Guernsey deputy to oppose mortgage tax relief cut

Deputy Matt Fallaize
Image caption Deputy Fallaize said no cuts should be made until after the review in 2013

Plans to reduce the limit on mortgage interest tax relief in Guernsey are being opposed by a deputy.

Deputy Matt Fallaize said it would cost many of the "squeezed middle" thousands of pounds a year.

Guernsey's Treasury and Resources (T&R) department wants to cut the relief by £50,000 in 2014, with a view to phasing it out altogether by 2021.

The deputy said it had been part of the tax system for too long to change it without a full review of the system.

He said: "In a sense I admire T&R's boldness. But there is a very thin line between being politically courageous and politically injudicious and on this occasion I think T&R have erased that line."

But a member of T&R, Deputy Mark Dorey, said it would not necessarily be phased-out, even if States members approved budget proposals next month.

He said any further cuts would only go ahead if a forthcoming review supported them.

Deputy Gavin St Pier, the T&R minister, said mortgage interest relief cost £8m a year, which could no longer be justified.

The average price of a local market property in Guernsey was £445,326 in the third quarter of 2012.

Guernsey's deputies will debate the budget at a special sitting of the States on 12 December.

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