Budget Bill: Second Stage

Part of Executive Committee Business – in the Northern Ireland Assembly at 9:00 pm on 9th February 2016.

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Photo of Jim Allister Jim Allister Traditional Unionist Voice 9:00 pm, 9th February 2016

I hear what the Member says. He is ever to be relied on to ride to the defence of the Executive. Time will tell whether the voluntary exit scheme turns out to be so beneficial. We certainly know that it is costing a huge amount of money; whether it makes those savings remains to be seen. In the short term, the outlay is very considerable. However, that is only a portion. Long before the voluntary exit scheme or anything else, the graph of the borrowings of this Executive was on a huge upward drive. It has now reached the point where no one seems to care that we are now the most heavily indebted region of the United Kingdom. That is not something to be proud of, and nor is this Budget.