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Graduate University’s budget being slashed by ¥3.1 billion

Date Posted: 2009-10-15

The knives are sharp as the Minister of State for Administrative Reform tears through the 2009 Supplementary Budget, reevaluating projects for funding and cutting more than three billion yen from the planned Okinawa Science and Technology Graduate University.

Minister of State for Administrative Reform Yoshito Sengoku has told Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama about his plans, calling the graduate university’s maintenance promotion budget useless, advising “we need to avoid wasteful spending”. He’s cutting the budget by ¥3.1 billion, a part of ¥2,516,900,000,000 in total. The hefty trimming represents a 27.4% cut to the supplementary budget.

Hatoyama has told other ministers to look at even more cuts in their individual ministry budgets. “We need to cut more,” he says, with a target cut of ¥3,000,000,000,000. The new Prime Minister’s plan is to transform the budget cuts into money to pay for children’s nursing allowances and public high schools going tuition free starting next year.

Okinawa Prefecture maintains it needs about ¥7.1 trillion next year, but budget cuts are leaving the island prefecture with only ¥2,516,900,000,000. Prefecture office directors are discontent, noting “this graduate university has been one of Okinawa’s largest promotion plan’s top ideas, and a most important facility for Okinawa. Why the government says it’s a waste of money, we don’t understand.” Another ¥800 million in dam construction and other public works projects are being cut, too.

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