$8.4B in rates and taxes owed to City Hall
– Unit launched to recover monies
The Mayor and City Council of Georgetown on Monday launched a unit to tackle the recovery of some $8.4 billion in rates and taxes owed to the council.
The Rate Recovery Drive and a team from the Council will begin speaking to property owners on Thursday in the city about how they can pay their rates and taxes.
Treasurer of the City Council John Douglas said at a press conference on Monday at the Council’s Chambers that the unit should assist in recovering much-needed revenue for the Council.
“The last we checked it was $8.4B and that was without interest, so base on that the Finance Committee would have put their thoughts together and one of the approaches we have decided to do is to carry out a Rate Recovery Drive,” the Treasurer said.
The recovery exercise will last for six months to ascertain the way forward for taxpayers; persons will also be informed of how the rating system works and query any issues they might have.
The City’s Treasurer said that persons can have their issues dealt with by the Council’s Finance Committee which would make a decision before taking Legal action against defaulting businesses.
“Council has met and we have finalized our budget and we have finalized our approach as the way we would go about garnering our revenue and one of the things we have noticed in looking at the council financially, is rates that are outstanding,” the Treasurer said.
The Mayor of Georgetown, Ubraj Naraine for the past weeks has been appealing to persons to pay their taxes.
The Council’s Town Clerk acting, Sharon Harry-Munroe said a committee was specifically set up to execute and encourage persons to pay their taxes.
“We are looking at various mechanisms within which we can garner in that revenue, one of it is with the Rate Recovery Drive. You would have noted also that the Council would have had its Difficult Circumstances Committee, these are some of the ways within which we are encouraging our residents and citizens to come in to honour their financial obligation to the council,” Harry-Munroe said.
About 67 persons will be working for the Rate Recovery Drive, starting with businesses in Lacytown.
The Treasurer said all 15 constituencies will be visited.
The Treasurer said, “We notice that there is a number of challenges that may surround ratepayers, however it is the obligation to pay to us what is due to us.”
The Council said that payment plans are available, however, persons would have to visit the Council directly. Persons can also contact the Difficult Circumstances Committee for further queries and issues.