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Feb 2, 2018

Cities and Towns Doing More for Themselves

Dean Barrow

Belize’s two cities and seven towns have been clamoring for greater autonomy. Belize City, under Darrell Bradley’s leadership, led the way with the installment of the twenty-million dollar municipal bond to fix hundreds of streets. Last year, the government amended legislation giving towns like San Ignacio and Santa Elena the ability to borrow and obtain funding similarly to Belize City and Belmopan. More administrative and financial functions have also been passed to them, including collection of liquor license monies and taxes. But the effort to reform two primary sources of revenue, trade license and property tax legislation, has stalled, and we asked Prime Minister Dean Barrow what the central government intends doing about it.

 

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“There are certain things that require the endorsement of the central government as a matter of law; I think for example of things like by-laws having to do with zoning; certainly you mentioned the area of taxation. The bottom-line is that we have always worked extremely closely with the City Council in every way and that certainly will continue.”

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