4 May 2006

The Northern Marianas administration seeks to reduce annual budget

11:29 am on 4 May 2006

The Northern Marianas administration has indicated it wants to further reduce the annual budget to just over 193-million US dollars.

The Saipan Tribune reports the move would be a 5 million US dollar cut from the current fiscal year's already reduced budget.

The total submission by government offices totalled nearly 252 million dollars but the govenor Benigno Fitial says it is imperative that the CNMI continue to exercise great fiscal prudence.

The reduced budget means the elimination of certain employee benefits, the removal of vacant positions, the termination of funding for capital improvement equipment as well as the implementation of a flat tax system.

Mr Fitial says the budget for the 2007 financial year will be the first balanced budget in years.