San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Infrastructure Will Suffer Unless Tax Plan is Approved

UNLESS the tax plan currently beingdebated by the Legislative Assembly is approvedin the near future, the Public Worksand Transport Ministry’s (MOPT) budgetfor 2005 will be reduced dramatically.The institution’s budget for next yearis expected to be ¢23.89 billion ($54.66million) — ¢12 billion ($27.46 million)less than last year. Two thirds of the budget,or about ¢15 million ($34.32 million),will be used to pay salaries. MOPT’s budgetcould be increased if the Perma-nentFiscal Reform Package is approved, thedaily La Prensa Libre reported.The budget cuts will dramaticallyreduced the amount of money MOPT candedicate to repairing and maintainingroads, according to María Lorena López,Vice-Minister of Public Works.López expects 60% of MOPT’s equipmentwill remain idle in 2005 if the taxplan is not approved.

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