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Government plans ‘interventions’ to lessen Caymanian unemployment

The Cayman Islands government intends to focus on “specific interventions” to assist in lessening Caymanian unemployment within the next 18 months, Premier Alden McLaughlin said Monday.

Public liabilities: Health, pensions, Election Day

The first step to addressing a problem is admitting the problem exists. According to that standard, the Cayman Islands government has a serious problem.

'Save the mortgage' loan repayments lacking

Government loans that doled out US$2.5 million to financially distressed Cayman Islands homeowners during 2011-2012 cannot reasonably be called “loans,” auditors concluded after a review of the Save the Mortgage program.

Finance minister: People ‘giving up’ on mortgages

Homeowners who are simply “giving up” on current mortgages and leaving the Cayman Islands make up the second most common reason for bank foreclosures, Finance Minister Marco Archer said Monday.

Government delays pensions review release

The Cayman Islands government will not release a financial evaluation originally conducted in 2014 of its three public sector retirement savings plans, which include the plans that provide pensions for thousands of civil servants, until March 2016.

Unemployment rate up nearly 1 percent in spring

The overall unemployment rate in the Cayman Islands rose in spring to 5.6 percent, up almost a full point since late 2014, according to data from the Economics and Statistics Office.

Auditor general report: Government revenue collection ‘open to abuse’

Poor record keeping and a lack of specific criteria for waiving government fees leaves the “revenue collection operations open to abuse,” according to the acting auditor general.

Miller: Two-year government budgets lack transparency

A move to a two-year government budget process, approved late Wednesday by Cayman Islands lawmakers, will lessen scrutiny and transparency around public finances, independent and opposition lawmakers said.

Petition leads to Mortgage Law proposal

A public push to lobby banks for leniency on home mortgages has led to a legislative effort to change Cayman’s lending rules.

Bill seeks move to two-year budgets

If legislative proposals made public Wednesday are adopted, the current government budget will be Cayman’s last one-year public sector budget cycle.

Scholarship offered to doctors for specialist training

The Cayman Islands Seafarers Association will sponsor two Caymanian doctors over the next four years as they train to become specialists.

Economy expands 1.4 percent, consumer prices fall sharply

The Cayman Islands economy expanded by an estimated 1.4 percent, buoyed by strong growth in the hotel and restaurant, and real estate, rental and business services segments.

Tax increase for land holding company transfers

An amendment to the Land Holding Companies Share Transfer Tax Law increases the tax on land transfers to 7.5 percent from a 4 percent tax for Caymanians and 6 percent for non-Caymanians.

Marriage debate was 'hate speech,' rights commission says

The Human Rights Commission accused certain MLAs of using their elected positions to espouse “poisonous hate speech and threats of violence” against homosexual men and women.

Demand notices sent on dozens of properties

Since the beginning of the year, demand notices have been issued by Cayman Islands financial institutions on 39 properties that hold a total of $8.45 million in loans.

Personal finance meetings begin at MLA offices

A personal financial advisory program sponsored by two Cayman Islands Legislative Assembly members got under way Tuesday night.

Government says marriage is between one man, one woman

The Cayman Islands government has passed a motion to maintain the definition of marriage as it is currently written in the law: a union between a man and a woman.

Construction rules, financial services regulations, NRA funding approved

A number of significant laws were approved by the Legislative Assembly last week. The Compass takes a look at what they will mean for local businesses.

Government rescued by FirstCaribbean on debt deal

Government agrees to back a US$36.8 million refinancing deal for some development bank loans.

'Nation Building' audit: Why is the AG delaying its release?

We understand our lawmakers are busy people, but how much time, really, do they need in order to review a report on the government's activities?

Release of Nation Building Fund audit delayed

A government audit report into the Nation Building Fund, initially set to be released today, will now be made public on Aug. 17.

Most MLAs not ready to take sides

The members of the Legislative Assembly are not yet revealing where they stand on the issue of whether a cruise berthing facility should be built in George Town Harbour.

Government sees spike in foreclosures again

A second rise in foreclosures within two years is cause for concern in Cayman.

Work permits and PR: Unshackling Cayman's economic progress

There is a way to encourage expatriates to keep and invest their money in the Cayman Islands, and to reduce our country's reliance on work permits.

Economy grew 2.1 percent in 2014

Cayman's gross domestic product increased by 2.1 percent last year, the strongest economic growth since 2007.

Pharmaceutical contract draws prosecutors' scrutiny

A second public hospital contract catches local prosecutors' attention in the CarePay criminal probe.

Proposed districts average 1,330 voters

Most districts will have an average of 1,330 potential voters in the new proposal for 19 electoral districts.

Corporate property transfer duty never implemented

Cayman's government has apparently missed out on share transfer taxes from corporate entities over the past three years.

Cruise pier report funded by Environmental Protection Fund

A report detailing the damage to coral reefs that will be caused by new cruise piers in George Town harbor will be funded, in part, through the Environmental Protection Fund.

Lawmakers to approve $121M surplus budget

Cayman lawmakers are set to approve a budget that includes a CUC rate cut and pay raises for civil servants.

Miller: Block foreigners from civil service college

North Side MLA Ezzard Miller wants to block non-Caymanian civil servants from taking further education courses through the civil service college.

Civil servants left in limbo on retirement change

Some older civil servants are being left in uncertain positions as government debates changing the retirement age.

NRA to receive dedicated annual road maintenance cash

Cayman's road repair efforts will finally receive a steady funding stream.

Premier calls anti-corruption editorial 'treasonous'

Cayman's premier accuses the publisher of the Cayman Compass newspaper of crimes against the state over an editorial.

Online poll: Much improved grades for Progressives

The People’s Progressive Movement-led government has made a dramatic improvement over the last eight months in the eyes of the populace, according to the results of a caymancompass.com online poll.

Civil servants balk at healthcare co-pays

The Cayman Islands Civil Service Association says it will consider paying for healthcare, as long as it is not provided by the government Health Services Authority.

Manderson: Health co-pays will take time

Cayman's deputy governor says proper planning is needed before changing the government's healthcare system.

Minister: Customs made errors on import tariffs

Government is still trying to get its new customs tariff codes right, more than a year after charges were made to the tax system.

MLA Suckoo: FFR still handcuffing government

Cayman's government could do a lot more to help its people, if its hands weren't tied by U.K.-agreed fiscal constraints, an MLA says.

Seamen's support grows to $6M

Cayman's seafaring days may be in the past, but its benefits list for ex-seamen is growing.

Archer: Cayman's financial 'freedom' still needs work

The Cayman Islands may indeed emerge from the end of its 2015/16 budget without the United Kingdom needing to approve future government spending plans, Finance Minister Marco Archer confirmed Friday.

CUC rate cut: How much will it save?

Combined rate cuts in diesel fuel imported by Caribbean Utilities Company will cost the Cayman Islands government nearly $17 million dollars in tax revenue over an 18-month period.

Government's businesses set to 'earn' $12.8 million

Cayman's separately-operating public entities will earn nearly $13 million this year, but only after spending $98 million.

Civil service healthcare payments put off

What looked to be an extremely difficult political decision for the Progressives-led administration has been put off until well after the May 2017 general election, government leaders announced Friday.

Labor changes may impact jobless rate

Local unemployment numbers could stagnate or even rise if proposed changes to the Cayman Islands Labour Law and the civil service retirement age take effect within the next year.

Premier to present final 'UK-approved budget'

Cayman appears to be in its final year of having its government budget approved by the United Kingdom.

Budget: CUC diesel tax cut, minimum wage planned

The Cayman Islands government proposes a duty rate cut for diesel imports to CUC in next year’s budget, starting in January. It also plans to give a 4 percent cost of living pay increase to civil servants and increase spending in a number of other areas, leading to a projected $16 million rise in operating expenses from the current year’s budget.  

Labor survey goes to twice a year

The Economic and Statistics Office will now conduct its labor survey twice a year, giving more regular economic data.

Development Bank has no cash for business loans

The Cayman Islands Development Bank is currently unable to offer loans to small businesses, according to Commerce Minister Wayne Panton.

Legislative roundup: Caretakers get break on rollover

Caregivers of the elderly, sick and disabled are again granted their rollover exemption.

EY report six months later

A six-month progress update on the Ernst & Young government consulting report shows slow going.

Unemployment in Cayman drops to 4.7 percent

A new economic report shows unemployment dropped to levels not seen since before the recent recession. Caymanian unemployment fell by 1.5 percent.

Government backs paraquat ban

Cayman's government looks set to ban a dangerous herbicide from the islands.

Property valuation for government buildings complete

The Cayman Islands government will finally know what its properties are worth in current value terms.

Projected four-year budget surplus: $555M

The Cayman Islands government will accumulate operating surpluses of more than $555 million over the next four years, according to Premier Alden McLaughlin.

Premier links more work permits to economy

Cayman's premier takes heart at burgeoning work permit numbers in the territory.

'Aldenomics': Cayman's economy too hot to handle?

During a recent TV interview, Premier Alden McLaughlin issued what is, perhaps, an extraordinary warning in regard to the economics of the Cayman Islands.

Grand Court opening: Case management to be reviewed

The opening of Grand Court for 2015 revealed plans for a UK criminal justice advisor to assist with a review of prosecution support systems.

Room at the top: Vacancies at Customs and Immigration

High-level vacancies, such as at the Customs and Immigration departments, demand immediate attention and action from Cayman Islands officials.

2013 GDP growth, led by hotels and restaurants, revised to 1.4 percent

Fourteen of 18 industry sectors grew their economic output last year.

Brac duty concessions extended through 2015

Government has extended certain duty concessions, affecting predominantly Cayman Brac, in an attempt to stimulate economic activity.

Top Story of 2014: CarePay criminal probe rattles gov't

The Cayman Islands Health Services Authority, and the local government generally, were shaken by revelations of a criminal probe into the hospital system's swipe card contract.

Cayman's budget 'freedom' curtailed by FFR

Cayman's government may be operating under its own power by mid-2016, but the U.K. will still have its fingers on the strings.

Healthcare co-pays, benefit reductions recommended

The harsh realities of healthcare costs are about to hit Cayman Islands government workers.

Household expenses survey starts in January

Researchers will ask 1,400 Cayman households to track expenses for two weeks for the Household Budget Survey.

Minister: Mortgage rescue plan 'not effective'

Government's former 'Save the Mortgage' program apparently didn't live up to its name.

Who makes more on electricity: CUC or government?

The responsibility for keeping a family's ceiling fan and refrigerator running does not fall at the feet of Grand Cayman's private energy provider.

Government pay increase not across-the-board

While all Cayman Islands central government employees will receive a four percent pay hike in July, the same increase has not been assured for employees in the statutory authorities and government-owned companies that operate separately from the civil service.

Hedge Funds Care aids charities

The Hedge Funds Care benefit gala at The Ritz Carlton, Grand Cayman on Saturday night raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for local charities that help prevent and treat child abuse and neglect.

Pay raise is 'needed relief'

A pay raise for the civil service is described as "needed relief" from rising prices in Cayman.

Minister Archer: ‘Respectable’ growth forecast for Cayman Islands economy

Cayman plans on steady, if unspectacular, economic growth over the next few years.

4 percent pay raise for Cayman Islands civil servants

Civil servants will get a 4 percent pay raise in July, Premier Alden McLaughlin announced Wednesday.

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