There are calls for a review of the effect of tax rises on vehicles in Jersey, following concerns it could damage the viability of car hire firms in the island.
Last month, the States voted through the 2018 budget which included an amendment to plans for Vehicle Emissions Duty (VED), a tax on new vehicles.
The impact of both the 5% rise in duty, and the lowering of the bands, means the cost of registering many new vehicles has increased significantly.
A basic Ford Fiesta model emits 128g of co2 per kilometre. The VED for that is now £429.24, a near three-fold hike on the fee of £153.30 last year. Meanwhile, a vehicle with 201g of co2 emissions per kilometre would be liable for VED of £1,931.58. Prior to the change, that fee would have been £766.50.
The Jersey Hospitality Association has been contacted by members and is calling on government ministers to review the changes.
JHA president Fiona Kerley said: “There have been a number of reports in the media recently highlighting islanders’ concerns at the real implications of the 1 January change in VED, which was agreed by the States in last November’s Budget. As an association representing hundreds of businesses in the hospitality sector, we too have been contacted by members, who fear that the increase in VED to 5% and lowering of VED bands could put them out of business.”
The change was brought in by an amendment to the main Budget package, meaning there was no industry consultation beforehand. The JHA argue that means politicians didn’t have the full facts before them before they voted.
Fiona said: “We believe that the States have fallen victim to the law of unintended consequences. The JHA urges the Council of Ministers to commit to a review of this change in VED at an appropriate date. While the States can take a considerable length of time to reach the smallest decisions, here we have a significant tax rise that was proposed in a 100-word amendment and decided after approximately 30 minutes of debate.”