§ MR. SUMMERBELL
I beg to ask the Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies if he is aware that the tax payable on property in Jamaica over the value of £1,000 is limited to 1s. in every £10, and that the tax on values under £1,000 may go from 1s. to 5s. as may be required; and, if so, can he state whether it is the intention of the Government to make any alteration with a view to the abolition of this distinction in favour of those with higher incomes.
§ MR. CHURCHILL
The property tax in Jamaica is payable at the rate of 8d, on every £10 of the gross value of real property, and there is no such distinction as that described by the hon. Member. In the case of the parish general rates, which are collected for parochial purposes, it is provided that the rate to be levied on every £10 of the value of any property after and in excess of £1,000 shall in no case exceed 1s. in every £10 of such value. This limitation was imposed with a view to discouraging extravagence on the part of local bodies, and to prevent unduly heavy burdens falling on the 569 larger properties, and it was calculated that the effect of this limitation would (in parishes where it applied)" only increase the rates on other properties by about ½d. on the average. The Secretary of State sees no reason for the amendment of the law in this respect, the limitation having been imposed as a concession to the elected members of the legislature and generally accepted as satisfactory.