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.


  1. Dubai World

    "Yesterday Dubai World, which is the investment arm of the Dubai emirate, asked its creditors to accept a six month freeze on interest due on its debt. That’s an admission Dubai is out of cash to make payments on its debt, and that it is de facto defaulting on this debt. It just isn’t using that word because it doesn’t want to trigger lots of nasty court claims from its creditors grabbing on to any collateral they can."

  2. Citibank's accountants must be happy. They have unloaded Viceroy Anguilla for US$400 million. Regrettably, I don't imagine there was much left over for Brad Korzen.

    Now the Ministry of Labour will have to deal with the Russians. How will they manage if the buyers turn out to be the heavies with lines like, "I don't know veser to have you shot or just to buy you off. Vitch do you sink vould be less bother?"

  3. Malliouhana Hotel has changed hands this week as well. The Roydens must be happy to have it off their hands.

    Hopefully the new owners will spend the money they saved with all the discounts they were given in upgrading and renovating. Anguilla’s once upon a time jewel in the crown is sorely in need of a freshening up.

  4. It is going to be very interesting to see if Hubert's government will do the right thing and insist that the Russians pay the 17.5% stamp duty and aliens landholding licence fees.

    That would be US$70 million -- enough to pay a lot of bills.

    Or will they do like Osborne and Victor and give it all away?

  5. So, with all this Russian money floating around, what about Altamer? They’ve been in limbo for 2 – 3 years now.

    And let’s see Hubert try to cancel Viceroy’s MOA now. The Russians tend not to negotiate – just cut off your head and feed to the sharks!

  6. I'm glad to hear this, and glad for Royden. He's tired, and I think sorta been feeling trapped with more responsibility than he needs at his age.

    A decent man who's made an immense contribution to the island.

  7. Flag, Cap Jaluca, Viceroy have all invested many millions of dollars and part of their business is the individual MOAs made with the Anguillian government of the day. These MOAs must in my opinion be upheld in any court of law.
    So threats to the devlopers to change existing MOAs will not work, however if leant on a developer can close or cocoon their business until more favourable times come along. So we must be careful not to upset Flag, Temenos, Cap Jaluca and Viceroy because they can close tomorrow if they wish and if they do so they could be closed for a few years as all economies worsen and our tourism lessens.

  8. It seems to me that the primary cause of this mess is equity. That is, if the "special", sweetheart deals made in the MOAs were available to *everyone*, Anguilla, like Hong Kong, Singapore, and New Zealand (all in the anglosphere, BTW), might be booming even now, defying a global depression, like they are doing, with our own economic growth.

    Instead, we now live in the bottom of a crab-bucket of "distributive justice". ("Distributive justice": Rawlsian crypto-Marx-lingo for envy and class-warfare.)

    Not only did GOA make deals instead of policy, it turned right around and declared an actual moratoria on growth at *exactly* the time real economic growth was taking off.

    Envy. Cronyism. Is *that* "what we do in Anguilla"?

  9. For more on property (and life; and liberty; and, speaking of fine hats, taxation) see: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=muHg86Mys7I

  10. "moratoria"
    Moratorium. Sue me. Take all my stuff. It's easy around here. :-)

  11. When do we wake up and start a positive program of new development directed at markets that are viable and provide positive numbers for Anguillas economy. Why do we spend so much time with blame and finger pointing. Let's get this show on the road. Who will lead us from a positive posture and out us back on the map?

  12. There will never be a penny from stamp duty on sale of the Viceroy. There are many ways of buying it w/o dealing with such a tax.

  13. If we do not get our 17.5% tax on the sale of Viceroy then they deserve the title of STENCH OF ANGUILLA and our government must stand down immediately.

  14. Somebody called me and said that Hubert was just on TV announcing a 5% "wage tax". Fact, or hyperactive rumor mill?

  15. I heard about this payroll deduction tax too. How many working people will now start companies and claim to be independent contractors to avoid being charged this tax?

    But starting a company is expensive, and not everyone knows how to do it. I'm going to start a company and sell shares in it to employees who want to become phony "contractors." The shares will be free, but shareholders have to pay me 1% instead of the 5% "Hubert Tax." Everybody wins except our genius Chief Minister, and I'll get rich. Woohoo!

  16. Do we now have an income tax in Anguilla?
    How disgusting adding taxes, Why? is this to pay for the overseas trips and expenses on government credit charge cards. We voted for change but not this stupidity, how do we get them out? never to return.

  17. Income taxes do not and have not made any country prosperous, the examples would be the UK, Europe, the USA etc, etc, etc. All Bankrupt and owe so much that it can never be paid back.
    So we know and can prove that taxes do and will not work.
    Look at the above countries and you will see that the taxes have been used a lot for fraudulent reasons such as Overseas travel,MPs expenses,obscenely high salaries and pensions for Ministers civil servants etc, Wars, bailouts for banks and other favoured entities much too numerous to mention. There are many reasons why taxes have not worked for the benefit of the respective countries but as we can see it will never work.When all you have as a government is taxes it shows total mismanagement, Borrowing upon borrowing will not work either as the above countries have shown us, they are now laying off hundreds of thousands of civil servants, this again shows mismanagement. Giving any government more of our money for them to do as they wish with, is not the answer. I believe that when all taxation is taken into consideration the UK takes about 80% of gross income, with income tax, plus petrol tax,plus vat,plus alcohol tax plus tobacco tax etc, etc etc. How silly can we be to ignore the obvious mistakes of the above countries regarding taxes.
    We must cut government spending and live within our means but that is just common sense as well as being the only way to prosperity.
    I thought that a change of government would bring about the changes we need but alas it is not.
    Ask yourself what will our government do with any extra monies?
    I am so sorry that this government has introduced an income tax, this is a terrible loss to us as a nation, what a terrible mistake.
    This government will not be remembered kindly.

  18. You have income tax because politicians are corrupt at the basic level. That is to say they will pander to you, the electorate to get-in or stay-in power. They know that people are always willing to take something which is "free" such as health care, retirement pensions and a myriad of social services. BUT YOU’RE SEEING IT IS NOT "FREE".

    You must decide what you’re willing to do without! Otherwise they will keep spoon feeding you today at the expense of tomorrow.....just like the other countries have done that June 22, 2010 6:41 PM tells of.

  19. This 5% wage tax is a tax too far. I can live with triple the property tax. I can cope with an extra 2% duty. But I am pissed that after promising he would not introduce any new types of taxes Hubert has introduced a wage tax. Part of what makes this so horrible is that once people accept a 5% wage tax it is easy to gradually increase it. The US income tax started at 1% but it was not long before it was up to 90%. And because wages and income are somewhat interchangable they will probably have to introduce an income tax. This is really bad. Time to sweep them out.

  20. If you have any principles left at all you aum ministers should resign after threatening to introduce an income tax. You have gone against your word, you can not be trusted, if you went in to government clean you can not go out of government clean after this decision.
    Anyone who votes for this can not come out of it clean. Resign all of you before voting yes in the house on the 28th June.
    Your campaign promises mean nothing, your words are tainted, Resign and let others try to save Anguilla.

  21. When times get hard, alcoholics do not reduce their consumption of alcohol...the will not cut back. They do not stare into the mirror and realize they are the problem. They will do everything they can to avoid the fact that they must change their behavior. They will borrow from friends to feed this disease. They will switch to something cheaper before they address the issue.

    Would they just keep on drinking the Rum if they could force you to give them money??? Would they make any of the hard choices to curb their destructive behavior? NO!!

    So it is with politicians, they do not cut back and they ask you for more so they can keep on with their life style. Recall them from office for violating the will of the people by increasing taxes and not cutting expenditures. You elected them to serve you, not be self serving.

  22. We will not have income tax. Hubert calls it a "stabilization levy."

    Wow, I feel better already.

  23. It's not just the politicians who are the "alcoholics", here. It's government employees. No matter how many fine hats and ribbons he wears, a hack is still a hack.

    We now have a dimension to the current dementia, though.

    At 5%, it takes twenty people actually working for a living to support one hack, er, civil servant. For most people living paycheck to paycheck, 5% is the difference between SPAM or ham for dinner. Or between electricity and rent.

    The hack, of course, eats steak. Public servant gotta keep his strength up, so he can expropriate better.

  24. We think our government works for us, well we had better wake up and realise that the government and the civil servants work for themselves only.
    It is a disgrace that our government is willing to tax us and then borrow as well to pay the payroll no matter what the consequences are.
    Never believe our politicians or civil servants if they say they are working on our behalf.
    We must find a way to rid ourselves of this stupidity.
    Where are the investigations?
    Where is the money they said they were going to claw back from previous politicians and the airport expansion?
    Where is the Freedom of information act? then we can see just what is being spent on overseas trips, the entourage and all associated expenses.
    All we see is Borrow, Borrow to keep paying the excessive payroll numbers.
    Afte the big boys spending you are being watched closely, We can not afford to pay this payroll, so instead of 1035 government workers how about seeing if we could pay 700 without a deficit.
    Help Anguilla, do not make it worse by more borrowing and taxing the people when you don't have to.

  25. This may create a problem of payout of pension benefit because of the high salaries but i think they need to bring the age down to 52.


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