There are three issues here: cause and effect, the distribution of costs, and proportionality.
We know well about the removal of the local government fund, for which the Local Property Tax was to replace. This was a Central Government decision.
Now there is the issue of the hole blown in our budget, by the statewide “Globalisation of Rates” for certain commercial entities. Another Central Government decision, and cause of problems, whose effects we are supposed to solve.
In terms of the distribution of costs:
Over the past few years, National Income has fallen by about 10%. This is in addition to what are called Policy Induced Losses… from the legion of so-called small charges and cuts; these amount to about a further 10% for an average family, to 20% for unemployed singles.
What concerns me, is that in voting for an increase, we are in principle validating this entire system.
We are also setting a precedent. New charges rarely go other than in one direction – up.
This is in addition to the danger of increasing property prices, bumping people into higher tax brackets – without a corresponding increase of income.
In terms of proportionality: if it’s mentioned about the seeming smallness of the change – but then we need to look at the other end of the scale too.
Aside from the obvious Billions associated with Bank BaiIouts and the Apple deal: I notice that we have reduced the outstanding balance owed of Development Levys from about €24 Million, to €11 Million, for example.
There may have been reasonable grounds for this.
But it just seems, that when it comes to the Billions and the Millions, we have no problem being flexible.
When it comes to the hundreds of thousands however, we and the people we represent, are supposed to be on the hook – for dealing with effects which, again, we are not the cause of.
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