No money grab

THERE WILL BE RELIEF from July paydays for property owners with high land tax bills, says Minister in the Ministry of Finance Ryan Straughn.

He said the savings Barbadians would be making in their income tax deductions, particularly middle-income earners would more than makeup for the hike in taxes on their properties.

Straughn’s comments, in an interview with the Daily Nation, came against an avalanche of complaints by several property owners on social media and the radio call-in programmes. The higher bills, which were circulated from late May, have been termed a “money grab” by some. Middle-income earners, in particular, complained of being unreasonably squeezed, while others have stated the increase amounted to penalising property owners for being successful in “owning a piece of the rock”.

The increase in property taxes were announced by Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Mia Mottley in her March Budget. She stated that properties valued over $450 000 and up to $800 000 would attract an increased rate, from 0.45 to 0.52 per cent, this fiscal year 2019-2020.