A leaked document from Tuesday’s Cabinet meeting confirms that the Government is looking at various ways of increasing revenue. The document is a report presented to Cabinet in which one of the suggestions is a proposal for the Government to collect 10% of the revenue generated by Statutory Boards in Belize.
Statutory Boards are those organisations run by a mixture of Government and Civil Society such as Belize Tourism Board, Protected Areas Conservation Trust, the Social Security Board, Belize Agriculture Health Authority, BELTRAIDE and the Coastal Zone Management Authority.
The Boards rely heavily on the revenue they generate for programs and initiatives so it will undoubtedly be an unpopular move, especially for institutions like Belize Tourism Board. As for the Social Security Board, which manages purely workers’ savings, the suggestion that they will have to hand over 10% of the funds will surely not be welcome news for Belizean workers and Union representatives. There is already much controversy about the use of millions of dollars from SSB to bailout Belize Telemedia and Belize Electricity Limited. From what we know it is the first time that Statutory Boards would be asked to give up a portion of their revenues to Government.