MINISTER in the Ministry of Finance Allyson West said increasing the penalty for failing to submit a valuation of land form is justified. West made this point as she concluded debate on the Valuation of Land (Amendment) Bill, 2018 in the Senate on Friday. The legislation proposes to increase the penalty from $500 to $5,000. West said the former rate had been in place since 1920 and is no longer an effective deterrent.
She said it could not serve as a deterrent in times when people can spend $300 to attend a Carnival fete or $10,000 to buy a Carnival costume. West said some senators felt the increase was too small while others felt it was too high. West also said the value of land would be determined using the annual rental value. She said other concerns raised by senators were linked to the Property Tax Amendment Bill 2018. West said she would deal with these concerns when debate on that bill started.