Residents share their ideas about amendments to WolBES, FinBES

The laws governing the administrative and financial relations between the European Netherlands and the Caribbean Netherlands are to be modified.

The amendments are deemed necessary to improve the administrative and financial relations between the public entities and the European Netherlands. Through an Internet consultation, residents of Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba will be able to share their ideas about the amendments to WolBES and FinBES.

These two laws came into effect in 2010. WolBES defines how the public entities are organised, while FinBES sets out how financial relations and financial supervision are arranged.

In recent years, knowledge and experience have been gained about how these laws work in practice. There is also a better understanding of what is going well and where there is room for improvement.

The proposed amendments to the laws put more emphasis on the basis for trust between the European Netherlands and the Caribbean Netherlands, and more far-reaching local self-government.

A number of proposals have been made to improve administrative and financial relations. There are plans to increase the number of members of the Executive and Island Councils to strengthen local democracy.

In addition, the position of the Government Representative will be discontinued and his duties will be transferred to the Island Governor.

The amendments also seek to make supervision of the performance of the island tasks simpler and more flexible. The legislative amendments are to help ensure a better functioning and more effective government and less bureaucracy, to the benefit of the inhabitants of Bonaire, Statia and Saba.

The legislative proposals have been drawn up in close consultation with the public entities Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba. Advice has also been sought from various stakeholders, including the National Office for the Caribbean Netherlands, the Acting Government Representative, the Committee for Financial Supervision CFT and the various ministries.

All residents of Bonaire, Statia and Saba can say what they think about the law in their own language. The central government will be collecting suggestions on improvements to the bill from citizens, businesses and organisations on a special website.

Islanders are being invited via various media channels to respond to the proposed amendments to the WolBES and FinBES. Comments can be submitted on website up to 6:59pm Saturday, September 30, 2023.

The Daily Herald.

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