$10.6 billion for public sector payments
The Government has set aside just over $10.6 billion in the 2017-2018 Budget to meet outstanding payments to public-sector workers and cost associated with the transformation of the sector.
This is included in the $485 billion allocated to the Ministry of Finance to pay recurrent charges in the new fiscal year.
The provision covers wage adjustments arising from negotiations involving the Government and public-sector bargaining groups for the 2017-2018 wage period and outstanding salary arrears to groups in the health sector.
It also includes provisions for groups which have not yet concluded negotiations for the 2015-2017 contract period, and an unstated allocation to refund the Petroleum Corporation of Jamaica for the Special Consumption Tax on fuel.
Most notable in the $10.6 billion is a provision to meet public-sector transformation cost which could signal redundancy payments for persons who could be displaced when the changes are made.