Local November 4, 2015 | 1:07 pm

Dominican deputies slam +US$4.44B steamrolled 2016 Budget

Santo Domingo.- Tuesday´s Chamber of Deputies session todebate the 2016 Budget turned into a soapbox on which independent lawmakerMinou Tavarez Mirabal headed a barrage of criticism over how the vote wascalled without opposition lawmakers having a chance to speak their mind.

Minority FNP party deputyVinicio Castillo and independent lawmaker Guadalupe Valdez also backed Tavarez,who noted that the budget has exemptions that exceed RD$200.0 billion (US$4.44billion)

, mostly benefiting privatecompanies and sectors that can and should pay their taxes.

"A budget that isformulated without prior discussion with the various sectors again presents newinequities and imbalances which are directed to favor corporate interests. Manyof us fear that this diversion of state funds will be used to handle the cronyismin the 2016election campaign," the lawmaker said.

Tavarez´s complaint thatCongress passed the bill without amendments was backed by colleague and oppositionPRM party spokesman Nelson Arroyo, who called the document a “monstrosity,”given its lack of consultation or taking into account the needs and demands ofthe communities they represent.

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