Sleepless over Property Tax

Karen Nunez-Tesheira and PM Patrick Manning
Karen Nunez-Tesheira and PM Patrick Manning
THE EDITOR: I am a small businessman running a corner shop from a small place underneath my house. When election called, I was hoping that there would have been much talk about property tax but what I am hearing is a very little. The new tax is a very worrisome proposal. I am about to finish paying my mortgage in the next two years. My wife and I working hard, let go all luxuries, saved money, cent by cent to pay up mortgage in 20 years.

Now I am losing my sleep with the worries if PNM wins, I have to start paying increased property tax. What it means is that I have to start back to work harder even after paying mortgage.

I am neither rich nor poor. I am not a retiree so I have no chance of relief. PNM wants to squeeze every penny possible from my hard worked savings. What I do not understand is that for collecting a few hundred million dollars of tax (almost nothing compared to what this government is spending out in excess of everything — summit, stadium, big buildings etc.), they want to invade our privacy.



14 thoughts on “Sleepless over Property Tax”

  1. Toll tax coming says Manning
    After assuring supporters that the proposed property tax would still be introduced if the People’s National Movement (PNM) returns to government, Prime Minister Patrick Manning revealed that a toll tax will have to be paid by motorists using six new highway systems…

    …Citizens to pay more for healthcare
    ONCE the National Health Service (NHS) comes into effect, people will have to pay more for health care, according to information obtained by the Express.

  2. Quoting Mr. Patrick Manning:

    “there is none so blind as those who have eyes and cannot see”

  3. Are we then to assume that the present government does not think that Trinidadians – notice I did not say any race for my belief is that there is no one here in trinidad that is truly one race we are all mixed with something – should not have homes, land, businesses and that it is just for a small clique as Mr. Rowley says.

    Wake up and smell the coffee if the present government comes back it property tax, no work for the citizens, more empty buildings…. please let it end on May 24, 2010

  4. There have been property taxes in Trinidad and Tobago as long as I can remember.It was once the basis of having a vote. Even as a small child of five, I knew my parents had to pay land tax,on our property in Hardbargain. That was in the forties. Of course people were supposed to pay water rates also, and for electricity. For a long time, our people got away without paying because the collection system was vy-ke-vye, and there were few penalties for not paying. Even in the 1980’s the phone company cut off some government offices’ phones because they had not paid their bill.The attitude was How dare you?
    We have developed without paying our fair share of the fare for anything.

    The Trini who moves to the US, Canada or elsewhere, soon discovers that they have to pay up.
    I pay taxes, for the hospital system, for the cost of producing potable water, for garbage collection,for the school district, although I have had no children in school in many many years.I pay for the highways through my gasoline taxes, I pay for state services through sales taxes, but my property tax bill is one of the largest, after income tax.My pension is taxed.

    People complain about it all the time, that is the way people are, but we all know that taxes are necessary.

    One tenth of one percent of the value of your house and land, is the tax in some areas. The county’s eveluators use Google Earth, real estate sales, and other data to check on houses, They also have door to door people checking. All improvements are taxed. Seniors have their taxes frozen on their primary residence. If you do not pay your property taxes, your home could be sold to recoup them.

    Still, there are all these Trinis wanting to come live in the US, where they will end up paying up to 30% of their earnings in income tax, and in some states, even food sales are taxed In some states, clothes and shoes are not taxed, but socks ae.
    Two things are certain, death, and taxes, and death is taxed in estate taxes.

    Pay up people,or propose some more innovative and equitable way of covering the costs of hospitals, roads, subsidized water, electricity and the other services we could not afford as individuals.

    1. I have to agree with you on this one. Everybody is trying to run to the United States to pay Uncle Sam. Property taxes in the U.S. are way more expensive than in TNT and have nothing to do with the value of the U.S. Dollar. As low as 10-15 TNT a month is a steal.

  5. If Patrick Manning comes in power just save all the cents and pay the property tax with that because that is what i’ll be doing they wouldn’t get a dollar out of me .

  6. Property tax is paid in America we’ll know that but the citizen can see where their tax are going. but in trinidad it just going in project manager pocket, while he spend the money on wasteful stuff. And they need to wake up and realise that this is Trinidad Not AMERICA

    1. You are right, but globalization has changed everything. Land is always valuable and foreign nationals are always on the hunt. Elected officials must be held accountable. That does not alter the fact that revnue must be generated in order to provide goods, and services that the people need and must have.

  7. Ms Edwards I agree with you as from my research, property tax has existed in Trinidad but very few actually paid attention to it. Furthermore I lived in the UK for a few years and I was amazed at HOW MANY TAXES they pay, especially if you live in London.

    Personally, I see the property tax as the only option the PNM has. They never expected the price of oil to crash and that is affecting their programs and mega projects. NO I dont agree with NAPA or Torouba, BUT those projects need to finish and GATE,HYPE and CDAP need to continue running (and that will cost money). Nothing in life is free, the money has to come from somewhere!

    1. I am not endorsing the PNM, but I can understand the frustration that the PNM must have when it comes to generating and rationing revenue. People don’t want to pay any taxes, but they want all of the goods and services of the U.S. which is not feasable unless the government can generate revenue from another source.
      Wealthy contributors to the PNM get what they want because they are the onse that produce the money for things to happen. If TNT moves to abolish property taxes and or refuses to rais the current rates, then nothing will never be accomplished no matter who is PM.

    2. “Nothing in life is free; the money has to come from somewhere!”- Dexter
      That is absolutely correct. Oil and Natural Gas doesn’t make enough money to pay for all of the things that Trinbagonians think should be supplied by the government.
      The PNM may have promised too much when they sought foreign investment, but who will Kamla look for investment from? What kind of implications will that pose to the nation fiscally and socially? She has already said that there will be no property tax increases. This is probably one of the toughest decisions of my lifetime.

  8. THANK YOU CURTIS!!!! Somebody else sees my point of view…Trinidad must be the only country where people want handouts and EXTENSIVE state funded projects…but refuse to pay taxes. If Kamla wins I WANT TO SEE how she is achieving her goals with… the low price of oil, a dying agricultural system that imploded on itself, a generally POOR work ethic by the population, and an overated tourism sector. Show me the money Kamla……….

    1. Overrated tourism sector? I didn’t know that it was rated. Trinidad and Tobago needs to offer something unique. However, if politicians are unwilling to take risk, nothing will change. Agribusinesses are dying in TNT. Carnival, well, you compare it to carnival years ago and argue whether it is modernizing or assimilating to something else. TNT is suffering an identity crisis. Is it a tourist economy, energy producing nation, industrialized nation, etc….? The main problem is that it does none of the previously mentioned extremely well.
      There needs to be a complete overhaul of what has been happening to the country. It’s going to take work from everyone in order for everyone to prosper. The lazy will be left out (hopefully unable to use race as a factor) and the weak will be taken care of. That’s my vision. The question still remains and I’ll state it in the words of the old Wendy’s commercial,” Where’s the beef?” Perhaps more recently said in the Hollywood blockbuster movie Jerry Maguire,” Show Me the Money!”
      People must be involved no matter who wins because it is a matter of life and death. No handouts, but hand ups. Taxes must be raised and promises fulfilled. If you’re not a part of the solution, then you are a part of the problem. The government needs money from its citizens in order to fulfill its promises no matter what party wins the election.

  9. Hello everyone. I see the the outside world has managed to open you a can of worms. Do yourselves a favor and don’t eat from it you will never recover. We are learning this lesson now. Don’t be so quick to apply taxes to your brothers and sisters (your country men). Here in the U.S. every state that applied taxes to high is now bankrupt just a matter of time. The states that have very low tax rates are doing fine and are in surplus. Taxes must be implemented INDIRECTLY meaning on goods like fuel ( to fix roads), clothing (pay for schools), grooming products& fast food to go for (hospitals)etc. All employees of the State should be income taxed as the income came from the people, this tax should help (re-supplement state administration wages). But only things that you can do without should be LOWLY taxed to keep money moving. Tax to high and you will get a artificial recession people wont spend or have nothing to spend. Necessities MUST not be taxed. This will keep the poor afloat. This would be grocery food. Land;If taxed should only be taxed on purchase NOT on sales. When people buy it’s cause they have. If they sell it might be for personal hard times. The money from the sale will enter the economy and get taxed indirectly, just be patient it will be there in a steady flow which keeps the markets moving. Taking money directly from employees (direct income tax) in the private sector (THOSE THAT DON’T WORK IN GOV. STATE JOBS) is THEFT!!!!. It is half why the U.S. is sinking. The other half is direct GREED from congress. It is how they are pulling the money out of circulation from over printing TAX TAX TAX this is the only reason for direct income tax. You are not in this predicament. There must be no annual property tax. If a citizen losses his job he can’t pay the gov. will foreclose, this is THEFT!!! and you will be responsible for the homeless. This is bad for tourism. They paid for it so they should not rent they own. Property tax is leasing of property. Think about it. Don’t be so quick to screw yourselves just because the good old U.S. imprisons and steals from it’s people (SHEEP) and the rest of the world, and who care what the rest of the world does or thinks doesn’t mean you all should jump off the same bridge. DON’T GET LOANS FORM FOREIGN BANKERS. Biggest mistake you can make. They will have no remorse or mercy when your go bankrupt and they will FORECLOSE. Don’t you get it? They will say it happened of your own free will now take you dues and had over your country. This is the object, to reclaim their claim. Don’t barrow what you can’t pay. A eye will cost you a eye a leg and three fingers. If you must barrow, barrow for a offshore oil well. This will bring in revenue and pay itself. But don’t barrow for things that will erode like streets and light posts this will not repay itself. Use the tax from tourism like the places they go like the beach and down town, use this sales tax from these places to build infrastructure. Remember be yourselves people don’t want to go to a place like the one they just came from. If you loose you identity you loose your tourism. By the way why don’t you grow coffee or cocoa or tobacco, cane for rum. Take the revenue from tourism just for a while and plant these fields. Feed yourselves be self sufficient. Most of all t&t, make sure your financial laws of currency have no crack or holes never let anyone outside entity print your money no mater how good it sounds. If you make this mistake you will be slaves too. If you back it up with the commodities I just mentioned above it will be as good as gold. Do not except other countries currencies make them exchange to spend this will make a demand for your currency and make it a little stronger on the spot market. You are young build your freedom it’s not free (blood, sweet and tears) don’t be beggars be proud. The gov. can’t give you anything it didn’t take from you first. It needs you to survive and you need it to protect you from foreign greed. They have there eye on you. We never appreciate what we don’t have until we don’t have it. The U.S. is 51% beggars now and 49% hard worker the exact reflection of our past election. Sadly on our way to socialism. If you must look outside T&T look to learn what not to do. I would rather be there than here. Good Luck be Free its the gift of God. Remember those that are so quick to be taxes are either ignorant of tax law or socialists. When you agree to property tax the gov. puts your property on it’s list of collateral it’s not yours no more you are now leasing. It then creates a bond and places it on the world wide market for sale to create a revenue. When the gov. can’t pay for redemption or bonds or goes bankrupt a foreigner will foreclose on your property and say it was of your own free will and it wasn’t your land anyways. This is how foreign bankers secretly over take other countries and of your own free will. They will lend you into a depression and you will turn on each other poor against rich and beg for socialism. Socialism is King and peasants no middle class and no chance to rise to another level. THINK THINK THINK. Good luck.

    With best wishes your friend
    RP U.S.A.

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