Budget postponed

 The presentation of the 2010-2011
Cayman Islands budget will not be presented to the Legislative Assembly by the
end of April as called for in the Public Management and Finance Law.

The government, in a press
statement released on Tuesday morning, said it aimed to bring the budget to the
Legislative Assembly by mid-May.

It said the delay was due to the
upcoming general election in the United Kingdom and to continuing efforts by
Cayman’s civil service to cut the budget.

“[T]he government continues to seek
reductions in next year’s budget and the civil service is still working to make
further cuts to the budget. 

“The government believes that it is
better to achieve realistic and meaningful budget reductions by delaying the
budget presentation rather than rushing to meet the PMFL deadline,” the
statement read.

“Secondly, even if the budget
reductions had been achieved this week, the Cayman Islands Government would not
have been able to gain the approval of the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth
Office,” the statement continued.

It said next year’s budget includes
borrowing which must be approved by the UK, but because the UK government had
called elections, the current minister responsible for overseas territories
cannot approve the borrowing needed for Cayman’s budget.

“In the UK, once elections are
called, the current minister cannot bind the incoming minister to such
approvals. In order to have obtained the approval of the current minister, the
budget would have had to have been ready before 5 April. The UK election was
called on6 April and parliament was dissolved on 12 April.

“Therefore, the UK’s approval of
Cayman’s 2010/11 budget will not come until after the UK’s general election on
6 May,” the statement read.

On Wednesday, 28 April, the
government plans to bring an amendment to the PMFL law that will allow it to
present the budget before the end of June 2010.