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£50 Sewerage Charge


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'No-one wants to pay for things they have previously had free of charge but we have to do it.' The Chief Minister (quoted on page 9 of today's Examiner)   What a moronic thing to say. We pay taxes,

When will they get the message that the fairest way to cover the 'costs' of things like this is to not give pay increases to the whole of the government/CS/PS in times of austerity.

I hate this argument. Its like they all think they are doing us a fucking favour by letting some people stay in non jobs because otherwise it might kill the ecomony. Its tantamount to a threat to caus

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Looks to me like civil servants are putting together tax rises to save cuts and therefore their own jobs. What do we elect our representatives for then exactly? Surely they should have the best interests of the island as their remit and tell these non-elected employees to go swivel and that this is a surefire way to bankruptcy. Everyone needs to get onto their MHK's and remind them who votes them in and who they report to.....and it's not the grey suits who think they have a divine right to take the island down as long as they get their over-inflated salaries and gold-plated pensions. Let's hope the fallout of this shit tax snaps people out of their perpetual apathy.

Edited by Lxxx
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Ps pub talk from consultants leading this is to rise to £250 per equivilent household

 

I would be surprised if it didnt rise to a similar amount although I think in the next year or two it will be re-jigged to take into account the ability of the person to pay; my bet is that it will be calculated based on the ratable value of a property.

 

The government know that we know that we still pay a lot less than people do in the UK for their rates and as we seem to mostly compare what things cost here with what they cost in the UK, I think they will, over the next couple of years or so put more and more on the rates to bring us up to similar levels to the UK rates or whatever they are called these days.

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Yes it was obviously kept under wraps. And everyone had done their estimates already. Were not Douglas Corporation complaining as they had set their rate before they knew about this? But the point is the MHK's and Leg Co GAVE the authority to WASA to make this order last year, and had the chance to block it if they had had the sense to look properly at the new Section 11 of the Sewerage Act before it was passed. Massive fail.

 

>CoMIn will have given the directive. JH at WASA tells his Chief Officer to draw up the Order. JH signs the order. Tynwald approve it. End of the day it is the politicians who have to answer for their actions. No civil servant could bring this in without Keys, LegCo and Tynwald knowing about it and passing it. Bell and Treasury Minister will have know full well about it.

 

Bell and Teare certainly should have known about it when it was being planned and so should have Houghton as Chairman of WASA, but there's no reason that the rest of Tynwald or even CoMin would have done. As Chris Thomas (who wasn't in the Keys when the Bill was being discussed last Spring) pointed out the 1999 Sewage Act already contained a charging power that had never been used and most people would have assumed that such an important change would have been introduced with prior consultation and discussion.

 

Ironically when Houghton did introduce this last month he did promise some consultation (lines 2676-79 and 2707-10):

 

 

The Authority will also consult on the introduction of charges for the reception and treatment of the trade effluents at the sewerage treatment works. The charges will have regard to the composition, volume and rate of discharges to sewer and the costs incurred in treating and disposing of those trade effluents.
[...]
[Karran] needs to have regard that we will be looking at this matter further in respect of trade effluents coming from certain appropriate premises, not all, and the board in the future will be deciding on any future charging policy that may arise from that.

(That 'may' is Hansard's italics not mine)

So it is considered important to consult the businesses who might be the ones putting any strain on the sewage system or whose effluents may be what causes the big costs (but who for the moment will only pay as much as the smallest domestic property). However talking to the rest of us plebs is considered to much of an imposition.

 

Whether even Bell, Teare and Houghton actually knew far in advance is another matter. Certainly the motivation appears to be because of cut-backs coming from Treasury, but how much they are in control is another matter. As with most members of Tynwald they appear to prefer situations where they are presented with only one 'inevitable' choice so they don't have to deal with the stress of making any decisions.

 

But it certainly looks as if most Tynwald members were in the dark over this. What is important is not whether they should have known, but how they react, both to this tax and also to the sneaky way it has been brought in. Muttering "There is no alternative" is not a satisfactory response, either to the new tax, the financial situation or the undermining of open democracy this process has shown.

 

Very much the same pathetic,defeatist attitude that they broadly subscribed to when the reciprocal health agreement looked in jeopardy.

 

It does make me wonder how effective they really were,if at all, when representing our case with the recent VAT share agreement changes.

 

Maybe they just submissively agreed to the changes demanded of them and that was that.

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Ps pub talk from consultants leading this is to rise to £250 per equivilent household

I would be surprised if it didnt rise to a similar amount although I think in the next year or two it will be re-jigged to take into account the ability of the person to pay; my bet is that it will be calculated based on the ratable value of a property.

 

The government know that we know that we still pay a lot less than people do in the UK for their rates and as we seem to mostly compare what things cost here with what they cost in the UK, I think they will, over the next couple of years or so put more and more on the rates to bring us up to similar levels to the UK rates or whatever they are called these days.

Do you think the Govt also know that we know that the charges in the UK pay for a much greater range of services and facilities than are provided on the Island,and therefore any direct comparison would be nonsense?

 

Bet you didn't know that I know that.

Edited by Lisenchuk
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Ps pub talk from consultants leading this is to rise to £250 per equivilent household

I would be surprised if it didnt rise to a similar amount although I think in the next year or two it will be re-jigged to take into account the ability of the person to pay; my bet is that it will be calculated based on the ratable value of a property.

 

The government know that we know that we still pay a lot less than people do in the UK for their rates and as we seem to mostly compare what things cost here with what they cost in the UK, I think they will, over the next couple of years or so put more and more on the rates to bring us up to similar levels to the UK rates or whatever they are called these days.

Do you think the Govt also know that we know that the charges in the UK pay for a much greater range of services and facilities than are provided on the Island,and therefore any direct comparison would be nonsense?

That would take a certain degree of intelligence.

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Ps pub talk from consultants leading this is to rise to £250 per equivilent household

 

I would be surprised if it didnt rise to a similar amount although I think in the next year or two it will be re-jigged to take into account the ability of the person to pay; my bet is that it will be calculated based on the ratable value of a property.

 

Ability to pay may not be related to the "rateable value" of a property

 

 

 

The government know that we know that we still pay a lot less than people do in the UK for their rates and as we seem to mostly compare what things cost here with what they cost in the UK, I think they will, over the next couple of years or so put more and more on the rates to bring us up to similar levels to the UK rates or whatever they are called these days.

 

I pay about the same 'rates' as 'across' (£2000) but I'm told some folk pay very little and I cannot understand how they determine the rateable value of a property on this island.

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Looks to me like civil servants are putting together tax rises to save cuts and therefore their own jobs.

Of course they are. Treasury cut our budget, so we fiddle it to give us the power to bypass Treasury and raise tax directly via service charges direct from our utility users. Unelected public servants being given a mandate to raise revenue from 100% of the population without requiring Treasury approval.

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Looks to me like civil servants are putting together tax rises to save cuts and therefore their own jobs.

Of course they are. Treasury cut our budget, so we fiddle it to give us the power to bypass Treasury and raise tax directly via service charges direct from our utility users. Unelected public servants being given a mandate to raise revenue from 100% of the population without requiring Treasury approval.

The only fail safe mechanism we have on the civil service are our elected officials and when they are in bed with the very same people they are supposed to be keeping in check then we're well and truly screwed......unless we mobilise and get off our asses and make them accountable.

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I don't think for one minute they are 'in bed' with them.

 

It's just that out tinpot local politicians haven't got any intelligence to comprehend the situation and come up with their own ideas and policies.

 

So they will grasp on to an half assed idea, presumably so that it looks like they are at least doing something.

 

Bell bangs on endlessly about needing to break down the silos and think collectively and yet we had had an endless drip feed of stealth tax increases and generally stupid ideas stemming from individual sections of Government. And he is in the position to stop it.

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I wonder how long before someone suggests not paying and just using doggy bags before popping them in their local MHKs recycling bin. Plus, Tynwald should be triple taxed due to the amount of BS that leaks from the bowels of members.

 

How about that Roxanne?

 

 

semper in excretia sumus solim profundum variat

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Looks to me like civil servants are putting together tax rises to save cuts and therefore their own jobs.

Of course they are. Treasury cut our budget, so we fiddle it to give us the power to bypass Treasury and raise tax directly via service charges direct from our utility users. Unelected public servants being given a mandate to raise revenue from 100% of the population without requiring Treasury approval.
The only fail safe mechanism we have on the civil service are our elected officials and when they are in bed with the very same people they are supposed to be keeping in check then we're well and truly screwed......unless we mobilise and get off our asses and make them accountable.

You have to wonder really. We have the world's oldest democratically elected Parliament. However (by deliberate act, or omission, or whatever) we end up handing direct powers to levy tax to a public utility company that does not need to seek direct Treasury approval to put up service charges which apply to every household and business in the Island. That public utility company is run by unelected public servants with one elected member on its board who has no veto on what has been decided.

 

So when Treasury starts really cutting departmental budgets, how many other departments will be conferred with the power to bypass Treasury and raise revenue straight from the public? Its certainly allowing public servants to sort themselves out financially without any requirement to filter their financial requests through Treasury.

Edited by hboy
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So when Treasury starts really cutting departmental budgets, how many other departments will be conferred with the power to bypass Treasury and raise revenue straight from the public? Its certainly allowing public servants to sort themselves out financially without any requirement to filter their financial requests through Treasury.

It was this that got me cross about the whole business (NPI). To return to the sewerage charge - there cannot be many who could not afford £1/wk - the amount isn't the problem, not really. It's the precedent it sets for the future and if we all accept this now as a fait accompl then we are setting our own dangerous precedent.

I'm actually angrier about this now than I was on day one. I've seen this shitty trick played before with amendments to primary legislation. Usually the department says its just future proofing provisions etc, etc to Tynwald and its nodded through. In reality though Treasury has been bypassed, and they can raise whatever they want (within reason) direct from us - no filter, no oversight, and not even a political member on the board with powers to veto the proposals. Its an utter disgrace. So now they just bypass direct Treasury budget cuts by coming to us to fill the gap in future.

Edited by hboy
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Looks to me like civil servants are putting together tax rises to save cuts and therefore their own jobs.

Of course they are. Treasury cut our budget, so we fiddle it to give us the power to bypass Treasury and raise tax directly via service charges direct from our utility users. Unelected public servants being given a mandate to raise revenue from 100% of the population without requiring Treasury approval.

The only fail safe mechanism we have on the civil service are our elected officials and when they are in bed with the very same people they are supposed to be keeping in check then we're well and truly screwed......unless we mobilise and get off our asses and make them accountable.

Count me in,I've been game for challenging this lot over their piss poor representation for a good while now.

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