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Apr 23, 2021

Usher Reveals 50-year Tax Waiver for Nature Conservancy

Henry Charles Usher

While the Lands Department is beefing up its tax collection unit, area rep for Fort George, Henry Charles Usher is blaming the former administration for the current land tax deficit.  Usher revealed that the former administration signed off on fifty years’ worth of land tax for two hundred and sixty thousand acres of land bought by a private agency.  According to Usher, the lands were bought in October of 2020, just weeks before the General Elections.  In addition, the U.D.P. administration gave the company exclusive rights to sell the carbon credits of the property.


Henry Charles Usher, Area Representative, Fort George

“I hold here Madam Speaker, an agreement signed between the Government of Belize and Nature Conservancy. This agreement was signed on the nineteenth day of October 2020. I believe parliament was dissolved on the sixth of October 2020. So this agreement came after parliament was dissolved and just before a General Election. And this agreement Madam Speaker was signed on behalf of the government of Belize, by the member for Corozal North who was then the Minister of Natural Resources. The reason I bring up this agreement Madam Speaker because incredibly in this agreement, two hundred and sixty thousand acres of land was acquired by the Nature Conservancy. In the agreement government agrees to remit, to waive and exempt the payment and stamp duty on these properties for a term of fifty years. The government agrees, waives and exempt land tax for a period of fifty years. Waiving land tax for fifty years Madam Speaker for fifty years for his group, for fifty years waiving tax duty. Madam Speaker, to make it worse the carbon rights for these properties. The government of Belize signed by the member for Corozal permitted the trustee to retain, exercise and transfer to them the carbon rights on the trust properties. And the exclusive right to perfect market and sell any and all carbon credits or offsets. Couple that with the write off of land tax that was done by the previous administration. Ninety million last year and so much more before then. Couple that with now the waiver of land tax, and we see that they were not serious about collecting land tax, and that is why we are where we are with a huge bill for the land tax to be collected.”

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