By PRECIOUS IBINABO DAVIDS, Port Harcourt
The Governor of Bayelsa State, Seriake Dickson on Friday, presented a N150 billion Appropriation Bill tagged Budget of Transition for the 2016 fiscal year, as against N250bn passed into law in 2015 to the State House of Assembly.
The recurrent expenditure as presented to the State House of Assembly for passage into law, stands at N43bn and capital expenditure, N25.4bn.
The budget would be committed to the completion of ongoing projects in the state.
The projected statutory allocation from the Federation Account is put at N82.3 billion, capital receipts of N51.2 billion, independent revenue sources of N11 billion, which make up the expected total revenue.
The recurrent expenditure is having the highest allocation of N43 billion. This would enable us keep faith with the payment of workers salaries, regardless of the sharp drop in revenues occasioned by slide in crude oil prices.
Other expenditure items include, consolidated revenue fund charges N61.8 million, overhead of N20.2 billion, while capital expenditure was put at N25.4 billion.
The provision for capital expenditure for the current fiscal year as the least has never been throughout my first term, however we promise to review the allocation in the event of any positive change in the revenues accruing to the state.
On sectoral allocations, the Ministry of Works and Infrastructure gets the highest allocation of N5.2 billion, education N4 billion, Health N2 billion, Sports N1 billion, Community development N1.7 billion and Agriculture and natural resources N1.3 billion.
The Ministry of Tourism Development got N1.1 billion, Transport N1.1 billion, Housing and Urban Development N1.4 billion part of which would be utilized to build low income residential houses, in partnership with the private sector as land has already been acquired in different parts of the state for that purpose.
Assessing the performance of the 2015 budget of N250 billion comprising an anticipated statutory allocation of N182 billion, capital receipts of N48 billion, Value Added Tax N8.6 billion, what the government received was a far cry from what was projected. Actual statutory allocation for the 9 months ending at September was N146.5 billion, which was 47% lower than what was budgeted for. VAT N5.3 billion, independent revenue sources N6.2 billion while aids and grants amounted to N1.2 billion