Sunday, March 20, 2016

BVI Budget Debate Starting on Tuesday


BVI Territory's largest proposed budget debate is to start on March 22, more than month after being presented by BVI Premier and Minister of Finance Dr Orlando Smith, and after weeks of meeting where parliamentarians examined the budget for the 2016 fiscal year; also, Accounting officers participated in these meetings, discussing plans for the ministries and departments. The meetings have finished, and now both the government and opposition sides will take part in the budget debate, which will be followed by the approval of the proposed budget, possibly with changes.

In his budget speech, the premier announced new tax measures which will make people pay more for work permits and water supply, and, along with new legislation enforcing compliance, will enable the government to collect over US$20mln in revenues. He said, however, that these new tax measures ‘will not have any great effect on the citizens of the BVI’. The opposition responded to this statement, saying that the tax increases are being proposed at a time when more people have less.

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