The Joint Budget, Public Accounts, Expenditure and Audit Committee of the 54th Legislature has announced the beginning of scrutiny of the 2019/2020 Budget in the tune of US$532 million on Tuesday, July 30, which is inarguably part of the Legislature’s oversight and appropriation functions.
The Legislature’s Budget Committee comprises members from the Committees on Ways, Means, Finance and Development Planning and Public Accounts & Expenditure, from the House of Representatives and the Senate. The membership is about members of the Legislature.
According to the schedule from the House’s Press and Public Affairs Bureau, over 40 governmental revenue generating entities are expected to appear in closed-door hearings between Tuesday, July 30 and Friday, August 9.
The 11-days undisclosed hearings will commence daily at 10:00 a.m. in the House’s 1st Floor Conference Room of the Capitol Building.
Heads of Ministries and State Owed Enterprises are requested to submit copies of their 2018/ 2019 budget Performance Reports, income statements, statements of cash flow and statements of retained earnings and strategic plan, as required by the Public Financial Management Law of 2009.
The Ministry of Finance and Development Planning and the Liberia Revenue Authority (LRA) will be the lead or seated entities throughout the revenue forecast.
The two institutions will be joined by the National Port Authority (NPA) on the first day, Tuesday, July 30.
On Wednesday, July 31, the institutions that have been invited include the Liberia Petroleum Refining Corporation, Liberia Maritime Authority, Liberia Telecommunication Authority, Ministry of Mines and Energy and the Ministry of Transport.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Justice Ministry, the Liberia National Police, the Liberia Immigration Service, the Liberia National Fire Service and the Ministry of Post and Telecommunications will appear on Thursday, August 1.
The revenue forecast hearing will also be held on Friday, August 2, with the Ministry of Labor and the Ministry of Commerce and Industry in attendance. Others are the Liberia Business Registry, the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection and the Ministry of Public Works.
On Monday, August 4, the revenue component of the 2019/2020 Budget will continue with the Forestry Development Authority, Ministry of Health, John F. Kennedy Medical Center, Liberia Medical and Dental Council, Liberia National Board of Nursing and Midwifery and the Liberia Medical and Health Product Regulatory Authority.
The Ministry of Internal Affairs, Ministry of Youth and Sports, Center for National Documents, Records, and Archives, Liberia Institute of Public Administration and the Liberia Land Authority will appear on Tuesday, August 6; while on Wednesday, August 7, the Judiciary, Liberia Domestic Airport Authority, Roberts International Airport, Environmental Protection Agency and the National Housing Authority will in attendance.
The Liberia Electricity Corporation, the Liberia Water & Sewer Corporation, the National Transit Authority, the National Identification Registry and the National Lottery Authority have been invited to appear on Thursday, August 7, while Monrovia City Corporation and the Paynesville City Corporation will join the revenue forecast hearing on Friday, August 8.
According to the House’s Press and Public Affairs Bureau, the expenditure revenue of the 2019/2020 will be announced hopefully on Friday, August 8.
It may be recalled that after 57 days of delay on the submission of the 2019/2020 budget, the draft budget was submitted on Friday, June 28.
Following the submission of the draft budget, there were ‘hitches’ on the commencement of the scrutiny of the draft budget because of the failure to provide supporting fiscal documents including the Fiscal Outturns (2018/2019), Budget Framework Paper (2019/2020), the Budget Annex- Public Debts (2019/2020), and the Gender Budget Statements (2019/2020).
Others were the Consolidated State-Owned Enterprises Budget Annex (2019/2020), copies of the 2019/2020 Draft Budget to all members of the 54th Legislature, the Revenue Projection Template and Forecast (2019/2020).