Guernsey Press

Is this the future without GST?

STATES committees have listed millions of pounds of hypothetical savings they could or would make if the new goods and services tax proposals do not get through the States next year, including closing a school, charging for some secondary healthcare, and paid parking.


All principal committees were asked to outline potential savings at 5, 10 and 15%. Policy & Resources is now saying that if it was to close the funding gap through cuts alone, they would need to be at 13% across all committee budgets.

‘The committee wishes to stress that it is not intending to propose such significant budget reductions,’ P&R said in its report.

‘However, it is important to outline what measures would need to be taken should it be necessary to make substantial reductions in committee budgets in order to fund the known cost increases as a result of the ageing population and policy decisions already taken.

'This is so that we have a clearer understanding of the consequences of a choice between

reduced services and increased taxation.’

They outlined savings across four areas:

  • cost savings which will not impact the level of service received by the population;

  • restrictions in access to public services, including means-testing;

  • reductions in public services, reducing service levels or withdrawing them;

  • revenue generation, where fees or charges would be introduced for services currently free.

The committees all complained that there would be very significant consequences for public services if such cuts were made, and said it would be

counter-productive to publish them.

But P&R said it was important to illustrate the extent of cuts to ‘help the States to decide whether to impose new and increased taxation on the community’.