Senator Ming critical of OBA’s cut to Lefroy house budget

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Opposition senators yesterday said they were disheartened by budget cuts affecting the Island’s rest homes.

Progressive Labour Party Senator Renee Ming said yesterday that while the One Bermuda Alliance repeatedly criticised the condition of Lefroy House before the election, once elected they cut the facility’s budget rather than invest in improvements.

“We now see a reduction of $279,000 on Lefroy House, but last year your opposition didn’t think that facility was even up to par,” she said.

The Lefroy Care Community had been budgeted $5.25 million in 2012/13, but that figure was cut to $4.97 million in the 2013/14 budget.

The Sylvia Richardson Care Facility faced a similar cut with its budget reduced by four percent, falling from $5.47 million to $5.27 million.

During the Senate debate on the budget for the Ministry of Health and Seniors, Sen Ming questioned why, despite the budget reductions, the Government had forecasted improved performance in the budget.

The number of falls and injuries at Lefroy House were predicted to decrease in the coming year, while the forecast performance measures for the Sylvia Richardson Care Facility were expected to remain the same.

“I wonder how it is that performance measures will be achieved with the reductions that we see?” she asked.

“If the funding is reduced, the targeted outcome seems like it should reduce as well, but in some places they are going up.”

Senator Diallo Rabain mirrored Sen Ming’s concerns, saying: “All of their performance measures are going up. We are taking money away but we are expecting these departments to do better than they did last year.”

Responding, Government Senator Lynn Woolridge said the Government intends to improve efficiency across the board and do more with less to make the budget as written a reality.

In response to another question, Sen Woolridge said that the Ministry is still looking for a new home for the Orange Valley Centre.

The facility was moved from its original home on Parson’s Road in 2003 to a temporary building at the Mid-Atlantic Wellness Institute to make room for the Dame Marjorie Bean Hope Academy.

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Published Mar 26, 2013 at 8:00 am (Updated Mar 26, 2013 at 12:38 am)

Senator Ming critical of OBA’s cut to Lefroy house budget

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