I supported the successful amendment to the personal tax and benefits report, seeking a review into the introduction of environmental taxes, along with mitigating effects for lower income households. My speech is below.
Sir, I stand in support of this amendment. Indeed, this is something I put in my manifesto and I recall someone at the time saying that was a very brave thing to do. Being a fan of ‘Yes Minister’, I did wonder whether I had actually put my foot in it by having done so. I was very supportive of the emissions element of the width and emissions tax , though my issue with it in that context was that it was a one – off cost.
I agree with Deputy Luxon–I do not have the business concerns that it is considered that there might be out there, but then I run a business which considers the environment and has thoughts of the environment very much at the heart of what it does.
We do precious little to support people to make energy-efficient means to improve their way of life, though I do believe the Environment Department planning section is far more accommodating to domestic applications for small-scale alternative energy installations. The truth is domestic alternative energy systems are now incredibly efficient, resulting in really low running costs, but the upfront costs, whilst falling, are still prohibitive for many households.
Support in this area could make a huge difference to many by reducing the cost of living, as well as improving the Island’s carbon footprint. Our environmental taxes will make improvements in that area. They should be welcomed. Therefore, I am very happy to support this amendment.