10SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr “It’s not in the budget.” “We don’t have the budget for that now.” “We didn’t budget for that item this year.”If you have ever worked in a credit union or bank, you have surely heard those words. Or should I say excuses? Because that is what those phrases are.Technology, marketing and training. Those seem like the areas hardest hit with the budget axe. But the “not in the budget” excuse can strike every part of the operation.How do you avoid the excuse trap? Here are four ideas:Shift dollars—The budget is probably the budget. There are certain net income numbers you are striving to hit. But that doesn’t mean when a new idea or project arises that you should automatically rule it out because you didn’t budget for that item. Just pull the dollars from another project. For example, if you don’t have the budget for a marketing audit then pause an advertising campaign because you feel the audit will improve your overall marketing efforts. Admit it’s not a priority—You need to align the budget with what is most important to your financial institution. So be honest when it comes to talking numbers. Is there really no room in the budget for a particular item or is the honest truth you don’t want to spend the money on it? For example, you may say you want to be a fast follower in technology but your financial priorities are more important than offering an awesome mobile platform. continue reading »
Lionel Messi has blasted his team-mates after Barcelona lost the LaLiga title to Real Madrid.The Argentine superstar dubbed them “weak” and “erratic” and cast doubt over their chances of reaching the Champions League quarter-finals.Real bagged their first LaLiga title since 2016/17 with a 2-1 home win against Villareal yesterday while Barca lost by the same scoreline at home to Osasuna.GURIAnd Messi, 33, said: “We didn’t want to end the season like this but it represents how the season has gone.“We were a very erratic, very weak, low-intensity team. We lost a lot of points and today’s game is a summary of the season.“We have to be self-critical. Starting with the players but doing a global self-criticism.“We are Barca and we have to win everything.“We can’t look at Madrid. Madrid have done their job, but we have helped them a lot.”And Messi also cast doubt over Barca’s ability to reach the last eight of the Champions League.They drew 1-1 at Napoli in the first leg of their last-16 tie before lockdown and have to beat the Italians or draw 0-0 in the home leg on August 8 to progress.Messi added: “If we want to win the Champions League, we have to change a lot. If we continue like this, we will lose the game against Napoli.”“We have to change lots of things.“We have a game against Napoli just around the corner and things have to change.“I think we’ll have a break now which will be good for us to clear the heads a bit.“January until now has been such a terrible time for everybody.“I think in the Champions League there are four matches where we could turn the whole season around if we get the right results.“I think the people here at the club will feel angry about what’s been going on this season but that’s normal, the players feel like that too, it’s logical people will be critical.“I think it’s like losing against Roma and Liverpool, when you don’t win anything no-one is happy.”Barca will face Chelsea or Bayern Munich in the next round if they beat Napoli.
Acting Minister for Finance and Development Planning Madam Tanneh Brunson presents 2017/2018 Budget to Speaker J. Emmanuel NuquayThe long awaited 2017/2018 National Budget, which should have been submitted to the Legislature on April 30, has finally been presented to the national legislature for that august body’s timely consideration. The late submission of the budget by the Executive has been creating some uneasiness in many quarters as the current budget year (2016/2017) has just a little over a month to expire on June 30.On Monday, May 22, the 2017/2018 fiscal budget was presented to House Speaker J. Emmanuel Nuquay by Deputy Finance Minister for Budget and Development Planning, Tanneh Brunson.Upon the presentation of the budget, Minister Brunson, currently acting Finance and Developing Planning Minister, said the formulation of the budget has been exceptionally constrained, not only by the impacts of slow post-Ebola economic recovery and unfavorable and domestic macroeconomic conditions, but also by the increasing expenditure demands placed on it.The Acting Minister said despite these challenges and a constrained fiscal space, the 2017/18 National Budget has been prepared in a framework which addresses critical public expenditure demands as the country faces two major transactions – the 2017 Presidential and Legislative Elections and the UNMIL drawdown.She indicated that the government remains committed to the delivery of critical public services, as well as the completion of ongoing projects in line with the national development plan (Agenda for Transformation).The Acting Minister said the total revenue estimate for FY2017/2018 is US$526.5 million – a 12.3% reduction from the US$600.2 million approved for FY2016/17, which reflects a 3.5% decrease on the end-of-year forecast of US$545.5 million.She said in order to submit a balanced budget the expenditure portfolio is constrained to US$526.5 million and consists of two major segments: Recurrent Expenditure of US$498.9 million or 94.8% and the Public Sector Investment Plan (PSIP) of US$27.5 million or 5.2%.She explained that the major components comprised of US$31 million for liabilities (debt services), including US$10.8 million to pay off domestic liabilities (debt)-principal and interests, and US$20.2 million for payment of foreign liabilities (debt)-principal and interests.Others are US$19.8 million for the conduct of the October elections; US$296 million for compensation of employees; US$81.1 million for goods and services, including supplies for education and health; US$3.4 million in subsidies to non-governmental service delivery entities; and US$60.3 million in grants to government service delivery entities.The Acting Minister further said the Liberian economy, like most in the world, is experiencing some turbulence due in large part to the global economic downturn.“We are confident that our economy will withstand the tests of the moment and is highly poised to come out stronger than before. However, this will not happen by chance, we will have to make tough decisions in both the short and medium term, not only within the Executive but also in the Legislative and Judicial branches of government,” she said.“In the short term, we will continue to apply fiscal measures to control expenditure and demonstrate our commitment to the priorities before us…But more importantly, we must continue to lead the charge together in taking practical steps to diversify our economy and insulate it from external shocks of the types we have and continue to experience over the last three years.”The Acting Minister also added that the budget will require government to continue to make investments in certain critical infrastructure such as electricity and roads, but it also requires that citizens, through private enterprise, take advantage of the opportunities in agriculture, agro-processing and light manufacturing.Meanwhile, receiving the Budget, Speaker J. Emmanuel Nuquay said the House of Representatives would prioritize roads, safe drinking water, health and education in the 2017/2018 National Budget.The Speaker said these four priorities stemmed from a Development Focus Survey and would be points of focus to disabuse the minds of Liberians that the Legislators are ‘self-interested’ in the Budget process.The Speaker, meanwhile, expressed his disappointment over the delay of the Budget, arguing that by law, it should have been submitted on April 30.He indicated that despite the procrastination, the Budget could be passed in a timely manner, and be used by July 1 if the Legislature gets the desired cooperation from the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning.“We would like to encourage that every member of the Legislature receive a copy of the 2017/2018 Draft Budget to help with the speedy passage,” the Speaker said.The Budget is expected to be included in today (Tuesday’s) agenda and subsequently be turned over to the Ways, Means, Finance and Development Planning and Public Accounts Committees to begin scrutiny.For a speedy passage, there will likely be a Joint Budget Hearing of both the House of Representatives and the Senate.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)