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Wednesday 16 January 2019
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Govt increases Bret allocation by $5M

THE Government has increased the allocation for relief from Tropical Storm Bret from an initial sum of $25 million to $30 million, said Finance Minister Colm Imbert yesterday in the Lower House in reply to an urgent question by the Opposition. Oropouche West MP Vidia Gopeesingh-Gayadeen said the Penal-Debe Regional Corporation had complained that $25 million was too small a sum.

Imbert replied that he had received no request from the corporation for financial assistance , and it might be a good idea to ask them to do so.

Imbert said Cabinet last Thursday agreed to increase the allocation, and said some of the extra funding will be given to the Ministry of Rural Development and Local Government for re-distribution to local corporations.

Caroni East MP Dr Tim Gopeesingh said thecorporation’s chairman had suggested that compensation for farmers alone might amount to $25 million.

Imbert replied that farmers must make their representations to the Ministry of Agriculture, not to the regional corporations.

“That is the established procedure as far as I’m aware.” Naparima MP Rodney Charles asked the basis for the extra relief.

Imbert replied, “It is based on the capacity of the Government to provide relief at this point in time.”

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