Archive for the 'Parliament' Category

Constitutional Commission (CRC) Re-Invented the Wheel

By Stephen Kangal
February 14, 2014

Stephen KangalHaving submitted what is no more than disappointing glorified minutes or executive summary of the deliberations of the CRC on the road map to reforming the existing 1967 Republican Commission without appending the requisite draft Working Paper it appears that the remit of the CRC in its own admission has ended. But why is the CRC still bent on holding further consultations on previous consultations when it admits it has completed its job? According to the CRC the next step to be taken falls within the ambit of parliamentarians and the population.
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Briefing on the Property Tax

By Stephen Kangal
September 27, 2013

Current Status of Property Tax Legislation

Stephen KangalAt present there are no laws in our statute books empowering the state to demand and collect property taxes except Act No.17 of 2009 that amended the Valuation of Land Act and Act No.18 of 1969 (The Valuation of Land Act). Those other pre-2010 laws have been repealed by the passing and promulgation of Act 18 of 2009. The Laws repealed at the end of 2009 were:
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Donkey with a kick

By Raffique Shah
September 14, 2013

Raffique ShahWhen House Speaker Wade Mark invoked the contentious constitutional provision that an elected MP, Herbert Volney in this instance, must vacate his seat upon resigning or being expelled from the party on whose slate he was elected to Parliament, it piqued my interest. You see, I was a principal player in the events that led to the passage of that amendment to the Constitution in 1978, and I am intimate with its genesis.
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Opposition Fails to Vote

By Andre Bagoo
September 12, 2013 – newsday.co.tt

ParliamentOPPOSITION and Independent Senators were caught napping early yesterday morning when they missed their chance to formally oppose historic legislation introducing proportional representation to the system of local government.

During a marathon 17-hour sitting of the Senate, which began on Tuesday and ended at 3.15 am yesterday, the senators had vociferously objected to the Municipal Corporations (Amendment) Act 2013, the unprecedented legislation which introduces a system of proportional representation for the selection of aldermen.
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There’s is No Solace in the Land and Building Taxes Regime

By Stephen Kangal
September 11, 2013

Stephen KangalThe heart and soul, indeed the single most important determining factor in the calculation of the quantum of property taxation for each property is the year in which the requisite rental value -driven valuation was completed and applied. Finance Minister Larry Howai alluded to the fact that by the time residential properties are brought to book again by 2017 the relevant requisite up-to-date valuations will have been completed.
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$61 billion Budget

By Andre Bagoo
September 10 2013

ParliamentFINANCE Minister Larry Howai yesterday unveiled a $61.4 billion budget, yet again the largest in the country’s history.

The 2014 package — the PP Government’s fourth — includes what the Minister said was also the largest-ever capital programme of $8 billion. However, the deficit projection will shrink relative to overall productivity coming in at $6.3 billion or 3.6 percent of GDP.
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Speaker Puts Out Volney

By Sean Douglas
September 10, 2013 – newsday.co.tt

GordonSpeaker Wade Mark removed St Joseph MP Herbert Volney, “with immediate effect” from the House of Representatives moments after yesterday’s Budget Speech, in an unprecedented invocation of the “Crossing of the Floor” provisions of the Constitution.

Volney resigned from the United National Congress (UNC) — on which ticket he had been elected to the House on May 24, 2010 – after being fired as Justice Minister over the “section 34” scandal, and has since joined the Independent Liberal Party (ILP).
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Governing the ungovernable

By Raffique Shah
September 08, 2013

Raffique ShahRather than re-shuffle her Cabinet for a third time in three years, Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar should have considered resigning and calling fresh general elections.

By an annual tinkering with her appointees and their portfolios, the PM has all but admitted she is incapable of leading the country, which, really, is nothing to be ashamed of. The great Eric Williams often complained this country was ungovernable. It still is.
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Proportional representation major change in TT politics

By Andre Bagoo
September 1, 2013 – newsday.co.tt

ParliamentPARLIAMENT will meet this week to vote on unprecedented legislation seeking to reform local government by introducing a system of proportional representation.

The reforms were unveiled by Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar at a post-Cabinet media briefing on Thursday. It is proposed that aldermen — who are currently hand-picked by elected councillors — be chosen based on how many votes each party ends up getting overall.
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All hail king Carmona

By Suzanne Mills
August 09, 2013 – newsday.co.tt

President Anthony CarmonaI’m beginning to believe that President Anthony Carmona thinks he is still a judge, that Trinidad and Tobago is his courtroom and that we are all before him on a charge.

“Madam,” he chided Opposition Whip, Marlene McDonald last Friday as he addressed the opening of Parliament, “I am speaking about conduct!”
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