Gov’t Increases Spending by $11. 2 Billion

The government has increased the 2011/12 budget by $11.2 billion.

This was revealed in the third Supplementary Estimates tabled on Wednesday March 20 in the House of Representatives. The new budget reflects total government expenditure of $536.4 billion for the rest of the fiscal year from the previous $525.2 billion, which was approved in the Second Supplementary Estimates on March 6.

The estimates show an increase in the recurrent (housekeeping) expenditure from $349 billion to $352 billion, an increase of $3.2 billion, while there was an increase in both Capital A and Capital B from a total of $176.2 billion to $184 billion reflecting an increase of $8 billion.

According to a Ministry Paper tabled in the Lower House, the increases to the budget were consequent on changes in the amounts allocated from the Consolidated Fund to two public bodies: the Road Maintenance Fund (RMF) and the Clarendon Alumina Production (CAP).

There is an additional allocation of $1.19 billion from the Consolidated Fund to the RMF in respect of the Jamaica Development Infrastructure Programme (JDIP).

Of this amount, US$8.1 million is the government’s counterpart payment on additional expenditure of US$53.7 million, while US$13.7 million represents management fees due to the RMF and the National Works Agency (NWA).

With regards to CAP, there is an allocation of US$58 million in the third supplementary estimates to liquidate arrears accumulated by CAP to Alcoa.

The third Supplementary Estimates are to be discussed by the Public Administration and Appropriations Committee (PAAC) on Wednesday March 21, 2012 at 9:00 am.

The committee is to present its report to Parliament later that day for review by the Standing Finance Committee and debate the same afternoon.

By Latonya Linton, JIS Reporter

JIS Social