Extra money for Bonaire with working agreements

KRALENDIJK – State Secretary Alexandra van Huffelen and the Executive Council of Bonaire agreed on Thursday, the 16th of June  on administrative working agreements. The agreements will run until the elections of March 2023 and elaborate on earlier agreements. The government will make extra money available to execute the agreements.

State Secretary Van Huffelen is pleased with the agreements made. “The administrative work agreements were established through intensive cooperation between the Public Entity and various departments, which has led to a nice mix of actions that make a visible difference for the inhabitants of Bonaire.”

Island Governor Edison Rijna further explains, “We are very happy with the active attitude and additional resources deployed by the Kingdom. As an island we do not want to look only to the Kingdom to realise results for the inhabitants, but Bonaire wants to do this more and more independently. With the new agreements we will continue to build on the sustainable development of Bonaire and the further professionalisation of the Public Entity Bonaire.”

Included in the working agreements are programmes resulting from the 30 million Euros which the cabinet has made structurally available for the Caribbean Netherlands through the Coalition Agreement. Thus 2.2 million is available for the elimination of backlogs, 1.7 million is available for the strengthening of the implementation force of the Public Entity, 1.4 million for the development of neighbourhoods and 1 million for labour mediation.  

The spearhead of all administrative working agreements is the realisation of noticeable improvements for the inhabitants of Bonaire. In addition to attention to administrative and executive power, the social agenda (with a focus on tackling poverty) and efforts on spatial and economic development, there are also agreements on a new library and efforts will be made on youth participation to stimulate young people to become (politically) involved in the development of Bonaire.

The ambition is to establish a long-term agreement after the elections with the new Executive Council and the new Island Council. The current agreements are in line with the Governance Agreement 2018-2022 with which good results have been achieved. Key positions within the Public Entity Bonaire have been filled, training programmes have been set up and twinning initiatives with municipalities in the European Netherlands have been started.   The job centre has been realised, steps are being taken to improve childcare, renovation of the main roads is in full swing and the supply of social housing is being expanded.

In addition, there are already agreements for the annual increase of the minimum wage, with the aim of achieving the social minimum benchmark in 2025, there is a proportional increase in minimum benefits, an increase in child allowances, structural efforts to reduce the costs of drinking water and the Internet and there is a local poverty policy aimed at, among other things, debt assistance and improving opportunities on the labour market.

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