‘We’ve listened to the public’ – tax review 2.0 published today
LONG-AWAITED proposals to significantly increase how much tax the States takes from local residents are being published at midday today.
The two politicians leading the plans, Policy & Resources president Peter Ferbrache and Employment & Social Security president Peter Roffey, said that they had learned from previous experience of the tax review in 2021, which they pulled under pressure from public, the wider States and within their own policy group, and a consultation exercise from earlier this year.
‘We have cut off the fat, we have listened, as we should do,’ said Deputy Ferbrache at a media briefing on Saturday.
‘If our package was the same we’d be accused of not listening, and we have improved the package considerably.’
Deputies Ferbrache and Roffey said they had been informed by public dialogue.
‘The drop-ins were very helpful and most people were constructive.’
They said that eight out of 10 people who attended drop-ins and spoke to senior politicians accepted that taxes needed to rise. ‘Though many people said they didn’t want GST too.’
Deputy Ferbrache said if any tax increases, intended to fill a structural deficit imminent in government finances, were approved by the States, it was intended that they would come in by April 2025 – just a few weeks before the 2025 general election.
He admitted that the deadline was tight and any further delays brought about by States members would mean that this deadline would not be met – and that tax would become the number one election issue.
‘The advice we have had is that we should be able to do it by then, but we cannot delay debate any longer,’ he said.
The proposals are published by the States at noon today. We will have coverage on guernseypress.com at noon and in Tuesday’s Guernsey Press.