EPOC continues oversight as Fiscal Commission’s office being set up Loop Jamaica

The content originally appeared on: Jamaica News Loop News

Head of the Economic Programme Oversight Committee (EPOC), Keith Duncan, says Jamaica’s first Fiscal Commissioner, Courtney Williams, should begin his full duties by December of this year, as his office space continues to be established.

In the Interim, EPOC will continue its oversight duties ahead of a full transition to the Fiscal Commission, which is headed by Williams who was sworn into the position on March 3 of this year.

In the role, Williams will be the guardian and interpreter of Jamaica’s fiscal rules, and will be required to monitor adherence to these rules and provide an independent assessment of budgetary outcomes, in addition to independent analysis.

The Fiscal Commission role will be to effectively replace EPOC.

Duncan, in commenting on the overall developments at a press briefing staged by EPOC on Thursday, said a full transition from EPOC to the Fiscal Commission should occur later this year.

“The office (of the Fiscal Commission) is being set up, and we expect by maybe December that the office will be up and running,” said Duncan.

“EPOC will transition and the fiscal commissioner will take his rightful role in guarding the fiscal rules,… and they (the commission) will provide oversight of the Government of Jamaica’s fiscal rules and under the fiscal responsibility laws,” he added.

Williams began his public sector career as Senior Fiscal Economist in the Fiscal Policy Management Unit (FPMU) of the Ministry of Finance in 1995. He served as Senior Director of the FPMU from 2005 – 2016.

He was appointed Deputy Financial Secretary, Technical Advisory Coordination in the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service in January 2020, and that same year was appointed Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of National Security until his appointment as Fiscal Commissioner.