I rise today to offer my contribution to the debate on the 2019/2020 Mid-Year Budget Performance Statement.
I do so on behalf of the wonderful people of Killarney, whom I have the privilege of serving in this chamber.
As many of my fellow honorable members stated in their prior contributions, the devastating impact of Hurricane Dorian is unprecedented in the history of our country
Damages, losses, and additional costs are estimated at $3.4 billion dollars.
Beyond the financial and economic impact, this catastrophic event has forever changed the course of the country in terms of public policy and public administration.
A tragic and calamitous event such as Hurricane Dorian, which had an unparalleled impact on our country, requires an unmatched and purposeful response by the Government.
Today, Mr. Speaker, I can say with great honor that my Government is doing exactly this.
Unlike our immediate predecessors in office, who experienced four hurricanes during their term and failed to adequately restore this country and our people, my Government is implementing a host of fiscal and economic policies to help our citizens to rebuild their communities and restore their lives.
We established, for the first time in the history of this nation, Special Economic Recovery Zones (SERZ) for the affected areas, which allow residents to benefit from tax exemptions and concessions on business licences, VAT, real property tax, and the free importation of approved items under this program.
No Government has ever done this in the aftermath of a natural disaster.
It is an unprecedented policy accommodation, and one that is essential to restoring the lives of our fellow Bahamians ... To view entire Mid-Year Budget Communication by PM Minnis see attached
Click to download the attached file(s):