CHARLESTOWN: Civil servants and pensioners in Nevis were urged to exercise prudence with the extra month’s salary they received with their monthly payments this week.
The gift is part of the 30th Anniversary of Independence of St. Kitts & Nevis’ celebrations. St. Kitts & Nevis achieved independence from Britain on September 19, 1983.
The advice came from Premier of Nevis and Minister of Finance Vance Amory as he announced the bonus payment on Tuesday at his Bath Plain Office.
“I do want to say to all of us that we should use this extra benefit wisely,” said Amory. “Try to ensure that some of it is saved if you are able to do so. Make sure you make some provision for your children because I think it is important that when one receives a benefit, a windfall benefit, that one does not expend it totally on consuming goods and services.
According to Amory, the Cabinet of the Nevis Island Administration (NIA) had approved the payment which will not be subject to any deductions for Social Security and Social Levy. However, one had to qualify for the entire bonus payment.
“All employees must have been employed continuously for the past 12 months in order to qualify for a full month’s salary,” he said. “Any employee who commenced employment less than 12 months ago will receive a pro-rated portion of their month’s salary based on their period of employment.”
The finance minister also disclosed Cabinet’s recommendation to boards of statutory bodies to make similar payments to workers.
“The Cabinet is further recommending that boards of statutory bodies sufficiently organize themselves and their financing and make similar payment to their employees at a convenient time during the month of September, 2013.
“On behalf of the Cabinet, I wish every employee a happy and blessed 30th Anniversary of Independence of St. Kitts & Nevis,” he said.
Amory said the payment by the NIA was made possible through some adjustments in its expenditure, along with outside assistance.
“I must say that we have had to make some adjustments in our expenditure as this was in accordance with a request or a statement made by the Prime Minister sometime at the end of last week,” he said. “However, with the support of our bankers, the National Bank of St. Kitts & Nevis, and having approached the SIDF, I think we have been able to make this arrangement.”
Notwithstanding, Amory said his administration is looking forward to a better 2014, when it planned to bring on stream other projects, among them construction works.
“Clearly we are looking to raise financing for the new government headquarters which we talked about and we are looking at financing for the reconstruction and rehabilitation of the two government buildings at Government Road near the hospital because I think this is important for us.
“Also we are looking at the involvement of the private sector in increasing the construction activity in our country. So I think that in 2014, we have another three and a half months to go, that we can see a really high level of economic activity which will begin the resuscitation and the re-establishment of a vibrant economy in our country, Nevis. Thank you again. Happy Independence to all of us,” he said.