National Security gets over $700M in supplemental funding for ‘covert ops’, coastal radar and more

National Security gets over $700M in supplemental funding for ‘covert ops’, coastal radar and more

Parliament will meet tomorrow to approve a bill to finalise the supplementations for the Budget and a mid -year review will also be done.

This follows Monday’s meeting of Parliament’s Standing Finance Committee (SFC), which agreed to a total of $2.9 billion in additional funding being provided for 14 ministries and agencies for a wide range of expenses.

Of the $2.9 billion, $944.5 million in supplemental funding went to Public Utilities – the largest, while National Security received the second highest – $725.9 million.

Variation of expenditure was also done with $107. 3 million shifted from Finance to the Prime Minister’s office (which got an increase of $10m), Agriculture ($57.3 million), Social Development ($40 million), and the Police Service got an additional $57.7 million.

National Security Minister Fitzgerald Hinds said there was a shortfall in 2021 allocation and the ministry now needed supplementary funding for agencies including the Witness Protection Programme, Transnational Organisation Crime Unit, Counter Terrorism Unit, coastal radar system.

Additionally, he said money was needed to obtain vehicles to carry out covert ops, do repairs and modern cutting edge techniques for surveillance, cover PPE for prison officers, inmates’ housing and lifeguards equipment, training and uniforms for when beaches reopen.

Hinds also revealed that special arrangements are being made for maintenance of the two new Austal-built Coast Guard vessels coming to T&T by end of July.

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