Finance Minister Curtis Dickinson stated last night, that he is “appreciative of the concerns that some have recently expressed about the new land tax structure”.
Responding to concerns on the impact of this new tax structure on seniors, the Minister said: “As we continue to address our challenges, it is not our intention to bring hardship on anyone, especially our seniors.
“Our focus remains on growing the economy, creating jobs, and reducing the national debt, and we will continue to work for the betterment of everyone.”
With Bermuda’s multi-billion dollar debt topping the list of priorities, the Minister said: “Putting together our current budget was a challenging exercise, one in which we have tried to achieve balance, wherein we had to gain additional revenue while minimizing any potential negative impact on the economy.
“We were very mindful of the human impact that our budget would have as we took a number of actions to address the islands fiscal challenges; among them our national debt.
“As we go about solving these issues we have not forgotten the needs of our citizens, especially our seniors. While we must all contribute to the solution, any tax increases in this budget were designed to be mostly borne by those who can most afford to pay them.
“With respect to land tax, in an effort to be fair, they were increased across the board, and the new rate structure ensures that the smallest burden was placed on properties with an annual rental value (ARV) of up to $22,000.
“Our seniors will continue to be granted relief from land tax on their primary residences,with an exemption for properties with an ARV of $45,500 or less. If a senior’s primary residence has an ARV above the $45,500 exemption limit, taxes are payable on the excess amount. https://www.gov.bm/land-tax
“As we continue to address our challenges, it is not our intention to bring hardship on anyone, especially our seniors. Our focus remains on growing the economy, creating jobs, and reducing the national debt, and we will continue to work for the betterment of everyone.”