Cabinet has approved additional amendments to the Financial Audit and Administration Act (FAAA) and the Public Bodies Management and Accountability Act.
Minister with responsibility for Information, Telecommunication and Special Projects in the Office of the Prime Minister, Hon. Daryl Vaz
“The existing Acts outline the broad parameters for achieving fiscal responsibility and fiscal prudence, and the proposed amendments will strengthen the fiscal responsibility framework and enable the move towards international best practices,” Minister with responsibility for Information, Telecommunication and Special Projects in the Office of the Prime Minister, Hon. Daryl Vaz said.
Mr. Vaz told the weekly Post Cabinet press briefing on Thursday July 15 at Jamaica House, that drafting instructions have already been issued to the Chief Parliamentary Counsel.
The Public Bodies Management and Accountability Act prohibits public bodies from entering into negotiations to borrow money, by way of an issue of bonds, without the prior approval of the Minister. The Act further seeks to provide for corporate plans of public bodies, and any subsequent modifications of such plans, to be submitted to the Minister for endorsement and laid before the House of Representatives and Senate for approval.
The FAAA also seeks to impose a duty on the Minister of Finance to table in Parliament a Fiscal Policy Paper containing, among other things, a macroeconomic framework providing an overview of the state of the economy. Both Bills were passed in the House of Representatives in February, 2010.
Mr. Vaz also stated that Cabinet has also approved amendments to the law governing the composition of the Board of Directors of the National Council on Education.
“The Minister of Education informed Cabinet that his Ministry ascertained that the law governing the National Council on Education needed to be amended, in line with the Government of Jamaica’s Accountability Framework for senior executive officers, to remove the stipulation that the Permanent Secretary shall be an ex-officio member of the board of directors,” he explained.
He said that it was proposed that the amendment should instead, specify that there should be a representative of the Ministry of Education on the board.