.

On July 20th 2020, the Government is obligated to repay the $500 million that it borrowed in July 2010. Since it is now impossible for the Government to build up a $500 million surplus between now and 2020, the Government would be forced to re-finance that $500 million. So July 20th 2020 would be the Government’s Redline day.

By not better managing the proceeds of that $800m loan, and consequently being forced, just twenty months later, into taking up this additional $200m two year Loan Facility, the Government has pulled that Redline day three years closer.

Redline day will now arrive on a day in July 2017 – three years earlier.

Redline day arrives three years earlier because by July 2017, when the two year Loan Facility expires, the Government will not have built up sufficient surpluses to repay that freshly borrowed $200 million. Therefore the Government will be forced to start re-financing all Debt three years early in July 2017.

That is bad news. Very bad news. But note that no one is telling you.

What The Overall Chart Displays

The two Tables show the total Debt that the Government owes and the dates on which those Debt obligations are due to be repaid.

Table One shows where the Government stood on 1st June 2015, before taking up the $200m Butterfield Bank two year Loan Facility.

Table Two shows the changed and new position now that the two year $200m Loan Facility has been taken up. Both tables show the annual aggregated interest rate, how the annual interest cost is derived, what that annual interest cost is, and what the annual Sinking Fund contribution is. [FYI – The Sinking Fund is a kind of ‘savings account’ that receives the money that Government is legally required to put aside every year in order to pay-off the Debt.]

Redline:- The Redline section shows the day on which Government reaches the point where it is impossible for Government to repay the Debt that falls due on that day and where, based on current and near-term [out to 2020] revenue and growth projections, Government will be Forced to re-finance or roll-over that Debt and all Debt that falls due thereafter.

obligations table one and two Bermuda septermber 2015

- Larry Burchall

testimonial-divider

20 Most Recent Opinion Columns

Opinion columns reflect the views of the writer, and not those of Bernews Ltd. To submit an Opinion Column/Letter to the Editor, please email info@bernews.com. Bernews welcomes submissions, and while there are no length restrictions, all columns must be signed by the writer’s real name.

-

Share via email

Read More About

Category: All, Business, News

Comments (70)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. watching says:

    And contrary to what many posters will bombard this article with, the decision to borrow these amounts rests entirely with the OBA government. Remember they had a plan? People bought into their plan to fix everything. We are more than half way through their term and we have seen no improvements in the economy. Bob Richards has not been an effective Minister of Finance. Craig Cannonier and Michael Dunkley have been strictly photo op Premiers. We need diversification in the economy. We need to restructure our taxation system. We need to decriminalize marijuana. and we need to look into a small tax on the IB profits as espoused by Charman. We cannot continue to do everything the same and then expect different results.

    • Lala says:

      The alternative was to fire half the civil service.

      • watching says:

        Bob Richards and the OBA said prior to Dec 17, 2012 that they would fix the economy. If firing the civil service was there only option, then they clearly have no clue on how to manage an economy. They clearly sold the public a bag of goods and now that they are in Government haven’t a clue what to do.

        • Politricks says:

          The need to reduce Government salaries and benefits (which consume nearly two thirds of public expenditure) has nothing to do with bettering the economy. That focus is an attempt to fix our public finances which were decimated by the date you noted above. The economy is another inherited problem that has to be addressed.

          In less than a decade (2004 – 2012) government expenditure tripled when compared to government revenue. As a result our national deficit exploded by 2,620% over that same time period. The last PLP budget had a deficit of $408mn!

          Your inability to lay blame at the PLP’s feet for our financial predicament despite the official numbers staring you in the face is quite amusing and a prime example of how our local politics rots the brain.

          This year’s deficit is estimated to be $220mn which means the OBA has reduced their inherited PLP deficit by nearly 50% in 2/3 years. And that is without cutting one civil service job.

          If you expected the OBA to somehow miraculously balance the budget in less than 3 years despite the fact it took 10 years to get to this point is laughable and yet another example of how local politics distorts one’s common sense. So yes it would’ve taken a cull of a large portion of the civil service to achieve the goal of balancing the budget with no extra debt. But you don’t want to hear that.

          The economy recorded it’s first GDP growth in 7 years recently while the retail index has increased for 9/10 months in a row. Facts don’t lie. Things are picking up, whether zealots want to admit it or not.

          • watching says:

            You are aware that to make a blanket severe cut in salaries and benefits will cause financial headache and heartache not just for the workers, but for society as a whole and that any government has to weigh the consequences of this type of action very carefully?

            GDP may be increasing incrementally BUT where are the jobs? that is what people are in need of.

            • Politricks says:

              Of course I am aware of that and nowhere have I advocated for it.

              Obviously the OBA Government knows it, hence why they haven’t done it.

              But let’s remember if you can’t cut the largest expenditure, then the smaller ones (I.e. social programs, infrastructure enhancements, public grants etc.) is the only option. And when that has happened people jump and down and complain about that without giving a thought that such cuts actually saved civil servant jobs!

              I don’t know of any stable jurisdiction in which public/civil servants salaries and benefits eat up well over 50% of total government revenue.

              It’s not the workers’ fault as they didn’t hire themselves. No, instead that blame can once be laid at the feet out self serving politicians practicing pork barrel politics with the civil service. Even Mr. David Burt admitted that the PLP grew the civil service without improving its efficiency.

              But either way cutting jobs aren’t the answer and that is why furloughs were put forward again so as not to have to cut jobs. Check out what Barbados had to do this year (laid of 3,000 civil servants) due to their poor public finances mismanagement.

              All I was pointing out to you was that your dismissal of the PLP’s massive role they played in getting to where we are today regarding our public finances is fanciful and reeks so selfish politricks.

              And let’s not forget that I haven’t even included the billions of dollars which our pensions are underfunded, which the PLP failed to audit between 2004 (?) onwards (as outlined by SAGE).

              I am just sick of hearing about how the OBA had to borrow more simply because they felt like it instead of being borne out of necessity brought on by their predecessors complete mismanagement of our taxpayer dollars.

            • bermyluv says:

              Governments don’t create long-term jobs…but they sure can make them disappear. Without so much debt, government may have been able to provide a sustained stimulus to the local economy. As things stand, we are in pretty deep $%&*.

            • TRUTH says:

              Well written comments @Watching

              Burchall has outlined some real concerns, that we as a people must hold this OBA government accountable. Stop dismissing their actions, and carefully analyze as Burchall has done on the greater impact it will have upon our economy in the long run. The RED LINE is coming soon, and what will we do !!

              What will you say when the “RED LINE” DAY COMES?

              DID YOU HOLD THE OBA GOVERNMENT ACCOUNTABLE OR DID YOU GIVE THEM A FREE PASS?

              This is serious matter, and we must approach it as such, take of the POLITICAL HATS and examine this for what it really is.

              • Build a Better Bermuda says:

                Don’t miss out on the fact that we only have that redline day because of the PLP. That debt deadline is from PLP borrowing not OBA.

                • Johnny says:

                  No matter how much debt the PLP left, the bottom line is that the OBA promised to erase the debt and get Bermuda back in shape. The moment the OBA was elected The PLP was relieved of any responsibility regarding any debt. That responsibility is now the OBA’s.

                  Bottom line is the PLP were voted out because they did not do a good job of running the island. But, the OBA have also not done a good job and have quadrupled the debt left behind by the PLP. I don’t see how anybody can think we are in a better place now than 2-3 years ago, and the OBA’s time is limited.

                  • Silence Do Good says:

                    It is so easy to blame the new captain of the ship for not bailing fast enough and dismiss or forget the previous captain put us aground with massive holes in our bottom.

                    If the new captain makes drastic repairs to holes then you will want the old captain back feeling better for the holes and being run aground.

                    Because of our thinking the political parties will keep doing nothing but bailing and put new holes in our bottom. When we change our thinking about our economy; how do we can get our ship afloat again? Then we will get a reasonable government. Not just a bunch of mud slinging opportunist.

                    Time to start thinking about game changers like immigration, property and a competitive business jurisdictions.

              • BTA and the sail boat race don’t have a problem with money.

      • rhonda says:

        so the oba followed the plp train of thought. if it is acceptable for oba, surely it is acceptable for plp.

        • hmmm says:

          The PLP thought was to borrow even more and then spend even more on non-income generating “infrastructure”.

          Under the PLP we would have likely hit the redline already.

        • Build a Better Bermuda says:

          You miss out on the fact that the OBA is trying to address government expenditures and deficit (the unpopular things that need to be addressed), while the PLP was focused, and still is, on preaching and practicing what sounds popular and only costs more money.

    • Build a Better Bermuda says:

      You are both correct and wrong, the OBA does share some responsibility for having to refinance again in that they have been unable to better down the government expenditure. Much of their plan was predicated on improving our economy earlier and faster… and optimist assumption. But we also cannot dismiss the other parties that have been resistant to government expenditure reductions, the CS and other areas like their attempts to reign in healthcare costs. Minister Richards is not a bad finance minister, he is someone doing the toughest job that we have in government and he has been doing it without thanks and with more foresight, awareness and willingness to do what is necessary (as opposed to what is popular) than any Finance Minister in the last couple decades. Your statement that we still see no signs of recovery in our economy if also false, there are several. We do need economic diversity, however, that is easier talked about than done. Our current economic pillars were built on structures that were laid and have been tended to for decades (though for the last decade and half, the government showed less desire to tend and nature our IB pillar, and more desire to try and exploit it, as would any dramatic shifting to our taxation structure… your referencing to Charman shows a shortsighted goal as you seem to have failed to mention what the rest of his speech included)
      While you decry our current system, you also ignore the fact that it brought this country its greatest success, it was only through governmental failure to adequately maintain, tend to it, that it fell so hard on us. We do need to do something different, but it should be an evolution, not a revolution as that will only break us further down to the detriment of the generations to come.

    • Upset says:

      Larry Burchall has hit the nail on the head and my OBA friends are very impressed. We won the election with a magic fund of $360,000. The OBA know what they are doing. Larry Burchall has been described by them as “The Number Bomber” and guess what….he is giving us the cold facts and I am shaking in my boots. Is any of that $360,000 left to help me and others who are stuck in this sinking ship? Historically the debt is reparations except blacks were to get money and not have money cut from their salaries and pension funds. At the end of the day, the last party put us in debt as a payback and its leaders are laughing at all of us ….Number Bombers and all. Think about it.

    • Earth watch police says:

      Nobody can fix this they looked under the hood engine is gone

  2. TonyC says:

    And we also need to take a long, hard look at how we got into this mess, and hold those accountable for their actions.

    The OBA had pretty much an impossible task handed to them. I doubt there is anyone who could have turned around in two short years what it took 16 to create.

    • mixitup says:

      And they’re OFF!!

      • Mr. Orange says:

        See for yourself “melanin appropriate” types are doing just fine at screwing up their economies…and racking up ungodly amounts of debt.

        This is a very abbreviated list of external debt by nations 2014…
        total public and private debt owed to nonresidents repayable in internationally accepted currencies, goods, or services. These figures are calculated on an exchange rate basis – not in purchasing power parity terms – for clarity.

        US 15.9T
        EU 15.5T
        UK 10.1T
        GER 5.7T
        France 5.2T
        Japan 3.1T

        Hopefully by know you are getting the essence of it all…

        • Zevon says:

          You left out Greece, Spain, Puerto Rico, Brazil, and a bunch of African countries that have had their debt forgiven. Didn’t quite fit your narrative?

        • Earth watch police says:

          Politicians liars thieves and criminals are a scourge on Mother Earth no race is immune

    • Johnny says:

      The task was not handed to them. They begged for it and boldly lied to Bermudians that they would fix the island. In their time they have disenfranchised Bermudians in their own country, and dedicated Bermuda to foriegn interest. Their Bermudian leaders Dunkley, Cannonier, et al, sat silent while their Canadian born leader Fahy went as far to say that there is no such thing as a Bermudian.

      It is clear the OBA has no interest in the well being of most Bermudians.

      • jt says:

        Questions.
        Do you believe the PLP did?
        Do they now?

      • Earth watch police says:

        Plp never told them that the engine is gone they sold it for parts now we have a push car ,let’s get to pushing

  3. BT BHECKER says:

    The OBA,by failing to reduce the public civil service and enter into firm austerity measures have caused this issue. They are still hated by the unions despite not doing anything about it. Complete political and economical failure in this area.

    They were scared of the unions and we will pay the price in 2017 – but then the PLP will be in power and we will all blame them.

    Westminster system does not work for Bermuda.

    • Build a Better Bermuda says:

      So what system works, Westminister, U.S., Communism, Socialism, Nationalism…? Every political system is always going to be at least diametrically challenged.

  4. NCM says:

    Mr. Burchall, please tell us what the possible solutions are to this impending date with disaster. Do we layoff hundreds of civil servants? Do we introduce income tax? Do we slash benefits such as financial assistance, pensions and hospital benefits? Diversifying the economy is fine in practice – but it would likely take years for any impact on Government revenues and therefore ability to pay off debts. What can we do?

    • Mr. Orange says:

      He has no good answer – no one does apparently…

      Debt to GDP at last check according to “Forbes” – an entity I have some pointed reservations with but it seems to be “reputable” as finance news goes…

      Japan 222.7%
      Greece 175%
      Italy 133%
      Porugal 130%
      Singapore 106%
      USA 102%
      Belgium 101%

      You see we are doing nothing that the world has not already tried and failed at. For the MILLIONTH time the answer is to be found with Fiat Currencies issued by private Banking Cartels FCS!

      • Larry Burchall says:

        Mr Orange,

        Over time, in separate columns/opinions, generic solutions have always been given. The sequence always the same.

        Deliver the facts. Provide the analysis. Suggest a solution.

        Personnel costs – Since December 2010, I’ve advocated reducing personnel costs by layered pay cuts. Never suggested ‘laying off’ or firing.

        Ramping up the economy – Since 2012, when the figures became crystal clear – at least to me – add ResPop by adding Business Residents.

        If you do a Bernews search on the five years of my Bernews writing, you can read five year’s worth.

        In this article, I‘ve delivered the facts and analysis about a radically changed Debt deadline. In the near future there will be the last bit of the FAS triad.

        Larry Burchall

      • hmmm says:

        Those countries have natural resources in abundance compared to BDA.

        that metric comparison is great for countries with resources, for us it is guff.

        • jt says:

          Very true. We stand to be worse off. And most aren’t even considering pension under funding…which is massive.

    • Sickofantz says:

      Mr Burchall has answered this question several times by stating that we need to increase the population. We should be out there courting offshore companies in competitive jurisdictions. We should be laying out the red carpet and offering them inducements (as every government does all over the world) to come here and rent our office space, pay payroll tax, bring their high paid executives who will spend in out economy and employ Bermudians. As Mr Burchall said yesterday these people are tourists who spend 365 dAYS A YEAR. Unfortunately I think that many companies may be put off coming because they are scared of an entitled population who frankly don’t give any indication that they want them here! Despite the fact that both parties know this is the only answer there is too much xenophobia on both sides and ALL backgrounds. No company is going to move here while they can read comments like “Watching’s” above which suggests restructuring our tax system.

      • Bullseye says:

        I have spoken to successful expats here and they love Bermuda and can handle the expense, but they have never felt so unwelcome anywhere. That is sad and crazy. The PLP perpetuate this movement of resenting the successful and especially the foreign successful person. It is constant and I wish they would stop.

      • Johnny says:

        the question is do we beg them to come here of do we propose a fair exchange. the reason so many Bermudians are fed up with the OBA is because they always sell us short. Eg. The AC (some of the richest people in the world) approached Bermuda about hosting their race here, yet we didn’t negotiate competitively. We just let them do whatever they want (relaxed all sorts of laws for them so they don’t have to spend much money). Same thing with the new hotel deal. This is our Island, we should negotiate our terms to the benefit of all Bermudians, and if people don’t like it then too bad.

  5. Chris Famous says:

    right in the middle of the AC eh?

    • Mr. Orange says:

      This may or may not be coincidence but by 2017 we will have a lot more to worry about than a sailboat race unfortunately. (Un)rest assured.

      The rats all threaten to leave the sinking ship yet are always found clinging to its timbers whilst adrift at sea…

  6. Hmmm says:

    The biggest problem with the Bermuda economy right now, is Bermudians not really understanding what the consequences are of our present situation.

    I say, let the checks start bouncing. Lets see if the Unions, and the Civil Servants will continue to go to work, when one paycheck is not delivered. What then? Riots? To prove what?

    Make the books balance if it is not possible through fiscal measures. Can’t pay out money that you have not collected. Just like the private sector.

    I am sure that they would blame the current Government some how.

    Bermuda really needs a rebalancing or a complete depression. That way peoples expectations will be lowered, thereby making it possible for the island to rebuild. Probably a lot more efficient, and a lot more affordable, not to just Bermudians but for visitors as well. This might take a generation to recover from. Drastic, yes. But we are still in denial.

    Unions and the Opposition want to disrupt every conceivable idea to rebuild the island. If they hope to be in power in 2017, what is there plan to reverse the current situation? All we here is what the OBA is doing wrong.

    • Mr. Orange says:

      Chip in then and pay your share – some of that nice IB income of yours would go a long way to rising the sinking ship no? Instead you types blame and shame everyone else but are not willing to put the bit in your mouth and contribute…and don’t give me that trickled down effect jive bossman! the wealth spread here and worldwide is the highest on record so that playbook has failed – clearly.

      • Hmmm says:

        Just for your information. I don’t work in IB.

        • Mr. Orange says:

          Solutions then HMMM?…I have at least given examples of why we are no different than other governments in that we are riddled with debt issued by private banks. What are your suggestions other than blaming (and for the most part you are correct) the PLP?

          I am all for an economic correction. I am WELL CAPABLE in the field. Are you HMMM?

          • Hmmm says:

            You forget one thing that might not be unique to Bermuda, but is unique to other countries listed.

            Bermuda does not produce ANYTHING!! Except Black Rum that is exported.

            The government should refinance using local bank money only. Bermudians must invest in bonds issued by the country at 0% interest. Put back in Exchange Controls.

            Keep the existing Airport, put the departure tax up to $200.00 per Bermudian Passenger. Might make enough money to rebuild in 30 years. No tax on Tourists.

            Raise the taxes on all cars over F class by 100%. If you really need that SUV, then you would have to pay.

            Raise tax on junk food by 100%. Cigarettes by 100%. Alcohol by 100%.

            Reduce all Civil Service salaries to pre-1998 levels. Reduce overtime benefits, sick days and vacation days.

            Reduce all MP’s salaries to pre-1998 levels. Anyone remember Jack Sharpe riding to work on his mobylette? No GP cars then.

            No other Government Vehicles. No exceptions. You need to get somewhere on Government business, use your own transportation and get reimbursed at rate of use.

            Reduce Civil Service to pre-1998 levels, not through retirement, through necessity.

            Privatize Works and Engineering. Hire Landscapers to keep up the roads. Annual Contracts not by the hour. Maybe 10 Landscaping companies could handle the whole island. Contracts reviewed by a board annually.

            Use private construction companies to do road work. It will be 1 year shortly, that work has been taking place on the Black Watch roundabout. I know of 1 house that has been built in that time, one that has been completely renovated.

            Remove any concessions put in place for relief of Payroll Tax.

            Change the whole structure of how payroll tax is collected from International Business.

            All children of anyone involved in Politics MUST send their children to Public Schools. No exception. Not allowed to send children to boarding school, or private schools. That would fix the education problem pretty quick. Or it might fix the political problems.

            Just so you know, I am Bermudian. I do not work in IB.

            • hmmm says:

              International Business pay payroll tax, they pay pension contributions, they pay for goods and services, they pay govt fees, they pay scholarships, they sponsor sporting events (which otherwise would not be held), they pay hotels, they pay landlords, they pay audit firms, they pay for insurance, they pay rent, maintenance and utilities, they pay for communications, they contribute vast amounts of money to charities, they pay for shipping, oh and they pay salaries of the large number of employees who spend their money in Bermuda.

            • hmmm says:

              Other hmmm, I like some of your suggestions.

    • Accurate says:

      A ‘re-balancing’ is the only way a tourism based economy will work going forward – this is well known in high finance circles. The big gamble is – can this be achieved without a scorched earth blood letting? Hope is now placed on the early ground breaking of the big tourism infrastructure projects – if we all look busy building something perhaps the re-re-financing wont be as onerous as is anticipated and the glide slope will have been achieved. By the way ‘glide slope’ is also an aviation term for an instrumented landing aide – it’s only relevant when the flight (party?) is over.

  7. Just a matter of time says:

    OBA think they are a Teflon Don Govt. Nothing they have done wrong and are doing wrong will stick as it will always be the PLP’s fault no matter what. Always. But this excuse is running on fumes now. And the voters are losing patience with this Govt and are watching intently. The OBA supporters vilify and name call the PLP and their supporters every which way including the unions etc forgetting that the OBA won the election MARGINALLY and many PLPers stayed at home. Not a smart strategy. Why were they elected if their sole solution is to just blame the PLP because that’s all we hear now. Minister Richards is turning out to be an inept Finance Minister. Period. Maybe Premier Dunkley should do a Cabinet shuffle here. Minister Pamplin is a qualified accountant that is more fitting to be in this Ministry. Give her a shot. Our country is in dire straights right now. The OBA can reduce the deficit if they really really wanted to without asking for the blood of the civil servants as most OBA supporters are licking their lips for. Austerity measures are not the sole answer and that has been proven time and again.

    Some areas of the civil service are suffering ranging from frozen positions to knee jerk early retirement packages. Many ideas and proposals have been put forth to the OBA ranging from Mr. Burchall, to the PLP and the Unions and even from the Civil Servants themselves. Even some solutions from SAGE had some merit. The Waterfront project could have been on its way with real jobs. I have suggested in the past for the Govt to do a similar exercise like SAGE for revenue raising from the public. You’ll be surprised what talent lies within our community who have not been given a chance due to the arrogance of the OBA and their closed door policies. All the OBA comes up with is putting much of our eggs in America’s Cup (they can find the money there), nearly giving away our island through Immigration and giving away a profitable airport that we don’t desperately need at this time. If we can raise the airport departure taxes increasing the revenues significantly for the CCC, why cant’ it be raised and we keep the money ourselves?? Minister Richards, we DON’T need a new airport right now! The solutions are there but they don’t want to listen.

    • Sickofantz says:

      Your are joking about the Waterfront project yeah?

    • Bullseye says:

      . The OBA can reduce the deficit if they really really wanted to without asking for the blood of the civil servants

      Really? How is that? The OBA really wants to desperately so pleased tell me how. We all want to know. Really. Please.

    • Ouch says:

      As someone who travels with a disabled, we do need a new handicapped friendly, airport, like yesterday. Band aids on the current one would be throwing $ we don’t have down the drain.

  8. Vote for Me says:

    Larry’s analyses are getting better.

    The reality is that Bermuda is in a better position than most to refinance its debt, albeit at a higher rate than we currently enjoy.
    The other reality is that the OBA has failed to make the hard economic decisions that will be required for Bermuda’s longterm sustainability.

    There will be the inevitable pain in the Civil Service if the tought decisions are made but better ‘managed pain’ than ‘pain that is forced upon us’.

    One partial solution for Bermuda is a strict reduction in Civil Service levels but built solely on employee retirements. On that basis, when a Civil Servant retires, the absolute number of posts is reduced. In many cases government will have to shift internal employees but that would be part of the preferred managed pain.

    On a more cynical note, we will at some point realise that Minister Richards is a bad mechanic. He ‘looked under the hood’ in 2012 but did not know what he was looking at, let alone how to fix it.

    Problem is, he sold all of us on his ‘mechanic skills’ and we remain afraid of getting a new mechanic!!

    • Bullseye says:

      Blaming Bob based on this analysis is not fair. He can see the problem but he is not allowed to solve it. They are cutting the Civil Service by attrition via retirements etc but it is not enough as the Union contracts of employees do not allow to any flexibility of job criteria. Let’s say you have 3 guys to maintain a room. One guy changes the light bulb. One mops the floor. One cleans the washroom. If one retires under the current system them he must be replaced. Maybe the light bulb guy can do the mop guys job and we move on but NO NO NO says the Union. We need a new contract and new job description and a raise and title and parameters so he does not get put under more such pressure in the future blah blah blah. There will be meetings and untold bills. All because stepping up in duties is not allowed and is even frowned upon by the Union. they have no idea what it is like and has been like the last ten years. It hurts.

  9. where was your industrial action then?….

  10. Real Deal says:

    No body mentioned our pension funds?!!!! Yep, we’re done!

  11. Sickofantz says:

    Does making racist comments make you feel better or superior?

  12. Just a matter of time says:

    @Sickofantz re: Waterfront. Actually no I am not kidding. Merely highlighting an example of obstructionist style politics.

    • Toughchit says:

      So you have no problem with giving away ( you know that privatisation thing you guys apparently abhor) prime BDA public real estate to a unproven developer with unknown sources of financing for almost 300 years?

      The same contract which Corporation insiders noted were issued unde suspicious circumstances in 2012 and confirmed by the Ombudsman report.

      You have no qualms about giving this public land to a so called developer who had $18mn wired to his personal account which resulted in a parking lot being taken over by foreigners (you know the people you guys hate and fear so much)?!

      You’re not really against corruption or holding people accountable or against the parcelin off of BDA taxpayer assets.

      Of course unless they don’t fly the same political flag as you, then all of a sudden you are a patriot that only wants the best for the country.

      You are one funny poster. I find most hypocrites to be absolute comedians tho.

  13. Alvin Williams says:

    It is clear that we should not be building a new airport at this time and worst agree to give away any potential revenue to outside interests for the foreseeable future. This is the finale betrayal of the future of our children; for with with this project the OBA government would have put an economic millstone around the necks of unborn Bermudians; accidental or not?
    Do you really think that the Canadians would be interesting in building an airport in Bermuda if it thought it would not be making anything off it?
    This one the OBA government can not blame on the former PLP government; instead of building a monument to it’s one term of government; it will represent the ultimate sellout of Bermudian national interests if allowed to go ahead.

    • Bullseye says:

      Or we get a great new airport and new gateways and happier tourists and we are not making losses on a decrepit airport we cannot afford to upgrade ourselves on someone elses dime and they then return it to our sole control. I know you know that the PLP had plans for a very grand airport rebuild. Kardashian style. That would have been on the public ticket. In this scenario we face no overruns. Imagine the savings. Imagine the PLP building an airport to rival all and the overruns…. Look for the plans. They exist. It was in the pipeline.

    • Earth watch police says:

      The former government already sold our children plus many generations more so they could have a Beyoncé
      Party .

  14. robert stewart says:

    Debt enslaves but few people understand that. Larry Burchall has done yeoman work in bring to the attention of the public the dire straits in which we find ourselves – thanks to the wowers in Parliament.

    When we figure in the costs of public pensions and medical costs Bermuda is in terrible financial shape. Few understand that.

    The solution is not easy; 1. make redundant about 50% of the public servants, 2. slash pensions by around 40%, and 3. encourage immigration of people who are likely to create future jobs.

    All 3 will be rejected by politicians too stupid or too selfish to understand the havoc they have created over the past 15 or so years.

    “Those whom the Gods would destroy, they first make mad” goes the old Greek aphorism. Our madness was electing financial fools. The ancient Greeks knew something the 21st century Greeks did not know, and neither do Bermudians.

    We are broke, and the way out set forth by the SAGE Commission has been totally ignored. We are mad, alas.

    Robert Stewart.

  15. Jadon says:

    All the PLPs fault for causing the world wide reccession… lol OBA has put us further in Debt ! what a surprise…..

    • Zevon says:

      Here we go. The famous ‘worldwide recession’ myth.

    • Bermyman says:

      Do you understand that we have to borrow money to pay the wages of the people that marched last week?

      We cannot ignore that or we will forever borrow money. That is why the debt is increasing because we do not have billions lying around to just pay off our debt. Money has to be generated through Tax which requires economic activity which will require population growth of a certain calibre of income earner. Something the combined opposition do not want. So they essentially do not want recovery!

      To grow the economy after rapid contraction takes time, or some schools of thought would say that economic correction needs to happen first. Those that blindly continue to vote the PLP in despite the warning signs are the ones who will lose out the most. It is a hard pill to swallow, but it is essentially their own fault.

    • Earth watch police says:

      Ya paying the plp ,s debt.

  16. Huh says:

    I know that the OBA is far from perfect, but seriously, does anyone really think that the PLP could have done a better job since December 2012 managing our economy? Look at the PLP’s handling of our economy/budgets/debts from 2007 – 2012 – they were just unbelievably bad! Sea Bed mining, selling trinkets to cruise passengers etc..

  17. UmJustSaying says:

    All ropes have an end. Without solutions brings us closer to it.