Property Tax Axed …judge stops Gov’t

By Nikita Braxton-Benjamin
May 19, 2017 –

A HIGH COURT judge on Friday granted a stay of implementation and enforcement of the decision by Government that all property owners were required to complete and submit a Valuation Return Form.

The judgement, handed down by Justice Frank Seepersad, means that the June 5 extension given to citizens to present their documents to the Valuation Division of the Ministry of Finance for the calculation of the property’s Annual Rental Value, has been voided.

Full Article :

14 Responses to “Property Tax Axed …judge stops Gov’t”

  • Property tax can’t be implemented because the government still have land deeds stacked all over the place without proper digitalization. It is depending on the citizenry to present such documents.
    In addition to all of this there is the question of legality because the government appears to have ignored the letter of the law and proceeded forthwith with public haste in this cash grab. They were caught and as such must return to the Parliament to see further legal standing.
    As such property tax is a dead dud! An embarassment for the government.

    • As I said before the arrogant and dictatorial Minister of Finance must now resign for playing Parliament and putting the people under so much stress and uncertainty and politicising the legal challenge. This is a comedy of errors and horrors that any SEA student could have foreseen and avoided but not an MP with 25 years of parliamentary sojourn but dotish and stupid putting his Government on the chopping block unnecessarily.

      • He is the trump card in the Syrian hand so he ain’t going anywhere until Stuart is fully groomed. As for the joke imposed on the nation by this clown, abrogating the only protection citizens have from bad governance, the constitutional laws. Without laws printed fliers without name and address used to collect intensely personal and private information. All in the name of more money for this fiscally dangerous government to waste.

        The arrogance of it is found in the short man imposing an additional $10 billion in debt in just one year 2016. A record by any standard then grabbing headlines stating that after he over borrow money that he saved the nation $10 billion. Who is going to repay such huge interest when it is due? The fail saga of PNM bigotry remains unchanged despite governing this nation for over 37 years out of 50. This nation is heading for paraiah status where all fatted calves will be slaughtered to satisfy the monetary lust of this party….

  • Govt heads to Appeal Court
    Judge grants UNC stay in Property Tax challenge

    By Sascha Wilson
    Saturday, May 20, 2017

    Property owners can breathe a sign of relief after a High Court judge last evening granted a temporary halt with immediate effect to the enforcement and implementation of the Valuation Return Form, commonly called Property Tax Form.

    Justice Frank Seepersad granted the interim stay as he also granted leave to former agriculture minister Devant Maharaj to file for judicial review to challenge the legality of the process adopted to enforce the Property Tax law. The stay will remain in effect until May 31, when the case management conference is heard or until further order.

    However, in an immediate response last night acting Prime Minister and Finance Minister Colm Imbert announced that they will appeal the matter. The appeal has been listed for 9 am before the Court of Appeal on Monday.
    Full Article :

  • Amendment to the Act has to be done legally and not politically for the 2016/7 implementation prior to garnering the collection of monies. Sadly, this is for residential properties only and not commercial or industrial properties. This means this has to go back to Parliament, the problem is the Government is weary of this getting through failing which would be egg on their face.

  • Political battles and struggles are not won in one sitting,some are willing to sleep with the devil to achieve their goals, once again we are seeing a dangerous paradigm involving the judiciary, where the laws can be manipulated to satisfy private ideals, and in so doing putting the individual before the best interest of the country.In cases like this, no one judge should be able to decide, but higher group of judges voting on a concrete decision.We continue to see a very high level of political grandstanding that have no place whatsoever in an independent judiciary,but then again in T&T, the seat of law can be used for whatever purpose needed.Long term the ,the judiciary is heading down a very slippery slope,if politics continue to effect judgements pertaining to the well being of the state.Hotep.

    • Brother the Appeal Court consists of three judges where your collectivity criteria will be met but the issue is so clear and simple on the question of the legality of the Act and use of politics to get around the Act by the Minister of Finance that the Appeal Court will not change the price of this cocoa and this so called law will be consigned to the dustbin of parliamentary history because it was bad law passed around Xmas time when intoxication is at its highest in sweet T&T and people are concerned exclusively with getting a piece of pork or souse and bills are a no-go.

    • What specific evidence can you offer to prove that politics affected this decision?
      Do you have inside information related to the political affiliation of this judge?
      Have you read the 16 page judgement brought down by this judge?
      Since you are in the business of making assumptions, can I assume that your conclusions are political?

      • I do not think that this blog asks for facts to prove an opinion. Knowledge is the best facts one can wish for. Along with knowledge, general consensus can always validate or reject a proposition. The judiciary, as currently staffed does not create a feeling of competence and confidence in anything they do, because judgements appear to be a purchasable commodity. Names of judges can easily be identified with questionable rulings. Who knows what took place behind the scenes?

  • This Government is making fools of themselves by telling lies on the property tax. Attorney Deborah Peake tried to fool Justice Seepersad by saying that the current exercise was a voluntary exercise after the Minister of Finance said in Parliament that it was the First Phase of the Implementation of the Property Tax Act no 18 of 2009.
    How can a voluntary scheme have two deadlines and where does Cabinet get the authority to change these deadlines? Imbert changed from First Phase to Information Gathering and was making it up along thwe way.
    Here comes the AG with his lie that the Judge only put the Press Release on hold when the Judge said the whole exercise relating to the submission of the Return Forms to the Valuation Division must cease immediately until 31 May 2017 and quashed both deadlines because they were not founded on a legaL Platform and therefore trivial and vexatious and of no import. Attorneys are fleecing the state with their self-serving advice geared to fill their pockets in telling the Minister he can can proceed in the first instance. Any SEA student will have realised that the law has lapsed and need to be amended and updated.



  • No urgency for property tax case
    The Government’s bid to overturn an injunction to resume the property tax drive hit a snag yesterday after the Court of Appeal ruled the matter was not urgent enough to be heard immediately.

    • It was urgent enough for the Court of Appeal to take the case of the Property Tax injunction but it was not urgent enough to entertain an appeal by the Government? Wow!!!
      Whose side is the Courts on? Certainly not the people’s side. People are worried about many aspects of the taxation of their properties policies. The Courts stop the government’s taxation Plan with not discernible arguments to warrant it’s merit to stop it, but considers it unimportant to resolve the issue?

      This folks is our judiciary at work. And there are those who say that it is not political? They could fool me. I wonder which side are they on? Or maybe they have already spoken loudly enough to answer that question.

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