A BACKBENCH politician has proposed changes to stamp duty rates for high-value properties, and called on States Members to do more to initiate policy changes rather than rely on government.
Deputy Max Andrews, one of 22 Members elected to the States Assembly for the first time last June, said that he was ‘disappointed’ at the lack of propositions since taking office, and said all politicians had to accept responsibility.
He said: ‘Everyone on the backbenches has been in a difficult position – there’s been an expectation for the executive [government] to be coming forward and delivering policy, but the amount of business that’s been coming to the Assembly is disappointing.
‘After almost a year in office, I think that some politicians – including probably myself – need to start doing what they are paid to do and start delivering policy ideas.
‘There are 49 Members, any of whom can lodge propositions, and where the executive is not doing something, then I feel it’s part of the role for a non-executive Member to step up.’
New stamp duty bands for properties with price tags above £5million have been put forward by Deputy Andrews, whose plans are set to be debated in a month’s time.
The member for St Helier North said the changes would bring in additional revenue for the Treasury and help broaden the tax system.
‘Personal income tax is often relied on, and I think it would be beneficial to diversify into other areas,’ he said.
Currently the rate of stamp duty is constant for properties valued at up to £3m, at which point it increases up to a further threshold of £6m, when a further rise is applicable.
Under Deputy Andrews’ proposition, the £3m band would be unchanged, the £6m band would be lowered to £5m, and two further bands would be added at £10m and £15m.
Based on recent figures, Deputy Andrews estimated the new rates would have brought in £1.5m of extra revenue in 2021 and an additional £1m in 2022.