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St. Maarten budget 2013 still not ratified

POSTED: 05/10/13

St. Maarten – More than two weeks after the 2013 Budget was approved by a majority in the parliament, it is yet to be written into law.  The national ordinance that should have followed the legislative approval of the policy document could be stalled as St. Maarten wades through the political muddle in the aftermath of the fall of the governing coalition that crafted and approved the financial instrument.

On Wednesday, Prime Minister Sarah Wescot-Williams said that as far as she was aware the 2013 budget had not been signed off on by the Governor drs. Eugene Holiday.  She said that she was unsure as to whether the document has even reached the cabinet of the governor.

The passage of the budget would have cleared the way for St. Maarten to access a 150 million guilders bond through the Central Bank for capital projects. However with the fall of the National Alliance/Democratic Party/Independent 3 government, priorities may be shifted.

Several motions passed during the budget debate, also called for the implementation of several projects that would resulted in additional spending, bring the Budget into an unbalance.

“You can’t take a decision or execute a motion without being able to look at the consequences. In terms of its execution government has to be very keen in terms of what the possibilities are. The Parliament is free to express its feelings in motions and proposals,” the prime minister said on Wednesday.

The Budget in its present form stands at 457,874,400 guilders.

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