Kosrae State Leaders Endorse Fiscal and Institutional Reforms
Tofol, Kosrae (FSM Information Services): April 20, 2011 - Leaders of Kosrae State, Federated States of Micronesia, have concluded a three-day high-level conference of leaders to address ongoing financial challenges and identify necessary structural and institutional reforms to ensure long-term stability of Kosrae State.
The Kosrae Leadership Conference, convened by incoming Governor, the Honorable Lyndon H. Jackson, ended Friday with the signing of a communiqué and a series of reform resolutions.
With the theme, "Working Together to Move Kosrae Forward," the conference gathered leaders from the three branches of the Kosrae State Government, the Congress of the FSM, Kosrae municipal governments, the private sector, civil society, and churches.
Opening the conference, Governor Jackson remarked, "The purpose of this conference is to discuss and agree on a workable plan - a set of actions - the state government must take to address and hopefully resolve the fiscal challenges we continue to face." This includes the significant challenge of adjusting to declining financial support from the United States under the Compact of Free Association, as Amended.
In addition to immediate and shorter-term fiscal adjustment measures, leaders also discussed longer-term institutional reforms, including options for reorganizing the State Government architecture. "We must also look at the structure and individual functions of our government," the Governor remarked, "and ask ourselves whether the level of services provided justify the costs. Let us look more at the cost of doing things and determine if we can afford the bill, instead of forging ahead with services we cannot sustain".
Echoing Governor Jackson's sentiments, the Honorable Lyndon P. Abraham, Speaker of the Kosrae State Legislature, stated, "It is very clear that our needs are much more than what we can afford. For this reason, we need to prioritize our needs and do institutional and structural reforms to avoid unnecessary spending."
After days of deliberations and debate, the Kosraean leadership finalized an extensive range of actions and measures, from immediate expenditure compression efforts to potential Constitutional amendments that will restructure and improve the efficiency of the government.
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