Wednesday, 15 December 2010


With Trimblesque skill McNarry's prediction that a draft budget was pie in sky has been disproved within 48 hours with it now on the table for people to inspect.  Beyond providing a lesson in the dangers of political predictions the big politics of this should be recognised, the Executive has passed another major test. 

The obvious test at the start of this term was the devolution of Policing and Justice and this was achieved.  Circumstances then created budget issues for it to handle.  The NI Executive was the only devolved administration to implement the emergency budget cuts in this budget year (which helped created some breathing space in the next financial year).  

The Comprehensive Spending Review gave it a much bigger task.  The easy option would have been to cut a one year deal and a number of commentators predicted just that.  It didn't.  It went for the four year package.  While this draft budget will invariably involve pain when it is finalised it will mitigate it to some degree by providing people will have a degree of certainty of how much pain, when it will come and for how long.

The consultation process on the draft is a test for our broader civic society to see if they can behave as responsibly and where the seek changes to cuts that they provide credible alternatives of where else they should fall.

Today it should be acknowledged that Stormont and how it operates may not always be quick or pretty but it is functioning.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Trimble aspires to be as bad as McNarry. Once again when the really big important decisions are to be made, the UUP runs frit, standing on the sidelines with their Stoop mates (who incidentally they fought like cat and dog with when they were the two largest parties) and looking utterly irrelevant to the whole process.

Sammy Wilson gave a good performance today and was clearly on the top of his game. He has grown in to the Finance role to the extent that its hard to imagine anyone else in it.

The DUP has Robinson, Wilson, Dodds, Foster, Campbell, JD and a very solid B team: Hamilton, Ross, Weir, etc.

Just what does the UUP have?