Mixed reactions to fuel, motor vehicle fees increase
Taxi operators and motorists in the Corporate Area are not unanimous in their objection to the increase in the special consumption tax (SCT) on fuel, which took effect yesterday. In fact, more persons criticised the 20 per cent increase on motor vehicle licences and allied fees, which is now in effect as part of the Government's revenue measures for the 2017-2018 fiscal year.
The SCT on fuel is geared towards raising $7.5 billion in revenue and will see increases ranging from $0.43 to $7.36 per litre of gasoline.
When quizzed by The Gleaner as to his thoughts on the fuel increase, taxi operator Leonard Thomas shared that the Government had to do what was needed to sustain the country.
"The gas price is alright. We (taxi men) can live with it. The 20 per cent pon the fitness could be lower. A lot of persons a go bawl, but we a go survive as always," he said.
In similar fashion, a taxi operator, identified only as Winston, said: "The gas thing alright because memba seh the gas did well low to begin with, suh I don't have a problem with the fuel. However, the 20 per cent pon the fitness and registration needs to be lower."
On the flip side, motorist Michael Brown summed up the tax measures as "wickedness".
"You buy $1,000 gas now and it can't full a gallon bottle, when it use to give you almost two gallon bottles. Dem affi do sumin betta than this, man. The 20 per cent nuh all that bad because you don't do it often. I'm self-employed as a stove technician and every now and then I get a likkle work, and just fi go a di work site, a $2,000 gas sometimes. Him (Audley Shaw) did promise we seh no new tax and now him a say him can't do betta, a wickedness!"
Taxi operator Errol added: "The high rising of the gas nah help we 'cause if we charge the people them one dollar extra pon the bus fare, dem nah pay it. We don't want an increase in fares either, we just want the gas price dem low."