House Ways and Means Committee chair Ray Basa (Cov-Saipan) introduced yesterday House Concurrent Resolution 17-4 to approve a fiscal year 2013 budget, a measure that Speaker Eli Cabrera (R-Saipan) said would be acted on during the next session.
Fiscal year 2013 is from Oct. 1, 2012, to Sept. 30, 2013.
Gov. Benigno R. Fitial submitted to the Legislature on March 30 a 2013 budget of $102 million, the same level as that of 2012.
Under the governor’s submission, the total projected resource for 2013 is $120.671 million. Of this amount, $102 million is available for government operations. The rest goes to bond payments, among other things.
Basa, in an interview, said he will start convening the Ways and Means Committee next week to review the governor’s 2013 budget submission.
“I am targeting mid-May to introduce a budget bill,” he said.
In fiscal year 2010, the government shut down for days because of failure to pass a budget on time resulting from a deadlock between the House and the Senate.
In 2011, the House and Senate were also deadlocked on the budget but were able to pass a spending package a few days before the Oct. 1 start of the fiscal year.
Basa said his committee will try to come up with a budget bill much earlier this year than in previous years.