Guernsey politicians vote to throw out 'fairer alternative' to GST

The States in Guernsey.
States Members in Guernsey have voted against a raft of alternative measures that would have replaced plans for a Good and Services Tax. Credit: ITV Channel

Politicians in Guernsey have voted against a 'fairer alternative' proposal that would have replaced plans for a Goods and Services Tax.

The package of alternative reforms spearheaded by Deputies Gavin St Pier and Heidi Soulsby included changes to Corporation Tax, increased levies on vehicle parking, and a possible tourism tax.

Deputies voted down the proposal in the States with 16 voting for it and 24 voting against it.

Deputy St Pier called GST "politically undeliverable" and said that bringing it in would make the next election a "single issue referendum" where politicians who said they would overturn the tax would be voted in.

Deputy Mark Helyar, the Vice President of Guernsey's Policy and Resources Committee, said that the 'fairer alternative' proposal was an unrealistic option that he compared to "looking for cash down the back of the sofa" and urged Deputies to throw it out.

Going forward this means that politicians will instead have to choose from a number of other proposals, including GST, when it comes to addressing Guernsey's predicted £100 million deficit.

Among the options set to be debated this week are three possible scenarios presented by P&R that aim to save the island money while also raising tax revenues.

Also up for debate will be the funding plans for a number of large-scale projects such as the post-16 education campus and improvements to the hospital.

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