PHILIPSBURG--The public meeting of Parliament on the draft 2023 budget, which was originally scheduled for 10:30am on Tuesday was rescheduled to today, Wednesday at 9:00am after two time changes due to “ongoing technical difficulties.”
The meeting was originally scheduled to start at 10:30am; however, a notice was received around 11:00am indicating that the meeting had been postponed to 2:00pm. Another notice was received at 2:18pm indicating that the meeting will be held at 3:00pm instead due to ongoing technical difficulties. The final notice indicated that the meeting would be held today, Wednesday, at 9:00am.
The budget was debated in a meeting of the Central Committee of Parliament over a span of several days last week. Finance Minister Ardwell Irion said at the start of last week’s meeting that the budget is balanced and he expects no surprises as advice received had been incorporated in the draft and the budgetary process is being continuously improved on. The estimated expenses and estimated expenditures in the draft stand at NAf. 495 million.
The initial draft 2023 budget had been retracted and adjusted based on the Article 11 advice that had been received from the Committee for Financial Supervision CFT. The budget was also adjusted in accordance with the most recent actual figures for the year 2022.
In the draft 2023 budget, personnel expenses were set at NAf. 218 million. The “pre-draft” 2022 budget stood at NAf. 208 million and the amended budget 2022 at NAf. 227 million.
Goods and services in the draft 2023 budget stands at NAf. 124 million, compared to NAf. 110 million in the 2022 pre-draft budget and NAf. 141 million in the amended 2022 budget. Subsidies stood at NAf. 96 million in draft 2023 budget; which was NAf. 100 million in pre-draft 2022 budget and NAf. 97 million in amended 2022 budget.
In addition to debating the draft budget, the meeting also has as an agenda point the ratification of the decision list of the Inter-Parliamentary Kingdom Consultations IPKO which was held from February 28 to March 3, 2023, in Willemstad, Curaçao.
The public can follow the deliberations in person at the House of Parliament. Visitors must adhere to the house rules. The House of Parliament is located across from the Courthouse in Philipsburg.
The session will be carried live on TV 15, Soualiga Headlines, SXM Gov Radio 107.9FM, Pearl Radio 98.1FM, www.sxmparliament.org, www.pearlfmradio.sx and www.youtube.com/c/SintMaartenParliament .