Premier: “This Is The People’s Business”

February 23, 2014

The most important accomplishment with the Budget presented on Friday by Finance Minister E.T. [Bob] Richards is that it sets the Island on the road to recovery”, said Premier Craig Cannonier.

“It gives Bermuda the chance to make amends for the years when indiscipline ruled the public purse, endangering our future.

“Our goal was to break with that past and set the Island on a course toward sustainability, whereby we start paying down the debt, rein in the cost of government and live within our means.

“But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. We have a long way to go. We are not out of the woods, not by a long shot.

“The Budget starts us moving in the right direction, but much remains to be done and, as Mr. Richards said, there are dangers everywhere.

“We are still living with a mountain of debt – costing us some $113 million a year in interest payments. As a Government, we are still spending way more than we take in. This year we aim to cut the deficit by nearly 20%, but we’re still projecting to spend $267 million more than we take in. And economic recovery both here and abroad is uncertain.

“I see four keys to Bermuda’s recovery in the years to come.

“First, we have to remain disciplined. The distance we must go to pay down the debt – one of the big challenges of our generation – will take years. We cannot let up in our commitment to getting the Island back on solid footing.

“Second, we have to grow the economy. That means attracting new investment to our shores, as we’ve done throughout our history. As Mr. Richards said, the Government’s ability to support the economy through stimulus spending is “tapped out”. So to grow the jobs our people need, we’re going to have to attract job-creating investments from overseas, for new hotels and for infrastructure development such as for a new airport and causeway.

“Third, we have to care for our people. This is a big challenge given the fact that we face such serious financial challenges. And on this point, I am very happy that the Budget stuck a careful balance between the need to get spending under control and meet our debt obligations and the need to meet people’s needs, whether it be in the pledge of no government lay-offs this year, no new taxes and continuing social support programmes.

“Fourth, we have to work better together. We have to set aside differences that keep us apart as a people. And the way to do that is to understand that we’re working for Bermuda, for our home, which is in trouble. We have to recognize what is at stake, and that the opportunity before us is more than just recovery.

“It’s our future.”

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  1. Kangoocar says:

    Well said, Premier Cannonier!! Unfortanetly, there is way to many miss informed flock on these blogs to understand what you just said, but just ignore them being when you add them all together and do remember there are multiple plp names under more than one name posting!! It probably amounts to 10 trouble makers??? Just carry on with the people’s business and get our financial house in order !!! The alternative ( plp ) is a scary thought!!!!!

    • js says:

      he needs all the encouragement he can get

    • Darth Oba says:

      My guess is you never sat in the OBA/UBP room. Why do real think they placed Craig in that spot? Why because he’s smarter then Grant Gibbons, Bob Richards or the Milk Man lolololol yea ok. Stop being an A$$ and keep it real. A win is a win but I don’t see it working next time. You better come across the fence and look what people are saying now days. You really thinks whites put the OBA in power. Whites have always voted one way. The black swing voters are the ones that decide who win and who takes a back seat. Do you realize how many black Bermudians didn’t vote last election because they were upset at the PLP failure. Lets not talk about the OBA/UBP who they didn’t trust and still don’t trust. The trust is getting worst not better. You better take off the blinders that the PLP had on when driving Bermuda’s road and wake up OBA.

      • Srsly? says:

        Hmmm… Does anyone really care about white/black on this island any more? I feel like it’s only relics who can’t accept that new generations would like to get on with a better life.

        • Frank says:

          That is the. Problem. Race. In. This. Country. Has never. Been. Dealt. With
          when. The. Ubp/oba secret. Report. Came. Out some said. It. Was not. True.
          Why do. You. Think. We. Have. A. Premier. That is. Unqualified. For. The. Job.
          Also. Take. A. Look at. The. Cabinet
          the. Old. Ubp. Gang. Back. In. Pllace
          plus. 2 black people

        • A society that has more justice is a society that needs less charity”
          Ralph Nader, an activist, author, speaker and an attorney (B. 1934)

    • street talk says:

      you better have a MJ and relax you sound stressed Kangoocar

    • What Jobs jobs jobs? says:

      You sound like a person who has a job. Let’s see if you would say that if you were told you no longer have a job tomorrow and lets say you can’t find one for months and there are multiple foreigners in the position you have your degree in…dumb a$$. In fact all you OBA followers would be singing a different song if this was your situation.who feels it knows it.

      • Sandy Bottom says:

        More Bermudians were thrown out of work under the PLP than in history. That’s what the current government is turning around.

      • Kangoocar says:

        If you don’t have a job, why don’t you stop blaming the wrong party, the plp put the policies in place that chased the IB sector out of here, the moment they raised the payroll tax after they were told not too, the IB sector started to leave in droves and along with it your jobs!! When it comes to the multiple foreigners you claim that is taking jobs from you, ever thought they were brought in for a contracted time period??? You just can’t come along and tell them to leave tomorrow!!! Again the plp brought in more foreigners than anyone else!! I still find it strange that if you have these degrees and foreigners have your job, may I suggest you look within yourself to possibly find the answer ?

      • WillSee says:

        Welcome to the real world.
        Where were you when private sector employment declined by 4000 jobs.
        Your fellow bermudians

    • X man says:

      Very True !
      Now we must stop this War between both Political Partys and get Bermuda back on it’s feet. – all the
      back and forth bad talk and other senseless Politicing means that we have lost focus – and both political
      partys must focus on recovery not attacks on each other.

  2. Bum Yujan says:

    By telling us what our business is you’re inadvertently telling us what our business is not. That is very arrogant and insulting of you to get on a plane and have meetings with some guy with your private business manager then tell us it’s none of our business. WOW!
    Don’t tell us what our business is PCC. It’s our job to tell YOU what the people’s business is. The audacity!

  3. dafaq says:

    well said, but im a sorry mr. premier time for talking is over. we do not need no more lip service. time for you guys to do what you said you was going to do. pass what laws are needed and get on with it!!!

    • Unbelievebale says:

      They are trying. What with the PLP throwing around accusations and the BIU trying to disrupt just about everything in Bermuda, the OBA has their hands full with a lot of nonsense.

      If you want to see what the Govt is trying to do, don’t bother with these blogs and actually ask them. Lots is getting done. You just have to pay a little attention.

      • What Jobs jobs jobs? says:

        Yup lots of Tax payers money is going to waste. Gov workers taking a cut in pay and Mr. Crockwell spending it on trips. Go for it bye…he knows he shouldn’t be leaving this island in the first place and it’s a matter of time before his purse strings and his positon are cut so keep spending our money while you can cus it’s coming to an end soon. I will never vote OBA again…what was I thinking. Well you live and learn.

        • Balls says:

          @ Jobs jobs jobs
          How have you made it this far in life being THAT stupid?

  4. Coffee says:

    And economic recovery both here and abroad is uncertain. According to E.T. , the rest of the world had recovered economically , and it was / is only Bermuda under the PLP that was in fiscal hardship . I’m delighted that E.T. Has had the opportunity to look under our hood and more importantly under the hood of other financially distressed jurisdictions as we’ll . On another note , does this guy Cannonier have even one original thought ? Well I can only guess that works for his grateful dead followers.

  5. swing voter says:

    jus keep moving us forward, build a couple off hotels & create those jobs, keep IB happy and privatize the troublesome departments…I’ll be happy to vote OBA in 4yrs

  6. bluebird says:

    Don’t forget the PLP Demagogues.

  7. All Talk says:

    Premier – want to save some money?

    1) Stop Travelling all the time.
    2) Fire the people who write these useless statements
    3) Move back into your house and rent Clifton

    Just saved you a million bucks!

    • 32n64w says:

      Agreed. Just think of the hundred million or more that could have been saved had the PLP actually done this first!

      • Tommy Chong says:

        Have you ever heard the phrase, “two wrongs don’t make a right”?

        • Impressive says:

          Tommy Chong,, no you know better than that,, lets not bring common sense and logical thinking into the conversation. ;-)

  8. somuchless says:

    BOB for Premier.

  9. Coffee says:

    IAnd economic recovery both here and abroad is uncertain. According to E.T. , the rest of the world had recovered economically , and it was / is only Bermuda under the PLP that was in fiscal hardship . I’m delighted that E.T. Has had the opportunity to look under our hood and more importantly under the hood of other financially distressed jurisdictions as we’ll . On another note , does Premier Cannonier have even one original thought ?

  10. Valirie Marcia Akinstall says:

    First, let me say that this statement is both well written and has its finger precisely on the financial pulse of Bermuda.

    If the premier wrote it himself, well done. However, if it was written by his speech writer (or ghost writer) then s/he is very clever to have broken it down into laymen’s terms so that the man on the street can very easily understand it, without it being long winded and confusing.

    Observation; thank God the budget statement came on the heels of the premier’s legal wrangles. Bob Richards has saved the premier the nightmare of having to face the media questions yet to be answered.

    But your coded message, ‘indiscipline” refers to the PLP without naming the PLP. You do not mention them by name but you continue to take swipes at them. However, from your four key areas of recovery, two are highly speculative due to your recent legal woes.

    First, our need to attract foreign investment to Bermuda will grind to a virtual halt as international investors know not whether a referendum will go to a vote or it will be circumvented by legislation. Thus, the Court ruling on this matter is paramount to moving Bermuda forward as investors will not invest without transparency on the referendum – what will happen on this matter? And, Bermudians may take to the streets, IF, the Government proceeds with legislation without transparency on the odious allegations whirling around the failure to go to referendum.

    Second, Bermuda does need to work together as a finely tuned engine of productivity working for ONE common aim – inclusion, progress and prosperity for ALL. So, the emotive issues that have now become legal issues demonstrate that obstacles to progress could be sitting in the House of Parliament, not in the streets of Bermuda.

    Mr premier, the work of Bob Richards clearly demonstrates that your Government operates efficiently and effectively with or without you at the helm. Likewise, the Opposition should have contingency measures in place if the opposition leader should step down. You have taken us to the brink, gentlemen, but what EFB has taught Bermuda is that we can swiftly move parliamentary overspills and acute differences in the Courts to be adjudicated – democracy has not failed us.

    London, England

  11. Bermuda123 says:

    Whoever is Premier, it is the team that dos the work, not just the Captain. The best teams have a mix of skills. Stop this distraction about “who should be Premier”. If we don’t fix the economy, no one will want the job in 4 years.

  12. watching says:

    Until Mr Premier actually holds a press conference where he takes questions from reporters, and answers unscripted questions, or participates wholly and freely, then none of these press releases mean jack crap.