Strategy should be in place, says Lilo

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THE Chairman of the Public Account Committee and MPA for Ward 18 South Rendova, Hon. George Solingi Lilo says Western Province need to have a Provincial Fiscal Strategy that guides the fiscal policy of the Province.

Lilo said the Fiscal Strategy paper will prioritize the province’s expenditure policies. Apparently, we do not really know where we are heading to without a Fiscal Strategy.

“I recommend we give this policy strategy a priority prior to the 2019/2020 budget preparation process.”

“The Draft Revised Budget is not pegged against any credible economic variables, to say the least. The Budget is not taking advantage of the domestic or local economic data of the province. This is an important factor in the derivation of a budget document,” he added.

“We need to urgently facilitate the establishment of a Budget and Economic Research Unit that manipulates this information,” said Lilo.

He said a Strategic Plan articulates a coordination of programs against limited resources.

“This document should assist in prioritizing the allocation of resources as well as the implementation of those programs”, Lilo said.

Lilo pointed out that most importantly is the concern related to revenue collection against competing demands.

“This would mean that a lot of efforts may have to be pursued in terms of revisiting revenue-related Ordinances and re-strengthened them, for instance, Harbour and Wharfage Ordinance; Total overhaul of our Business License Ordinance and Regulations; Review of Basic Rates and Property Rates Ordinance; Investing of Funds into small-scale income-generating activities as required by Clause 22 Part 6 of FMO 2018 (draft); etc”, Lilo said.