Published On: Tue, Sep 29th, 2020

SOAB finds nothing wrong with execution support programs

PHILIPSBURG – The government accountants bureau (Soab) audited Finance Minister ardwell Irion’s income and unemployment support programs and found that these programs are mostly executed conform the rules established in the ministerial decree of May 14.

There were 340 approved applicants for the income support program; SOAB tested 174 of them; they represent 483,000 guilders of the income support distributed up until July 27. The accountants also looked into 143 of the 282 approved applicants for the unemployment support program.

They found that 27 applicants had not submitted a dismissal letter with a company stamp, one applicant submitted a dismissal letter that was not printed on the company’s letterhead and of four others the letter did not state that the dismissal was due to COVID-19.

SOAB found that 32 applicants were not eligible for assistance because they did not meet the requirements. Furthermore, their report states that 110 applications for unemployment support and 77 for income support were denied.

The St. Maarten Development Fund, tasked with the execution of these programs, received on May 18 4.1 million guilders from the government for the income and support program; two days later, the SMDF received 3.5 million for the unemployment support program.

These funds were parked in separate bank accounts. Up until July 27, the SMDF had spent 971,985 guilders from the account for income support, of which 970,763 guilders was paid out to applicants – 23 percent of the subsidy the SMDF received from the government.

The fund also spent 855,556 guilders so far on the unemployment support program; 854,613 guilders went to applicants – 24 percent of the subsidy SMDF received.


Related link: SOAB audit report on SSRP