Guernsey Press

P&R can't ignore the cash poor

AT A TIME when many are already on the breadline, struggling to survive, let alone thrive, any proposed tax hikes are never going to be welcome.


So it is no surprise that there has been some immediate resistance to the increase in property taxes proposed by Policy & Resources in its draft Budget, unveiled on Tuesday.

P&R has defended its proposed TRP hike – by an average of 17% across all residential properties, with increases of between 10% and 44% on homes of above average size – calling them ‘only a small increase in monetary terms for most properties’.

It claims that those who own larger properties ‘are likely to be able to afford the additional amount’.

However, Deputy Peter Roffey is not so sure. He's concerned about the impact on asset-rich, cash-poor pensioners and is considering a move to block the proposal unless a scheme is introduced to allow them to put off paying TRP, instead making it recoverable from their estate when they die.

For less affluent pensioners who happen to own their own home, he believes it ‘could be the difference between poverty and a decent standard of living’ .

P&R has responded by saying it is open to discussing such a scheme. Bearing in mind that the elderly represent a significant proportion of Guernsey’s electorate, it would probably be wise to keep them on side.