Video: OBA Press Conference On Budget

February 16, 2024 | 9 Comments

[Updated] Opposition Leader Jarion Richardson is holding a press conference to provide an initial reaction to the 2024 Budget, which was delivered in the House of Assembly today [Feb 16]. You can read a full copy of the 2024 Budget speech here, view all our coverage of the 2024 Budget here, and view our live updates here.

Update: Mr Richardson’s full comments:

Buddhist leader Atisa once said: “The greatest wisdom is seeing through appearances”.

The PLP Government would love for the people of Bermuda to believe this year’s Budget is one which will solve many of the Island’s economic problems, but the fact of the matter is, it will not. David Burt even said today, quote “the promises we made have been delivered” and also said “we can look at those figures and pat ourselves on the back”. This is simply not the reality of everyday Bermudians.

The Budget reminds me of when I was a little boy and my parents promised me my favourite candy on the condition that I ate all of my dinner. I eagerly did, only for the treat not to taste as sweet as I remembered. It wasn’t what I was expecting.

This, dear people of Bermuda, is what Premier David Burt and the PLP Government want you to believe—that this Budget’s budget is sweet, when it isn’t. At this juncture it just looks different.

Premier Burt says for the first time in years, his Government is projecting a balanced budget.

The One Bermuda Alliance is glad to hear this. We hope this will be the case…but we have grave concerns as the Government has raided the sinking fund and borrowed money.

This is aspirational – they’ve done this before – and overshot.

This isn’t the first time the people of Bermuda have heard this. In 2019, he made the same assertion, but a balanced budget didn’t happen. Are we going to end up down that road again in 2024?

It’s cold comfort when the reality on this island is…. It’s very difficult to find an affordable rental home…you can’t buy a bag of groceries for under $100…massive potholes are everywhere…there are approximately 600 people without homes in Bermuda.

Until real change is felt, these are just cold words being delivered to the Bermudian public by Premier Burt.

The Premier speaks of us having to get expert consultants in the game to help guide him through, however every step of the way he hasn’t listened to the people – fisherman, taxi drivers, who haven’t had a rate increase since the One Bermuda Alliance ran the Government.

Premier Burt hasn’t explained how he is going to reduce the cost of living… all he’s given us are aspirations…but you can’t continue to reduce taxes without stimulating the economy.

Once again he’s kicking the can down the road instead of giving the people of Bermuda what they deserve—a tangible plan. Premier Burt and the PLP Government is great at reflecting and saying, “I’m sorry.”

But where are the actions that the people of Bermuda really need in order to see a better tomorrow?

Today Premier Burt spent so much time focused on the Opposition, but those are pages in his Budget book that should have been dedicated to solving the island’s economic problems.

He can’t fix our problems by focusing on the attacking the Opposition. Instead, he could have proposed solutions for healthcare and immigration. There was no mention of growing the population.

The Premier seems fixated on the International Business sector, which is no doubt a valuable contributor to our economy…but the One Bermuda Alliance feels IB success continues to conceal the consequence of Government ineptitude.

Every resident on this island deserves a better Bermuda, not just today, but in the years to come. It’s becoming more and more clear that the Progressive Labour Party will not get us there.

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Comments (9)

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  1. Watching says:

    Will be interesting to saw what they come up with next week.

    • Truth says:

      “Will be interesting to saw what they come up with..”

      Wow, no wonder we’re broke.
      What happened to the educational system?

  2. kevin says:

    Balanced budget …pipe dream at best a betting guy anyone one to bet they will deliver it . This coming from a man who said its been 35 years since the last time a surplus from a budget and that was in 2003 , and this is the finance minister ..great math eh… this is a political election budget …guess one is coming this year before Christmas when numbers will be Actual and not just ink on a piece of paper ..please note a budget is what they are projecting and if they want the flock to believe they are the way this is how to do it. They have as much chance of having a surplus at the end of the year as AN ELEPHANT GETTING THROUGH AN EYE OF A NEEDLE …

  3. Watching says:

    The last two years have shown less deficits than projected. And were it not for the pandemic those years would have been much better. It may not fit the OBA narrative or the anti PLP narrative but it’s the truth. Barring any unforeseen circumstances I anticipate a surplus possibly even greater than the one projected.
    The sad thing is that the OBA and other critics would likely want something to happen to jeopardize the balanced budget just for political gain.

  4. Pa says:


    We all listened to the promise of a proclaimed balanced budget speech with great interest.

    Our descendants are faces with a $3.1 billion national debt from a position of financial success.

    As the speech neared the end we heard the Premier fire a barage of under mining insults at the OBA .

    Some what inappropriate and called for, don’t you think ?

    I presume many others on both sides of the table ,were left blind sighted and astounded, as the premier earlier proclaimed the parties many successes .

    This leaves me smarting from and with a complete lost as to budgets desired effect .

    • iyiyi says:

      Iyiyi…. we are in a huge mess . When a ruling party has to blame and attack the opposition that has no pull with pretty much any voter speaks volumes about any promises fulfilled from the PLP ….. GOD BLESS BERMUDA….. maybe he can make a divine change .

    • Joe Bloggs says:

      “a $3.1 billion national debt”

      Actually, our current account debt is close to $4 billion and we have the same again in unfunded pension liabilities.

  5. hmm says:

    These 6 are the bad actors that didn’t get selected for the Marvel initiative scripts and still don’t realize the movie was already made.

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