Only a few days to go: We’re raising £25,000 to keep TheyWorkForYou running and make sure people across the UK can hold their elected representatives to account.

Donate to our crowdfunder

Budget 2016-17

Part of Executive Committee Business – in the Northern Ireland Assembly at 5:45 pm on 19th January 2016.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Gordon Lyons Gordon Lyons DUP 5:45 pm, 19th January 2016

I certainly was not referring to that conversation — you gave yourself away there. I was referring to what you said in the Chamber when you said that there was a lot of borrowing in the Budget. When we look at how the Budget balances, we see that there is no overcommitment for the first time in seven years. That is the first reason why I do not think the Budget is unbalanced.

The second issue is borrowing. That is what the Member was referring to and what I was talking about when she made her comments. Yes, there is borrowing in this, but there has been borrowing in every single year since it was allowed under this initiative in 2003. As my colleague said, that was brought in by the SDLP. The leader of the Ulster Unionist Party, who is not here any longer, said, "That was a long time ago". Yes, it was a long time ago, but either you realise that there needs to be investment and that we need borrowing or you do not. Borrowing is important when you are using it to invest in public services and want to invest in capital projects.