Premier: ‘Throne Speech 2018 And Beyond’

November 15, 2019 | 51 Comments

“‘Throne Speech 2018 and Beyond: Charting a path for the future while challenging the status quo to build a Bermuda that works for everyone,” was the name of the statement Premier David Burt was scheduled to deliver in the House of Assembly today [Nov 15].

However that did not happen, with Speaker Lister ruling that the Premier could not continue with the speech, which came after Opposition Leader Craig Cannonier was ejected from the House after he, and other OBA MPs, repeatedly interjected to complain that the Premier was reading what appeared to be a Throne Speech in “disguise,” and stating they would be unable to offer a reply.

The Premier’s text, as provided, said, “We stand at the dawn of the third decade of this 21st century, facing a unique set of circumstances. Our population has never been older, more in need of comprehensive healthcare, facing an economy that is stubbornly inefficient and vested interests that desire a return to comfortable norms of 40 and 50 years ago.

“These combined issues almost scream in unison a need to challenge the status quo. If we do not change, if we do not change our mindset, if we do not commit to doing things differently, the stark reality I describe will be a new normal so embedded in our daily lives that Bermuda will always be what was and never what can be.

“We must challenge the status quo because our very survival and ultimate growth depend on it. There is no alternative or happy medium that allows us to repackage a 1970s or 80s model, tweaked with a passing reference to technology in an effort to pass it off as something that meets the global challenge that faces jurisdictions like Bermuda.

“This government will use its balance sheet to drive down the cost of borrowing and make the goal of home ownership not only more accessible but more manageable. The mortgage guaranty programme will be implemented in 2020 and this will provide relief to the monthly mortgage burden our people now bear. This single change will save the average family carrying a mortgage $5,000 a year.

“As the consultation phase on the proposed healthcare reform continues, I wish to signal loudly and clearly for the people of Bermuda that any new system for this country will promote better healthcare outcomes, preserve personal choice in healthcare and bring costs in line with benefits provided. People will see value for money and a system that is centered on their care and not on the profits of those who provide legally mandated health insurance.

“This government has made it clear to the proposed new owners of BELCO that no plan or sale that increases costs to the people of Bermuda will secure the approval of this government.

“Bermuda’s system of transport is creaking under the weight of resistance to technology and a reluctance to focus on the core function of efficiently moving people.

“In the first instance there must be a harmonization of permit costs as between taxis and minibuses coupled with smarter regulation that ensures that our taxis and minibuses continue to have work, but allow citizens to help move our visitors when our taxis and minibuses are full during the busy summer season. We cannot succeed in tourism if we cannot get our visitors from point A to B.

“There has been much comment on my encouragement of persons to use their capital to form their own co-operative enterprises including those that can reduce the cost of food to Bermudians. Persons whose mind is stuck in the past decide to bring up old models without realizing that we are in 2019 and not 1979.

“Technology has transformed what can be done when it comes to using collective buying power. The Bermudians who are now in our coding bootcamp won’t need to rent a building to provide cheaper food; they can design an app that will consolidate orders from Bermudians so they can purchase food cooperatively eliminating the middlemen and saving Bermudian families money. Mr. Speaker, that is the difference between thinking for the future and protecting the status quo, on this side of the House we are focused on building the future.

“This government is determined to create the conditions that allow us to preside over a period of transformation where Bermudians are on equal footing with those historic interests that have carried the most weight in any discussion about the direction of this country. The tensions that exist between us will only be eased by greater equality of opportunity and a resultant equality of influence.”

The Premier’s full statement follows below:

Mr. Speaker, in keeping with the undertaking I made publicly towards the end of last month, I am pleased today to make a statement to this Honourable House to update Honourable members and the Country on the progress made to date during this session of the Legislature; while setting out the work to be undertaken by this Government to set a path for Bermuda’s future – a Bermuda working for everyone.

Let me say firstly, Mr. Speaker, that I am grateful for the latitude you have afforded me in the making of this statement and I am similarly grateful to my front-bench colleagues who have deferred their proposed ministerial statements to the next day of meeting.

Mr. Speaker, in furtherance of a theme I sounded in a speech made just next door to this House, I have termed this statement “Throne Speech 2018 and Beyond: Charting a path for the future while challenging the status quo to build a Bermuda that works for everyone”. Honourable Members will no doubt immediately perceive that this narrative runs counter to the norm of Bermudian society where, in varying degrees, we live by a “Where the fates may lead us” approach to much of life.

This must change, Mr. Speaker. The path to the future for Bermuda starts with us challenging the status quo.

We Did Not Prorogue the Legislature

Mr. Speaker, much has been made of the fact that the Legislature was not prorogued and there was no formal Convening of the Legislature or a Speech from the Throne this year. In this determination I can advise Honourable Members and the public that I consulted with and secured the concurrence of the Governor, the President of the Senate and, of course, you, Mr. Speaker.

It is unfortunate that a change such as this has been compared to an erosion of our democracy when, in fact, the opposite is the case. Recent precedents have sought to challenge the decision to prorogue rather than a decision to keep the Legislature in session while continuing to conduct the people’s business.

Mr. Speaker, The Speech from the Throne sets out the objectives for the Government for a session of the Legislature. There is no requirement that the Premier prorogue the Legislature annually, just as there is no limit on the length of time a session of the Legislature may last between elections. The fact is that the 2018 Throne Speech, by any objective measure was one of the most ambitious in recent memory, with 56 separate pledges, many of which were transformative in their nature. Not all of those items could be realistically completed within a 10 month session, so it made sense for the government to skip the ceremony while we kept working.

Mr. Speaker, most of our traditions are inherited from the Westminster system as administered in London. Honourable Members should be interested to know that the historic purpose of prorogation was to allow MPs to return to their constituencies in days before modern transport or technology. As the need for such long breaks has diminished, so have the length of sessions increased. This change is not unique to politics. Many universities have long determined that summer breaks designed to allow students to return home and work the fields or other such labour are equally archaic and, as such, universities now promote degree courses that can be completed in half the usual time, recognizing that the world has changed.

In all likelihood, Mr. Speaker, this House and “the other place” will sit over longer periods in the future…Honourable Members and the public should consider these the new normal. The need for prorogation and a concurrent break from the rigours of debate can be better managed without so strictly being bound to centuries old tradition. However, Mr. Speaker, I can advise Honourable Members that the Legislature will be prorogued in good time for the 400th Anniversary of Bermuda’s Legislature to be observed with full ceremony in November 2020.

Accomplishments in Summary [July 2017 – November 2019]

Mr. Speaker, our system of government has at the root of its accountability model the manifesto, or Platform. This document is put to the people and, on the strength of that Platform and other elements of an election season, the electorate determine who should form the government. That document is augmented throughout a government’s tenure by Speeches from the Throne, Budget Statements in support of the Estimates of Revenue and Expenditure and statements by Ministers that speak to government policy. All of these form a matrix by which performance can be measured and through which can be seen the plans for the period they cover.

I make this contextual reference as part of this statement, Mr. Speaker, to address the criticism often leveled about the lack of a plan. Some may not like the plan this Government has, but to say we have no plan is simply false.

Mr. Speaker, based on those documents and undertakings made since the tremendous mandate of trust from the people of Bermuda secured in July 2017, I can advise Honourable Members and the public that out of the 161 individual pledges made in the Platform, 40% have been fully completed and 38% are in progress. Yes Mr. Speaker, this government has achieved much.

We have invested in people:

  • We have significantly increased investment in Bermudians, with a $15 million cumulative increase in education spending coupled with our College Promise initiative that has seen hundreds of Bermudians gain valuable access to tertiary studies at the Bermuda College;
  • The Attorney General’s Chambers has been made a centre of choice for Bermudian lawyers to complete their pupilage and in some compelling stories of grit and determination men and women have secured their professional designations through a programme championed by this government
  • We have increased our investment in training and development of Bermudians through increased scholarships and more investment in apprenticeships.
  • We have provided coding classes in public schools, coding bootcamps for adults, and Fintech training for hundreds of Bermudians

We have encouraged small business development

  • The expanded BEDC micro-loan programme has created new access to capital for small businesses.
  • There are new payroll tax exemptions for companies with payroll of under $1m/annum
  • The summer entrepreneurship programme is fostering the next generation of businessmen and women
  • The modernization of the liquor license process has made it easier for food service businesses to compete and create opportunities in this sector
  • We ensured the creation of the Bermuda Infrastructure fund, which is supporting new local businesses.

We have cared for the vulnerable and built a strong social platform:

  • We have established the sex offender registry and promoted public safety with notification of the release of offenders
  • A strengthened child safeguarding regime will allow vulnerable witnesses to give evidence in protected surroundings
  • By focusing on the root causes of crime, we have seen a 55% reduction in firearms incidents since 2016.
  • The living wage is on the way to reality to ensure that a worker’s primary wage meets his or her primary needs
  • We have decriminalized the possession of under 7g of cannabis to remove the legal, social and employment stigma often caused by youthful indiscretion.
  • Construction will soon start on two additional buildings at Harbourview Village, providing another opportunity for Bermudians to own their own homes
  • And we kept our pledge to seniors by increasing their pensions by the rate of inflation every year!

We have managed public finances and made our Economy fairer:

  • We delivered the first balanced budget in 17 years.
  • Payroll tax has been reduced for those earning under $96,000 per year, and those making under $48,000 have the lowest payroll tax rate in 23 years!
  • We eliminated the payroll tax loophole which saw many local companies not pay their fair share of taxes. For example Mr. Speaker, there were local companies declaring $1milllion quarterly dividends tax-free. We pledged to make Bermuda fairer and we have delivered.

Mr. Speaker, these represent a summary of those things achieved by this Government in the 28 months since July 2017’s election. Similarly Mr. Speaker, out of the 56 individual pledges that were made in last years’ speech from the throne, 19 pledges are fully complete, with 33 in progress with some of those in progress matters being tabled in this House today and more to come at the next sitting.

These have, in some cases, been hard fought successes but it has been the combined effort of the Cabinet, supported by a connected caucus team, which has created the conditions for these promises to be kept and for the next phase of this Government’s work – to challenge the status quo.

Why Challenge the Status Quo?

Mr. Speaker, the Irish poet George Bernard Shaw said, “ Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.”

We stand at the dawn of the third decade of this 21st century, facing a unique set of circumstances. Our population has never been older, more in need of comprehensive healthcare, facing an economy that is stubbornly inefficient and vested interests that desire a return to comfortable norms of 40 and 50 years ago.

Mr. Speaker, these combined issues almost scream in unison a need to challenge the status quo. If we do not change, if we do not change our mindset, if we do not commit to doing things differently, the stark reality I describe will be a new normal so embedded in our daily lives that Bermuda will always be what was and never what can be.

Mr. Speaker, we must challenge the status quo because our very survival and ultimate growth depend on it. There is no alternative or happy medium that allows us to repackage a 1970s or 80s model, tweaked with a passing reference to technology in an effort to pass it off as something that meets the global challenge that faces jurisdictions like Bermuda.

Mr. Speaker, we must challenge the status quo because the future we build does not belong to us and a failing present means we are building no future for our children.

A Path to the Future

Mr. Speaker, the path to the future must start with enhancing the lives and livelihoods of those who we are counting on to actually build the future. Demographics and social pressures often mean that our policymaking and policy priority is directed to seniors and young people. In the case of the former, we aim to make their golden years productive and for the latter, our goal is to equip a generation with the tools for success.

But Mr. Speaker, there is an almost silent but significant working population in their 20s through to their 50s on whom falls the burden of the present and who we count on to build the future. These men and women are raising and educating their children, pursuing the dream of home ownership, taking the risks of starting a business and doing whatever they can to care for their parents or grandparents in their senior years. There is immense pressure on this group and with such demands on them, a secure future depends on improving their present.

Mr. Speaker, as pledged in the Throne Speech, this government will use its balance sheet to drive down the cost of borrowing and make the goal of home ownership not only more accessible but more manageable. The mortgage guaranty programme will be implemented in 2020 and this will provide relief to the monthly mortgage burden our people now bear. This single change will save the average family carrying a mortgage $5,000 a year.

Mr. Speaker, as the consultation phase on the proposed healthcare reform continues, I wish to signal loudly and clearly for the people of Bermuda that any new system for this country will promote better healthcare outcomes, preserve personal choice in healthcare and bring costs in line with benefits provided. People will see value for money and a system that is centered on their care and not on the profits of those who provide legally mandated health insurance.

Mr. Speaker, this government has made it clear to the proposed new owners of BELCO that no plan or sale that increases costs to the people of Bermuda will secure the approval of this government. Energy costs must go down and with the Integrated Resource Plan recently provided, that goal forms the centerpiece of the new energy framework for Bermuda. To support the transition to renewables outlined in last year’s Throne Speech, the Government in partnership with international companies will set up a Green Energy Fund, to provide capital to deploy solar installations throughout the island. The objective is simple, to provide jobs for solar installers and relief from high energy bills. Bermuda can lead the world in renewable energy adoption and this government will make that a reality.

A Bermuda Working for Everyone

Mr. Speaker, I have sought to identify Bermuda’s disparate groups and the dire need to change the status quo to their benefit. The skill, some might say the paradox, of governing is to govern for all and develop a society that lifts up people and can be measured by both its strategy for growth and expansion as well as how it provides for its most vulnerable.

Mr. Speaker, in addition to properly managing government’s capital projects to promote economic activity and infrastructure enhancement, priority must be given in capital development to those areas of most need and where their completion will have the broadest positive impact on the society.

To that end, Mr. Speaker, the 2020/21 Budget will also signal an end to a decade of austerity. Bermudians of all walks of life have sacrificed over the last decade with spending cuts, service cuts, and tax increases. Now that Bermuda finally has a balanced budget, the first one in 17 years, we will be able to return some of our surplus to taxpayers in the form of tax cuts, while increasing investment in capital projects to support Bermuda’s most vulnerable. This next budget will contain funding support for seniors living, services for the homeless, and a repurposed group home for those of our citizens who have aged out of the Department of Child & Family Services system and who need a managed, residential programme to thrive in Bermuda.

Mr. Speaker, Bermuda’s system of transport is creaking under the weight of resistance to technology and a reluctance to focus on the core function of efficiently moving people. In the first instance there must be a harmonization of permit costs as between taxis and minibuses coupled with smarter regulation that ensures that our taxis and minibuses continue to have work, but allow citizens to help move our visitors when our taxis and minibuses are full during the busy summer season. We cannot succeed in tourism if we cannot get our visitors from point A to B.

Mr. Speaker, Honourable Members will no doubt recall and will have broadly endorsed the slogan “Jobs for Bermudians”. Mr. Speaker, Bermudians need jobs to feed their families, to educate their children and to achieve their economic aspirations. But, Mr. Speaker, I wish more for the people of Bermuda. I want Bermudians to be owners, investors, men and women of financial means and acumen such that they are in position to drive this economy.

Mr. Speaker that is the reason why we will allow persons, if they choose, to access their own savings, just like they are allowed to do in countries like Singapore. Mr. Speaker, persons will tell you that people are being forced to use their savings – or that I am going to decide what to do with their savings, nothing can be further from the truth. If you like your savings where they are right now, then you can leave them there, this Government will not force you to do anything you don’t want to do. But if you have a need and desire to access your savings to put a down payment on a house, or to purchase an asset to start a small business, or to pool your savings with likeminded Bermudians to put together a medium sized business to challenge existing players in the local economy, then I consider it our responsibility to make that a reality. We cannot give people the training, and then not give them the tools; capital is what is needed for many Bermudians to unlock their potential, and we will unlock that capital.

Finally Mr. Speaker, there has been much comment on my encouragement of persons to use their capital to form their own co-operative enterprises including those that can reduce the cost of food to Bermudians. Persons whose mind is stuck in the past decide to bring up old models without realizing that we are in 2019 and not 1979. Mr. Speaker, technology has transformed what can be done when it comes to using collective buying power. The Bermudians who are now in our coding bootcamp won’t need to rent a building to provide cheaper food; they can design an app that will consolidate orders from Bermudians so they can purchase food cooperatively eliminating the middlemen and saving Bermudian families money. Mr. Speaker, that is the difference between thinking for the future and protecting the status quo, on this side of the House we are focused on building the future.

This government is determined to create the conditions that allow us to preside over a period of transformation where Bermudians are on equal footing with those historic interests that have carried the most weight in any discussion about the direction of this country. The tensions that exist between us will only be eased by greater equality of opportunity and a resultant equality of influence.

A Bermuda that works for everyone is one in which that ideal of equality is not seen as radical or outside the mainstream but a legitimate step of growth both economically and socially. This is the toughest change we must usher in. Modern success in the fast paced world of technology innovation has yielded a series of clear examples of how disruptors and those not constrained by the norms that might otherwise apply have made change. Apple’s Steve Jobs put it this way:

“Here’s to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes… the ones who see things differently — they’re not fond of rules… You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can’t do is ignore them because they change things… they push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.”

Conclusion

Mr. Speaker, the initiatives I have outlined previously are by no means an exhaustive list. In the course of this continuing session of the Legislature, Honourable Members and the public can look forward to:

  • Revisions to the Motor Car Act that will reduce regulations and red tape for Public Service Vehicles, truck permits, resale of used vehicles, and vehicle leasing.
  • Legislation to create a Union Deposit Company, a co-operative venture between the Government and Labour Unions, to provide expanded access to lower mortgage rates for Bermudian families.
  • Revisions to the Cost of Living Commission Act that will require grocery stores to electronically share prices of staple goods that will be accessible to all residents.
  • Legislation to pave the way for the promised elimination of single use plastics by 2020.
  • A Consumer Protection Bill that will have the power to regulate the conduct of local banks and insurance companies to ensure that consumers are treated fairly.
  • Legislation that will maintain Bermuda’s leadership position as a domicile of choice for FinTech companies.

Mr. Speaker, more than the initiatives I have outlined in this statement, my intent is to signal a clear need for a change in mindset. We must approach the development of solutions differently. In 2019, if you can dream it, someone can build a technology solution that will make it a reality. Bermuda has nothing to fear from an aggressive trek away from the status quo and a passionate embrace of the opportunities that a future driven by technology will bring. The attributes and core values that have seen us prosper in years gone by remain a strong foundation on which to build the very future we claim to want for our children. Rather than dwell in nostalgia for the past, we must convert that rich history into the fuel that drives the brightest future.

Mr. Speaker, I am confident in our ability to do that and I am certain that we will rise to the challenge issued by the reality of our situation and that we will unite in challenging the status quo….charting a path to the future…towards a Bermuda that works for everyone.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

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Comments (51)

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  1. road rash says:

    increased and new taxes, no new jobs, fintech fail, cost of living increased, new civil servant jobs, lowest ever business confidence, consumer confidence at a five year low … funny how he did not mention those ‘acheivements’.

    and this: This government will use its balance sheet to drive down the cost of borrowing and make the goal of home ownership not only more accessible but more manageable, scares the living daylights out of me.
    How can Government use its balance sheet to do this without increasing taxes or borrowing?

    • wahoo says:

      What is really scary is that he thinks that there are enough of us that will believe in this kind of nonsense. It really is an insult to all of Bermuda. Wake up people there is no enemy.

      • Black Soil says:

        How can Burt challenge the status quo, when he is the status quo? He is doing everything he can to keep the nationalists and revolutionaries placated (so he appeals to their emotions). He is rightly concerned that the extremists in his party will loose patience and form their own party to declare independence and then declare economic war on those with money who are enemies of the PLP …..the same process that Jamaica went through.

    • Joe Bloggs says:

      “How can Government use its balance sheet to do this without increasing taxes or borrowing?”

      By destroying the economy so that “certain” people leave and their homes are sold at bargain prices.

      • Spectator of Ignorance says:

        that sounds like their plan because anywhere they can drive the wedge to divide they do.

  2. myfiveyearoldcoulddobetterthanthis says:

    Is this what the fuss was about? LOL. There is no substance here at all!

    • Tim Johns says:

      That’s true. All I see is an incredibly arrogant premier.

      • Arrogant Premier = lying about Quid Pro Quo plane ride on a wealthy buisness man’s JET, then resigning in shame and then accepting to be a leader again and trying to prove someone is doing wrong with a fire and brimestone preaching style while his horns are still showing.
        LMAO

  3. sandgrownan says:

    What a disingenuous sack

    The PLP are the status quo. They have had 17 years. 17 YEARS!

    We have cared for the vulnerable and built a strong social platform: Well unless, you’re gay of course. If that’s the case, then we don’t care.

    • oba go lay down, sounding like a moral instructor, while doing a pack while you had your turn.
      Lay Down!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • sandgrownan says:

        Don’t like dissent do you?

      • Anbu says:

        Hows about your inept government actually do something u friggin moron. As usual, u have nothing to offer except your schoolyard bully tactics. Make us lay down oj! I dare u to try.

    • hmmm says:

      I have voted for both parties and as a person who flips the plp explained to voters before the election with respect to Gays! Thus they won 25 to 11.

      On the other hand the oba aka UBP dam they didn’t give a rats a$$ about gay rights when in charge with the numbers in the house to vote on change. To be real honest neither party was concerned.

      If your talking about DISINGENUOUS look closely at the the current leader of the oba aka JETGATE who got sacked by his team as Premier of Bermuda. Now you bring him back and expect to win the next election are you that desperate. Can you not find a person who has the respect of many to help your cause!!!!

      • sandgrownan says:

        Go ask DREB about the real Jetgate. Does he cover that in his ghost written alternative history>

      • Anbu says:

        Jetgate cost us absolutely nothing. N-O-T-H-I-N-G! What is your point. U speak of disingenuous? Look up the meaning and u will see a pic of every plp minister to date. Esp the premier. Thought hed do better considering his privileged upbringing

  4. Rocky5 says:

    Just like Trump, each passing day the “status-quo-PLP” prove to all – they’re clueless on governing in a fair, sensible, inclusive, democratic way for all Bermudians.

  5. trufth says:

    Will fancy multi-coloured copies of this be mailed to us at our expense?

  6. Real Deal says:

    “Here’s to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes… the ones who see things differently — they’re not fond of rules… You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can’t do is ignore them because they change things… they push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.”

    This is me. and I Promise. all, will see a big change in Bermuda in the next year and a half. Bermuda will lead and step out in front as long as i am protected and i do trust Burt to protect me because i feel it in him. he intellectually battles the same status quo i will need protection from.

    reading this speech has got me pumped up for greatness. to God be the Glory

  7. Rada Gast says:

    “maintain Bermuda’s leadership position as a domicile of choice for FinTech companies”.

    Um…….

  8. #CLUELESS says:

    Bus schedule.
    You’ve invested in the people. Please explain,other then the Dr.

  9. kevin says:

    Bermuda is heading for the bottom …at least at that point anything becomes an achievement well done and thank you to all who voted for them this mess is on you … we have Bermudians leaving and soon there will be nothing to Govern i’m sure i’m one of those looking into what I need to do to secure residency elsewhere

    • tit Mouse says:

      the only thing this lot of useless self serving clowns can call an achievement is the huge amount of FAILURES they have managed to continue or add too. I for one can’t think of a single positive achievement in the past 2 years

  10. Toadinthehole says:

    Is this it? Oh dear, i am glad there was no throne speech, it would have been awfully disappointing

  11. I sat very intently and listen to our honorable premier deliver his speech, and there are items in his speech that I can agree with, but the most dangerous statements that I heard today is concerning employers and employees,and how employers will have to be tax more for having a majority foreign staff, and less taxes for having a majority Bermudian staff.

    Time and space will not allow me to say how sickening this whole line of his speech sounded to me personally, and I want to say Mr. Premier election day is coming and at present I feel the P.L.P has lost it’s way, no different then the O.B.A/U.B.P bandits.

    To many employees are being taken advantage of and to many reported cases of abuse in the work places, were employers are outright stealing from their employees under your administration, and reported even when you were the then finance minister, and they are stealing by not paying into the pension fund contributions, both government and secondary pensions and in many cases the employers did not even register their staff as their employees with the Government departments as required by law, and a act of fraud has been committed.

    I don’t talk from someones story, I talk facts from my own history, his story, my story, and it is appalling how this P.L.P has not corrected or attempted to correct the wrongs that is going on right on their watch, and then got the nerve to allow us to go through the entire process and still end up short.

    The employers have no issue in paying government when they are caught with their pants down, and I am not talking about employers that have businesses that are struggling to survive, i’m talking about businesses that are flourishing, and still in operation after they have been reported.

    It is sickening that these business owners have not been hurled in front of the courts, under a P.L.P Government in whom the people elected, and it is we the people who have elected you who is being exploited the most, and it is a sad day when this government will bring the issue up when it is convenient to talk about, because of another major establishment that is presently be exposed for the same wrong doing.

    Many will say I am barking up the wrong tree, and that this mess has gone on for years under all government administrations, and it’s not worth the fight, well I beg to differ, voting is something our fore parents fought for, but voting for people that act along the same line as the slave master they claim to want to separate from, is the biggest joke ever.

    I teach my children that your vote has power, but under a corrupt system, your none voting speaks volumes and has far greater power, this is not the old day and the old times, people are sick and tired of being taken advantage of, but today was a reminder that it is the same BS, just under a so called administration that looks like me.

    I am dishearten at how the real Mr. & Mrs Bermuda is being treated, and while I can agree on many things that the O.B.A/U.P.B did to make us want change, I’m sure many are not happy with the change they see, next week is the by-election and I am in constituency 17, my entire household knows were I stand and stand with me.

    I find it very hard to continue to help empower people who are actually, seemingly not got my best interest at heart, to have what is justly do me, and not have to fight for what I have honestly earned, and then sickening more-so to be blacklisted because i choose to stand.

    Mr. Premier don’t tell me what you want to see happen with the employers of this country, until you deal with the thief’s that need to be brought to justice and made an example of, and this goes across the racial divide, you have Black’s just as White employers that are thieves and the facts are recorded.

    So were is the real justice, some of us spent thousands in legal representation, only to find that the system in this regard is very flawed, and we are yet to see your Government bring employers before the courts.

    Much more will be said and I promise to bring those to the fore front on more fronts then you can handle but all within it’s right timing, please check your law book’s, the act of fraud in any sense has no statue of limitations, so no need to race for a quick fix, but justice will come, even if the only justice is, to replace this government administration.

    • Real Deal says:

      there is a time and place for every thing what you are suggesting would not be smart move in the current. we need to investigate why employer do those thing and correct it if it is not fully greed. then once a fix is in place then you can punish the companies if they do they same thing.

    • Mary says:

      OMG this is sooo well written and so very very true.

  12. Eve says:

    There is a need for improved means of transportation to move visitors around the island but opening it up to “citizens” to help when taxis and minibuses are full would create a nightmare in many ways. Is this transportation solution from Zane and BTA?
    The statement contains some socialistic language along with some dictatorial language which should be of concern to all, especially to local and international business. Is an exodus the desired results???

  13. Dunn juice says:

    Ease the guy up, only doing what he’s told..
    #quidproquo

  14. wahoo says:

    Congratulations plp you just canceled a lot of business on Monday now the people will feel the hurt.

  15. Jerry says:

    Used to think this man had potential now I am getting bored with his games and divisiveness, like trump his day will come shame really

  16. saud says:

    Why is this government so racist?

    • tiny tree frog says:

      only way they can maintain power cause they really don’t give a flying fork for ANY bermudian but themselves

    • PANGAEA says:

      Said.
      The Government is the people !
      Why do you paint the Bermudian people with a Broad Brush.
      Why don’t you start naming names ?

    • You fools dont know the meaning of “racist”, which race think they are superior and are prejudiced against another race becouse if the color of their skin and deny people of economic and social status because of the color of their skin?
      Dont get it twisted if a certain race is not in position to economically or socially deny another race from prgressing

    • The ONLY way you can be racist is to be economically and socially in power to think that you are superior to deny another race from progressing.
      If you are not a race thats in that position and you dont like another race then you are prejudice.
      Class is finished!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  17. campervan says:

    Kudos to the government for tackling the single use plastics issue.

  18. Well written, ONION JUICE.
    OBA had their vicious, devilly term.
    YUP!! OBA needs to go swiftly and lie down. Their turn, from 2012 to 2017, has led to severe overcrowding and dangerous congestion on our narrow, windy roads.
    The fact that many strangers came here, set up camp, drive cars and have jobs under the catty OBA, is an indication that they need to lie down.They abused their so-called power for the benefit of INCREASING THEIR NUMBERS. Many who have come here from 2012-2017, would love to have our island for themselves!! No friendliness has come into the island with them…just a mean agenda!!

  19. Question says:

    Do we have to put up with this Bulsh%%?

  20. Toadinthehole says:

    So a proposed budget surplus will not be used to pay down the debt, it will be used for a spending spree.

  21. Red rose says:

    Love all this socialist stuff from a privately educated premier who was afforded lots of privileges. The term champagne socialist springs to mind

    • #CLUELESS says:

      He never mentions he went to private school, nor does he mention the great bit coin anymore.

  22. Control says:

    Vote oba plp doesn’t matter at this point, red blue left right, play this game of illusion if you want

  23. Gustav says:

    proposal to Mr Burt ( in order to satisfy his voters base )
    - kick out all IB with one week notice
    - all “others” have to leave the Island within a week
    - all umemployed real bermudians get a good Job in the CS
    - stop paying interest on the exsisting loans
    - accept only ‘certain’ tourists , the others should go somewere else
    - increase the onion production

    Bermuda will be the heaven on earth

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