BDA: Budget Debate Outstanding Queries

February 25, 2011

The Bermuda Democratic Alliance Financial Affairs spokesman Michael Fahy released a statement saying “The BDA will be hoping for clarification on the following points and queries, among many others, during the budget debates.”

  • 1. The reason for the payroll tax rise last year, given what seem to be contradictory statements given by the Premier on why it was raised in the first place.
  • 2. How a real “savings” is being made in respect of cutting $60million on capital projects – which is like saying I was going to buy a $1million home this year but I am not now, so I saved $1million.
  • 3. The realistic chances of actually meeting the revenue target for the next fiscal year given the Government’s failure this year to be even close to their revenue projections.
  • 4. What are Government Ministers doing to lead by example given the cut backs?
  • 5. How the three Ministries that are dealing with the economy are working together to increase business opportunities for locals, attract foreign investment, increase tourism and reduce debt.
  • 6. Why the Government believes that they are a new administration when all that has really happened is a shuffling of the Cabinet deck with virtually the same people trying to fix the debt problems for which they are collectively responsible.
  • 7. Given that virtually every Minister that has spoken so far has said that the cutbacks won’t adversely affect the services being provided, why was so much money being spent in previous years.
  • 8. What tangible information does the Government have that suggests the re/insurance sector will turn around and boost the economy next year?
  • 9. Whether or not there have been cutbacks in real terms given that the Minister of Finance previously was asking for departments to cut back by 15%.
  • 10. How the Minister of Finance can justify the moving of the Bank of Butterfield guarantee off the balance sheet to stay within the statutory debt ceiling.
  • 11. Who will be held accountable if budgets are exceeded?
  • 12. Given the Middle East turmoil and rising commodities, is the Government ready for the inflation that will result given the Premier’s very optimistic outlook in the budget statement about Bermuda’s economic recovery?

“There are a number of areas where we have serious concerns in individual departments which we will raise more substantively in due course.”

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Comments (11)

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  1. Twelve good points says:

    I can’t say I’ve ever agreed with much Michael Fahy has had to say in the past but he is spot on in this. The Cog could also learn from the “to-the-point” method of communications. Well said Mr Fahy and the BDA.

  2. Rockfish #2 says:

    Why is it that Minister Minors can perform her very important tasks on a part time basis, while other Ministers with very little to do except drive around in taxpayers cars taking children to and from school, attend family and friends weddings/funerals and other unofficial functions, are paid on a full time basis. Butterfield, Blakeney,are the most obvious, but there are others! Furthermore, does the Speaker really need a GP vehicle? These elite people should all be part time with a 10 percent salary decrease. Why should they be exempt from the pain that affects the majority of Bermudians?
    That money should be used to feed our children who attend school without breakfast, instead of the public being asked to contribute.

  3. Black Soil says:

    Pigs will fly before the PLP lead by example. The PLP MP’s and senators view themselves as royalty.

  4. Chart says:

    The BDA wants to be the Opposition. But compare their “abridged” response to the Budget to the detailed response delivered by the UBP … and judge for yourself who’s more competent.

    • Bermyman says:

      I think both are competent, but do the majority of voters care about competence, do they even understand half of what is said by the opposition? I doubt it! The UBP will never be in power because they can never shed their legacy which has been so heavily demonized over the past decade. My two cents is that Bermuda is too small for Party Politics and that it contributes to squabbling but not very positive progress for the people. I think all MP’s should be elected as independents and therefore are ultimately responsible for their constituents. Leader also elected by the people and Cabinet chosen by the leader. The result would be a more balanced government, most likely less racism issues and better accountability to the people. But this will never happen, heads would need to roll beforehand. As we fully well know, no one in Bermuda gets fired for doing a bad job, not even bus drivers..

    • Scott says:

      “…. which we will raise more substantively in due course.”

      in case you missed it

    • Black Soil says:

      If competency was a factor, the PLP would have been voted out long ago. It’s about electability, and the UBP don’t have a snowballs chance of ever winning any general election. For what it’s worth, the UBP might as well call themselves the KKK. The UBP need to put this island out of its misery and Disband.

  5. Scott says:

    to be honest Chart, there is no point is being too detailed.. the numbers get lost in people’s heads and bore them.

    as stated, the point of this is “The BDA will be hoping for clarification on the following points and queries”… no point making a paragraph long question about what if this and what if that. .. these are just outstanding points to be discussed.

  6. Jim Bean says:

    Hey Chart – I don;t think this is thier “reply”. FYI the Official Opposition gets to read their Official Reply statement in full since they are the Official Opposition. The BDA MP’s can only talk to the budget and may only refer to notes without reading them. Beautiful system we have here.

  7. Winnie says:

    Just wanted to know when did the BDA get MPs, hmmmmm tell them all do the RIGHT thing. Men of honor and principle I think not. Let the voters decide which colour you wear in the Honourable House.

    • Robert Bryce says:

      Winnie, so you would also agree that the “PLP” MPs who deserted the UBP to join the PLP should also show honor and principle? If I recall the PLP made a big deal of the switch. Don’t critize the BDA unless you also take the same position on your MPs