19 June, 2010
When our property rights cease to exist: We are looking at our constitutionally protected property rights under the 1982 Anguilla Constitution. We have seen that section 7 enshrines our fundamental right to the ownership of personal property. The Constitution goes on to set out a number of exceptions to this protection of our property rights. The first and most obvious one is where we are obliged by a law to satisfy any tax or rates. If the House of Assembly passes a law that we must pay house tax, we cannot complain that this is a confiscation of our property. In our case, we have the Valuation and Rating Act which sets out government's right to calculate our annual property tax.
So, in addition to the government’s right to have parliament pass a law to take away our property, with compensation, there is also a standing series of laws that impose taxes, licences, and rates on us. We must pay them, or pay the penalty. The Constitution says they are not an infringement of our rights.