Last update: 09-Dec-2013 1:43 am
Monday, December 09, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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THA’s Jack resumes budget consultations
Firmer regulations for farmers assigned state lands, farm modelling to incorporate best practices and advanced training for youth apprentices in agriculture are some of the recommendations that arose from a consultation between Finance and Enterprise Development Secretary in the Tobago House of Assembly (THA) Joel Jack, Secretary for Agriculture Godwin Adams and Tobago District Agricultural Society president Orwin Dillon.
The Secretaries met with the Agricultural Society in the first four consultations hosted by Jack in preparation for presentation of a fiscal 2014 THA Budget revision on October 24. The revision is expected to treat with shortfalls in the THA’s development expenditure. Chief Secretary Orville London has already signalled that the development agenda will be preserved to the greatest extent possible as well as the social net.
Jack said significant shortfalls in agriculture “have great ramifications for the revitalisation of the sector and the implementation of contingent projects.” The shortfalls primarily affect the Agricultural Incentive Programme, construction of the Scarborough Abattoir, restoration of the Scarborough Market and the upgrade of Hope Farm. These programmes experienced appropriation deficits of 50 per cent and more.
Dillon renewed the Society’s call for stricter management of state lands issued to farmers, a more structured use of the tractor pool and help for farmers to access incentive programmes. Jack also met with an eight-member delegation from the Tobago Chamber of Industry and Commerce headed by president Diane Hadad. A continuation meeting is to be held on Tuesday.
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