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Nov 1, 2019

Land Tax Amnesty Programme Extended

Wilfred Elrington

In early October, the government announced that it will be implementing the Land Tax Amnesty Programme after it was passed by the House and approved by the Senate in September. The programme raised eyebrows as to who will benefit since the government is writing off millions of dollars in taxes. Landowners who owe land taxes will be able to settle or manage arrears during six months that started on October seventh, 2019. The deadline was originally the ending in December this year but a statutory instrument which was gazetted on October twenty-sixth and signed by the Ministry of Lands, Hugo Patt extends the programme. The deadline is now June first.  Cabinet Minister Wilfred Elrington says there isn’t anything negative about the programme.

 

Wilfred Elrington, Foreign Affairs Minister

“I always think that it is good when Belizeans have an opportunity to have some bargains, assistance with paying their debts and obligations to government. Many people have so many other obligations that they don’t find it easy to pay land taxes and the like particularly on lands which may not be as productive as could possibly be with better training and development. I don’t see anything negative about it.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“So I take it that you don’t share the view that it more benefits the moneyed land owners.”

 

Wilfred Elrington

“Well there can be doubt that moneyed land owners will be benefitting but it also benefits people who are poor and low and find difficulty in paying their taxes. I don’t tend to watch what happens with respect to others and I certainly don’t begrudge others what they get. If they assistance is being afforded across the board for everybody I can’t find any fault with it.


Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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