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Explanatory Memorandum to Budget (Northern Ireland) Order 2003


3.Expenditure plans for the Northern Ireland departments for 2002-03 were agreed by the Northern Ireland Executive and approved by the Assembly in December 2001. These plans, and the consequential cash needs, were granted formal legislative authority by the Assembly in the Budget (No. 2) Act (Northern Ireland) 2002 in August 2002. This Budget Order provides Parliamentary approval for subsequent modifications to those plans, made since that time by the Northern Ireland Executive.

4.In addition, this Order authorises initial provision for 2003-04 (a “Vote on Account”), based on a proportion of the total voted provision for the current financial year (broadly 45 per cent), thus providing funds to departments for the early months of the next financial year. Further legislative authority to cover the full provision contained in the Budget for 2003-04 will be sought in early summer.

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