What's in it for me? Simon Jones sifted through the Premier’s Budget Statement to find out why the Budget might matter to you. *Photo by Kageaki Smith
What's in it for me? Simon Jones sifted through the Premier’s Budget Statement to find out why the Budget might matter to you. *Photo by Kageaki Smith

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 24: Does all the bluster about the Budget give you a headache, talk of taxes and debt ceilings and percentage points make your eyes glaze over? Do stories about the sinking fund give you that sinking feeling?

Simon Jones sifted through the jargon in the Premier’s Budget Statement to find out why the Budget might matter to you.

 


 


You like to shop overseas
— good news — the Customs duty rate for personal item brought through the airport has been reduced from 35 to 25 per cent. Plus you will get a $200 exemption, up from $100.

You import personal goods by courier — bad news — you will now have to pay 25 per cent Customs duty at all ports of entry, a substantial hike on some items — but not as bad as the 35 per cent some importers feared.

You are fed up with queuing at the airport — a new ‘nothing to declare’ green lane in the airport’s Customs Hall will be introduced.

You are out of a job — A One Stop Job Centre will be opened.

You smoke — expect to pay more for tobacco products.

You take the bus and ferry — no worries, fares will not increase.

You are a senior with a house with an ARV of more than $50,000 — you will have to start paying Land Tax.

You are a senior with a big car — you will have to pay a car licence fee if your vehicle is above a certain size.

You’re a senior in need of cash — the Public Service Superannuation Act 1981 will be amended to give you access to a portion of your pension fund.

You’re working and in need of cash — You can voluntary opt out of the five percent private pension fund this year.

You are transferring a mortgage — stamp duty will be removed when switching from bank to another.

You are a student unsure about your future career — the Career Pathway programme will be launched at all public secondary schools in September.

You smuggle drugs in ship containers — the long-awaited X-ray machine at Hamilton Docks will become operational in 2012/13.

You are a tourist looking for a new experience – The Premier has stated today that ground will be broken on a new luxury hotel in Bermuda this year.

You are a hotel owner, restaurant owner or retail store owner — breathe a sigh of relief as payroll tax concessions will continue.

You’re a Somerset area resident — Sandy’s 360, the community initiative that provides recreational facilities for people of all ages, will get a $2 million grant.

You worry about Government debt — the current Budget deficit is $172m. It’ll be financed in part by a locally issued bond.

You worry about the state of the economy — Premier Cox says weak economic growth will continue in 2012 but we’ll see modest growth in 2013/14.