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BAHAMAS: House of Assembly passes 2018/19 Budget, VAT increase to 12 percent

#Nassau, June 21, 2018 – Bahamas – The 2018/19 Budget passed Monday evening in the House of Assembly with the majority of Members of Parliament voting for a number of fiscal provisions, including increasing VAT to 12 percent.  Senate debate now takes place on the Budget, which takes effect, fiscal year beginning July 1.

House of Assembly results for the VAT increase were: 24 MPs voted yes; 7 MPs voted no; and there were 7 MPs absent.

The FNM MPs voting yes were Carlton Bowleg, Frankie Campbell, Shanendon Cartwright, Dionisio D’Aguilar, Marvin Dames, Shonel Ferguson, Romauld Ferreira, Michael Foulkes, Darren Henfield, Mark Humes, Elsworth Johnson, Hank Johnson, Jeffrey Lloyd, Rickey Mackey, Dr. Hubert Minnis, Michael Pintard, Reuben Rahming, Miriam Reckley-Emmanuel, Lanisha Rolle, Brensil Rolle, Dr Duane Sands, Brent Symonette, Peter Turnquest, and Renward Wells.

The MPs who voted no were: Reece Chipman, FNM; Frederick McAlpine, FNM; Vaughn Miller, FNM; and Travis Robinson, FNM; and Chester Cooper, PLP; Philip Davis, PLP Leader; and Glenys Hanna-Martin, PLP.

The MPs absent were: James Albury, FNM; Desmond Bannister, FNM; Picewell Forbes, PLP; Adrian Gibson, FNM; Iram Lewis, FNM; Pakesia Parker-Edgecombe, FNM; and Donald Saunders, FNM.

During his Contribution on to the Budget Debate on Monday, Prime Minister Dr. the Hon. Hubert A. Minnis told MPs, “If you want to sacrifice the future of this country, vote no to this budget….”

He staid that the budget “provides hope and opportunity for new home owners, entrepreneurs, young people, Over-the-Hill communities and hope for the future generations.

“The inspiration for my Government and for this Budget is to leave behind a better more secure, safer and prosperous country.”

Stressing that it is “not about VAT”, The Prime Minister acknowledged that much of the Budget might not be expedient, popular, safe or political.

“But conscience tells me that we are doing the right thing for the country and for the people that I love with all my heart and soul. We are doing the right thing for current and future generations.”

Also passed in the House of Assembly on Monday night was the Appropriation (Capital Development) Bill 2018.  Thirty-one Members of Parliament voted yes and seven were absent.

The 31 MPs who voted yes were: Carlton Bowleg, FNM; Frankie Campbell, FNM; Shanendon Cartwright, FNM; Reece Chipman, FNM; Chester Cooper, PLP; Dionisio D’Aguilar, FNM; Marvin Dames, FNM; Philip Davis, PLP Leader; Shonel Ferguson, FNM; Romauld Ferreira, FNM; Michael Foulkes, FNM: Glenys Hanna-Martin, PLP; Darren Henfield, FNM: Mark Humes, FNM; Elsworth Johnson, FNM: Hank Johnson, FNM: Jeffrey Lloyd, FNM; Rickey Mackey, FNM; Frederick McAlpine, FNM; Vaughn Miller, FNM; Dr. Hubert Minnis, FNM; Michael Pintard, FNM; Reuben Rahming, FNM; Miriam Reckley-Emmanuel, FNM; Travis Robinson, FNM; Lanisha Rolle, FNM: Brensil Rolle, FNM; Dr. Duane Sands, FNM; Brent Symonette, FNM; Peter Turnquest, FNM; and Renward Wells., FNM.

The MPs absent were: James Albury, FNM; Desmond Bannister, FNM; Picewell Forbes, PLP; Adrian Gibson, FNM; Iram Lewis, FNM; Pakesia Parker-Edgecombe, FNM; and Donald Saunders, FNM.

 

By: Lindsay Thompson (BIS)

 

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