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Goverment reallocates $2.5 million

An extra $1 million in budget expenditure went on increased support for the Berkeley Institute

Government reallocated $2.5 million to bolster four ministries in the 2017-18 financial year.

The funds moved were already appropriated so do not constitute an overspend.

The Ministry of Education received the biggest supplementary injection of $1 million which went towards the operational grant to the Berkeley Institute.

David Burt, the Premier, said the government would spend less than originally allocated in the budget, despite the move.

The cash transfers were detailed in supplementary estimates passed in the House of Assembly last week.

Wayne Furbert, junior finance minister, said funding by the former One Bermuda Alliance government was “insufficient”.

The extra funds bring the total contribution to Berkeley to $13,240,000, which makes up 95 per cent of the school’s costs.

Cole Simons, shadow education minister, attempted to make a comparison with the spending private schools require per pupil, but was shouted down.

He also called on the Government to demand more transparency on day-to-day spending.

Mr Burt said it was “rich” for Mr Simons to ask for transparency when his government had not addressed the situation.

He added that after the Progressive Labour Party won last year’s election, a meeting was held with the Berkeley board of governors to ask for more openness.

About $400,000 went on cleaning up materials at the airport finger, designated as the site of a solar farm, to make it more attractive to bidders and $657,746 extra went on redundancy payments to employees at the tourism and transport HQ.

An extra 500,000 was spent on the Bermuda Infrastructure Fund.

The Supplementary Estimate No. 2 for Financial Year 2017-18 was passed in the House with no objections.

Government overspent by $4.3 million in the financial year 2016-2017 largely because of a legal settlement to a police officer exposed to toxic mould.

A court awarded damages of $5.4 million to Emmerson Donald after mould at Somerset and Hamilton police stations caused chronic health problems.

The extra funds, which came out of the budget for the Ministry of Public Works, was $4,230,840 according to supplementary estimates passed in the House of Assembly on Friday.

An extra $71,000 was spent from the Department of Tourism Development and Transport HQ’s budget for a Corporation of St George grant, which brought the total overspend for the financial period to $4,302,839.

UPDATE: This article has been amended to specify that $2.5 million was not overspent by the government in the 2017-18 financial year. The $2.5million was rather funding already appropriated but required reallocation among ministries.