Speaker Symington’s Statement on Economic Stimulus Plan

first_imgSpeaker Symington’s Statement on Economic Stimulus PlanMay 1, 2008Addressing the bipartisan Committee on Economic Recovery and Opportunity today, Speaker Gaye Symington delivered the followingstatement:”I would just like to begin by thanking you for your work. You’ve brought good thinking and good questions to this effort and have improved the material that has been put before us and I thank you for that.”Your work has built upon what we have accomplished throughout the session, focusing on what is putting pressure on Vermonters: their health care costs, their fuel costs, their food costs, housing prices.I am pleased that your recommendations fit into the work that is already in motion in the House.”The legislature has been fighting for more bonding for roads and bridges and making our transportation infrastructure more whole — and we got that.”Weve been fighting for more investment in workforce training, especially where there are job openings — and we got that.”We’ve been fighting for more investment in energy efficiency and weatherization — we got that.”We’ve fought for more attention to affordable housing, to a diversified housing base — we got that.”We are still fighting for more accountability in the proposal for the manufacturer’s tax credit — and I hope you get that.”And now, the remaining question is: where do we go with the sales tax holiday?”I want to repeat that our focus so far has been on what really impacts Vermonters and their budgets and their lives.”I don’t think the sales tax holiday does that.”I don’t think it is the best use of taxpayer resources. I do agree with our economist, who has stated that this would have very little stimulative effect on the economy. I don’t think that this is a long term solution. I don’t think it builds on the strengths of Vermont, as opposed to trying to play catch up and copy cat from other states. I don’t think it benefits the Vermonters who are struggling to make ends meet instead it focuses on Vermonters who have discretionary income and can choose when to make their purchases.”It is clear to me that Governor Douglas is looking to make this the focus of the end of the session, and to turn our good work into an argument over the sales tax holiday. And I won’t let that happen.”I will not stand in the way of a sales tax holiday. I would ask that, if we are going to move ahead with a sales tax holiday, that you give your attention to the details that weren’t thought out in the presentation as it came to us.”But it is time to move forward, to close out the session, to come to resolution, and this is important to Governor Douglas. I realize that, and I am willing to make that concession in order of the rest of our good work to stand firm and go forward.”Thank you.”last_img read more

Finance Ministry Praised on Assurances against ‘Tumbling Economy’

first_imgThe Liberia National Students Unions (LINSU) has expressed its satisfaction and appreciation to Finance Minister Amara Konneh of assuring Liberians of making progress to improve the economy despite the challenges of continuous budget shortfall.The president of LINSU, Varney A. Jarsey, said though the admittance of a declined economic by the Finance Minister is troubling, but they believe it is reflective of global and regional economics, which is associated with the decline in demand of worldwide commodity prices, exchange rate vitality and other external shocks.The LINSU boss said consistent with research and confirmed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), there is a threat to sub-Saharan Africa because growth stability would be external to include exchange rate vitality, as seen in Ghana, Nigeria and other African countries and the falling prices of key commodities like iron ore and rubber, which Liberia largely depends on.He made the remarks Thursday, May 15, at a press conference held at LINSU’s headquarters in Monrovia. Mr. Jarsey said their statement was based on what they witnessed during the May 13th appearance of Finance Minister Konneh at the House of Representatives.“In view of these developments, and our vested interest in resource mobilization and allocation through the budget, LINSU is constrained by moral imperatives and duty bound to comment on these developments, having witnessed the hearings, conducted its own research, made inquiries and reviewed relevant literatures, “ Mr. Jarsey said.The LINSU boss stated that like in the case of Liberia’s declined economy, Ghanaian President John Mahama made a startling remark during the National Economic Forum in Ghana on May 13, 2014, coincidentally the same day the legislators invited honorable Konneh and his team were invited.According to Mr. Jarsey, the Ghanaian President said: “We are in the midst of overcoming various challenges associated with this new national income status while at the same time striving to develop the institutions that would enable us grow and transform our economy at this time of great volatility and uncertainty in the global economy.”He continues: “Three aspects of these challenges to which I’ve referred have remained particularly persistent over time. These are: the rising debt levels, as well as the associated burden of servicing them; the disproportionate amount of government revenue that goes into the payment of salaries and benefits of public sector workers and pensioners; and the resultant high budget deficits.”The LINSU president told reporters that the student body holds the view that no one individual both on the fiscal and monetary side of the Liberian economy should be singlehandedly blamed for the current turbulence, therefore the legislature should not front for resignation of public official amidst the global economic problems, but should rather help clean the messy system.“We as a national student movement worry more about the current state of Liberia’s educational system as prescribe by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf as a ‘mess.’ LINSU believes the legislature must put more monies in the National budget to rescue Liberia from this academic menace or debacle,” Mr. Jarsey opined; adding: “as we all strides to build the human resource capacity of young Liberians.” In the wake of tackling the budgetary shortfall, LINSU has urged the spending agencies to be committed to contribute to the budget and the Executive and Legislative Branches of government should refrain from “wasteful and unnecessary spending.”“Once we continue to make ambitious overestimates, we are risking a shortfall. We need to use the 2013/2014 budget as a lesson and prepare a realistic and better spending plan in 2014/2015,” the LINSU boss said. “We cannot spend what we do not have!”The national student body also urged members of the legislature to conduct state matters in ways that reflect a unity of purpose than reverting to the media to attack, criticize or make policy comments when said can be addressed on the floors of the legislature.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more