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Senate Decreases Nat’l Budget Slightly -From US$794,533,681.83 To US$782,943,00

By Bill W. Cooper
The Liberian Senate has adjusted the proposed national envelop for the Fiscal Year 2023 from US$ 794,533,681.83 to US$782,943,00 to provide for the expenditure of the Liberian Government for its fiscal period.
It can be recall that the House of Representatives recently passed and forwarded an amount of USD 794, 533, 681.83 to the Liberian Senate for concurrence following a joint budget hearing where an additional revenue of US$ 16,589,682 was discovered, thus augmenting the proposed fiscal envelop of 777,943,00 that was sent to the Legislature by the Executive for consideration for fiscal period 2023 to US$ 794,532,681.83.
However, the action by the Liberia Senate was predicated upon its reflection on the fact that there was a shortfall in projected revenue collection in the 2022 National Budget and forecasting possible tax collection challenges in this election year of 2023 thus adjusting the additional revenue figure downwards from US$ 16,589,682 to US$ 5000,000.
The Liberian Senate has also made additional adjustments to the fiscal measures proposed in the House of Representative engrossed bill and through its committee, it stated further that all monies invoiced by the Ministries of Labour, Health and Public Health Institute, shall be paid into the Consolidated Account.
The Revenue sharing ration between the Government of Liberia and the Maritime Authority and between the Government of Liberia and the Liberia Telecommunication Authority shall be reviewed by the Senate.
At the same time, the Senate through its oversight responsibility are ensuring that Public Corporations and States enterprises, make just and fair contributions to the 2023 national budget.
Meanwhile, the Liberian Senate has instituted a series of measures and other issues for the implementation of the 2023 National Budget.
The august body has secured US$ 6,000,000 for civil servants’ salary adjustment for the minimum wage, while Health, Security and Education Sectors received rise in the 2023 budget.
At the same time, for the purpose of the conduct of the 2023 Presidential and Legislative Elections, significant increment was made in the 2023 budget for the upcoming elections.
The draft budget will be passed following the disposal of the motion for reconsideration that was filed by Montserrado County Senator, Saah Joseph.
Senator Joseph has since argued that Montserrado County has not been considered in the Western Cluster affected community social distribution as such, there is no need for the budget to be pass.
The Liberian Senate are also ensuring that major highways leading to counties’ capitols remain pliable especially during the rainy Season, and to achieve this a minimum of USD 500,00 shall be set aside under the National Road Fund for three major road corridors.
The roads include, Kanwenken, River Gee County to Tappita, Nimba County, Buchanan, Grand Bassa County to Barclay Ville, Grand Kru County, and Gbarnga, Bong County, through Zorzor, Lofa County.
With thus figure, a conference committee is expected to be setup by Legislature intended to reconcile the figures so as ensure the smooth and holistic passage of the budget.

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