1 Oct 2010

Call for CNMI Legislature to make hard cuts to government departments

5:02 pm on 1 October 2010

The Northern Marianas' Chamber of Commerce is calling on the government to pass a sound budget that includes cutting the size of the public service.

The call comes as hundreds of public servants go without pay, following a partial shutdown of government services after the Legislature failed to meet last night's deadline for passing a budget.

The House of Representatives and the Senate are at odds over a number of issues on their versions of a 132 million US dollar appropriations bill, the most contentious of which is the number of work hour cuts for government employees.

But Jim Arenovski says both their priorities are wrong.

"There are folks in different forms trying to increase burdens on the business community that would pass on down to the consumers but that's just not going to cut the mustard when it comes to actually making a budget and keeping it solid. The true aspect of it is we need to work on finding out what is the right amount of people to be working in the government and to make those hard cuts."

Jim Arenovski says that's what the business community's had to do for the past four years.