Cash Handout Might Be Delayed Until April: Ker 朝野分歧 柯建銘:可能拖到4月才能發現金

The KMT is advocating a universal handout of NT$10,000 but DPP Legislator Ker Chien-ming said there is no hope that the review can be concluded by Jan. 19. This means that people will not receive the handout until April.

KMT legislators held red envelopes and signs as they called for a universal cash handout of NT$10,000 during a legislative review of the special regulations for the upcoming cash handout. They said this can be achieved without loans.

William Tseng, Legislator (KMT): “The excess part, that part that exceeds the NT$140 billion annual budget, can be borrowed from the Ministry of Finance and state treasury through short-term dispatching. The treasury will be repaid on Aug. 1, so there won't be any financial issues.”

National Development Minister Kung Ming-hsin said when people will receive the handout will depend on when the special regulations on the handout are passed by the legislature. The parent law has to be passed before ministries can start budget preparations based on the parent law. Different political parties have submitted different versions. DPP Legislator Ker Chien-ming said it's impossible for a third reading to be completed by Jan. 19 and said the whole issue may drag on until April.

Ker Chien-ming, Legislator (DPP): “Everyone has opinions on the budget, so it has to be reviewed by committees. Once it's reviewed, it will go out of the committees and to a full vote in one month. Under this timetable, the earliest is about April. It has to go through this process.”

There will be three ways to receive the cash. People can apply online to have the money directly deposited into their bank accounts. They can also withdraw cash through an ATM or apply at a post office. Digital Affairs Minister Audrey Tang said the system will go online on Feb. 28 but when the money will actually reach the hands of the people will depend on the budget timetable.

Audrey Tang, Digital Affairs Minister: “The instructions that we received said that the testing of the system needs to be completed by the end of February. The actual handout schedule will depend on the budget schedule.”

Ker went back and forth between party caucuses during the meeting. He said ruling and opposition parties will never reach a consensus, but the regulations will be sent to committees for review once each party has its say.