by Linda Straker
- Free gas policy discontinued and replaced with EC$2,000 travel allowance
- Fixed landline allowance discontinued and replaced by Government-funded cellphones
- Travel allowance does not apply to Prime Minister’s Office
Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell has confirmed that Cabinet ministers apart from himself are receiving EC$2,000 as a domestic travel allowance.
“Just to be clear: the Office of the Prime Minister, that travelling allowance does not apply to that office because state vehicles are provided for that office,” he said on Tuesday, 13 September 2022, in response to a question about any amendments made to ministers’ salaries and or allowance since the new Cabinet took the oath of office on 30 June.
Grenada’s General Election on 23 June resulted in the National Democratic Congress (NDC) political party, led by Dickon Mitchell, winning 9 of the 15 seats in the Lower House of Parliament. Head of State Governor General Dame Cécile La Grenade invited him to form the new Government.
The Prime Minister said, “We were advised that there is also a free gas policy, which allowed — I am not clear if it’s ministers or MPs or both — to obtain gasoline or fuel from the Central Police Station. There seemed to be no controls in place, no written policy, rules and regulation governing it, and so we discontinued it, and instead we gave the ministers a EC$2,000 travelling allowance which would allow them to, in fact, have gasoline and/or a driver if they so choose,” he explained.
Additionally, an EC$57 fixed landline allowance was discontinued. “When we assumed office, it was clear that ministers were being provided with a cellphone at the expense of the Government of Grenada, so there was no need to have a fixed line telephone allowance,” the Prime Minister said.
A supplementary Appropriation Bill is expected to be tabled in the Lower House of Parliament by the end of September to adjust the revenue and expenditure of the State.
The previous New National Party (NNP) administration gave Cabinet ministers EC$600 for domestic travel on salaries plus EC$200 weekly in gas from the Central Police Station. The monthly total was no more than EC$1,600.
Essentially a pay increase….