Connect with us

News

Ministerial Statement by Finance Minister E. Jay Saunders on Home Owner’s Policy

Published

on

Delivered in the House of Assembly on March 17, 2022

 

#TurksandCaicos, March 24, 2022 – Mr. Speaker, on the 16th February 2022, Cabinet approved amendments to the First Time Home Owner’s Policy, aimed at assisting in promoting homeownership for Turks & Caicos Islands Status Holders and BOTCs, with commencement set for the 1st April 2022.

Mr. Speaker, our Government’s First Time Home Owner’s Policy allows first time property buyers, and persons renovating their homes after 10 years, to receive $50,000 in Stamp Duty and Import Duty concessions.

Now Mr. Speaker, this policy was first rolled out in 2019 by the then Government of the day, and unfortunately, but not surprisingly, it had a low uptake. Specifically, Mr. Speaker, during the period April 2019 to January 2022, the Ministry of Finance received approximately 100 applications, with 80 being approved for concessions totaling $570,000.

The breakdown of the concessions awarded are:

  • 31 Stamp Duty Waivers for a total of $441,035, and
  • 49 Import Duty Waivers for a total of $129,897.

Mr. Speaker, the previous Government had this policy in place for 34 months, and during that time less than 3 persons per month benefitted from it, with the average payout being approximately $17,000.

Mr. Speaker, our enhancements remove many, if not all, of the nuisances and obstacles that made the old policy unattractive. In addition to increasing the concession amount from $20,000 to $50,000, our Government also:

  1. Allows concessions to be applied to both Stamp Duty and Import Duties rather than one or the other, and
  2. Removed the restrictions limiting concessions to land purchases of $150,000 or less, and land + building purchases of $500,000 or less.

Mr. Speaker, imagine that. The old policy actually had restrictions that limited the concessions to land purchases of $150,000 or less, and land + building purchases of $500,000 or less. Mr. Speaker, as the previous Government crafted and/or signed off on this policy, this is tantamount to them intentionally punishing Turks & Caicos Islanders for wanting to own nice property. Mr. Speaker, the old policy basically said to Turks & Caicos Islanders (particularly Turks & Caicos Islanders) that if they could afford to buy land worth more than $150,000 or land + a building worth more than $500,000, that the Government didn’t think that they deserved the concession.

Mr. Speaker, our Government want Turks & Caicos Islanders to Live Best Lives, and that’s why we took a Red Pen to First Time Home Owner’s Policy. When we got to the restrictions that punished our people for wanting to own nice property, we told the Technocrats to “take it out!!!”. As a matter of fact, Mr. Speaker, I didn’t even wait for them to do it, I took it out myself.

Mr. Speaker, our desire to empower Turks & Caicos Islanders through property ownership didn’t stop at the First Time Home Owner’s Policy. We went further Mr. Speaker. Our Government also increased the Zero-Rated transactions under the Stamp Duty Ordinance from $25,000.00 to $100,000.00 for Turks & Caicos Islanders. Going forward, Turks & Caicos Islanders who purchase property worth $100,000.00 or less will pay zero (0) Stamp Duty. And those who purchase property for greater than that amount on: the islands of Grand Turk, Salt Cay, South Caicos, North Caicos and Middle Caicos, will pay a Stamp duty rate of just 4 per cent, and Providenciales and elsewhere in the Turks and Caicos Islands, just 6 per cent.

Mr. Speaker, with these policies, our Government just made private land as affordable for Turks & Caicos Islanders as Crown land. Mr. Speaker, we said that we will have people living their best lives, and that’s exactly what we’re doing.

News

TCIFA Referees selected to participate in FIFA RAP Course

Published

on

#TurksandCaicos, August 18, 2022 – It is always a massive boost when not only our players are given opportunities to develop, but also our Match Officials. The FIFA RAP (Referee Assistance Programme) presents referees with an opportunity to not solely refresh their understanding of the laws of the game, but also to improve with the ultimate objective of being appointed to the FIFA list of International Referees. This year, a FIFA RAP Course is set to take place in Nassau, Bahamas on August 25-28. From the TCIFA, three referees have been granted the chance to partake in the course; Watson Antoine, Anice Bernadin, and Leonard Suckrajh.

The course also serves to renominate existing FIFA Referees onto the list of International FIFA Referees for 2023. Last year, Anice Bernadin made it onto the list for International FIFA Referees for 2022 as an assistant referee, being given the chance to represent the Turks and Caicos Islands on the international stage.

The program is divided into two parts- theory of refereeing, as well as the practical elements. In order to qualify for this list, referees are required to pass the FIFA Fitness Test.

Patrice Senior, Head of Referees at the TCIFA, commented the following, “The role of the referee is key for the implementation of a football match, that is to interpret and enforce the laws of the game. Referees require positive learning environments with a framework that incorporates continuous development based on meaningful performance objectives – that allows successful promotion through the ranks from the grassroots level, up to the football league and beyond.

She continued by saying, “I am pleased to see the hard work and dedication of our referees in these Turks and Caicos Islands. I would like to congratulate those persons nominated by the TCIFA, Watson Antoine, Ancie Bernadine, and Leonard Suckrahj, and wish them all the best on their journey to the 2022-2023 FIFA International Referees list.”

Patrice also extended thanks to President Sonia Fulford and the TCIFA. She’s also shown gratitude towards the Bahamas Football Association for continuing to include the TCIFA.

Refereeing is a vitally important part of football. For our referees here in the Turks and Caicos to be given the chance to improve their knowledge and experience in an international setting is nothing less than magnificent.

 

Written by: Joshua Hall, Intern

For more information, please contact TCIFA Marketing and Communications Coordinator, Candia Ewing at 941-5532 or cewingtcifa@gmail.com

 

Address:

TCIFA National Academy

Venetian Road

Providenciales

Turks and Caicos Islands

Continue Reading

News

FortisTCI partners with Sam’s Club and Cargo Express/Tropical Shipping for Solar Energy 

Published

on

Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands (Thursday, August 18, 2022) – FortisTCI is pleased to announce that Cargo Express/Tropical Shipping and Sam’s Club have signed onto the Utility-Owned Renewable Energy (UORE) program.

FortisTCI has leased the 18,000 square foot roof space of Sam’s Club, a grocery wholesale business on Leeward Highway in Providenciales, to install a 312.8 kW solar photovoltaic system. Once commissioned, the system will produce renewable energy for the country’s electricity grid and avoid approximately 317 metric tons of carbon emissions annually.

FortisTCI has also leased the 13,000 square foot roof space of Cargo Express/Tropical Shipping’s building on South Dock Road in Providenciales to install a 200 kW solar photovoltaic system. The system is projected to avoid approximately 188 metric tons of carbon emissions annually once commissioned. Both systems will be installed by the end of 2022.

The UORE program, operated by FortisTCI, has been in place since 2015. The program now has 18 partnerships following the recent signees, which will increase the number of solar energy system installations across partner properties.

Customers undergo a pre-qualification process, and successful applicants receive incentives for leasing their roof space and the solar energy produced by the system. FortisTCI purchases, install, maintains, and owns the solar system at these properties at no cost to the customer.

Commenting on the partnership, Director of Cargo Express/Tropical Shipping, Carl Simmons stated: The Cargo Express brand is eager to partner with FortisTCI in advancing renewable energy initiatives in the TCI. This partnership allows us to protect the environment by generating electricity using solar energy, thereby reducing the use of fossil fuels. The installation of solar panels on Cargo Express’s 13,000 square foot roof will benefit our organizations and the wider community.”  

Owner and Manager of Sam’s Club, Gus Karagianis stated: “I am very fortunate to qualify for the UORE program operated by FortisTCI. I hope that more businesses that can qualify for the program, embrace the opportunity, and one rooftop at a time, we can all make a difference in creating a more sustainable energy future.”

President and CEO at FortisTCI Ruth Forbes stated: “We wish to commend our newest UORE customers for supporting the journey to a more sustainable energy future. Roof-mounted solar installations have allowed us to steadily increase our solar footprint year-over-year. Our studies have found that at least four acres of land are needed to produce 1MW of solar energy.

Therefore, we continue to maximize roof spaces through customer partnerships. We also continue to pursue regulatory reform to advance our clean energy plan, which includes investing in utility-scale solar projects. By December 2022, we expect to have at least 2.6 MW of solar energy installed on the grid.”

 

Photo Captions:

Header: (L-R) Vice President of Innovation, Technology and Strategic Planning at FortisTCI, Rachell Roullet,  President and CEO at FortisTCI, Ruth Forbes, Owner and Manager of Sam’s Club, Gus Karagianis, and Manager of Innovation and Resource Planning, TeAnn Thomas.

Insert: Rachell Roullet,  President and CEO at FortisTCI, Ruth Forbes, Director of Cargo Express -Tropical Shipping, Carl Simmons,  and Manager of Innovation and Resource Planning, TeAnn Thomas.

 

Continue Reading

News

TCI Beach Soccer National Team Players Train in Italy

Published

on

#TurksandCaicos, August 18, 2022 – In June of this year, Pisa Beach Soccer, located in Italy, presented an opportunity for two of our Beach Soccer National Players to train alongside their team. This opportunity was nothing short of astounding. Herby Magny and Makenson Cadet were the two fortunate players who were chosen to train with the Pisa Beach Soccer team. Pisa Beach Soccer is ranked at the top of the Italian Serie AON Beach Soccer League and in addition to that, they are the reigning champions from last season.

This entire experience would not have been possible for Herby or Makenson if it was not for the recommendation of Matteo Marucci, Head Coach of Pisa Beach Soccer as well as Head Coach of the Turks and Caicos Islands Men’s beach Soccer Team. Coach Marucci has a long-standing history within the sport of Beach Soccer, representing Italy in both the 2015 and 2017 Beach Soccer World Cups.

Both Herby and Makenson engaged in a series of intensive training sessions that took place over a ten-day span.  These were morning and evening sessions. The morning sessions were coached by Bruno Xavier, Captain of the Brazilian Men’s National Beach Soccer Team. Bruno is not a new face to the Beach Soccer World, he was awarded World’s Best Player in 2014 and was a part of the Dream Team from 2014 to 2018. In the morning the focal point was working on core, balance, agility, and strength. The evening sessions consisted of a training session with the Pisa Beach Soccer first team under the supervision of Coach Marucci.

When asked for a comment on what It was like to train with the team, Herby Magny had the following to say, “It was one of the best experiences in my soccer career. It has made me fall in love with the beautiful game of beach soccer even more. Training with the Pisa Beach Soccer Team was conducted at a different level than how I’m used to training. The level of intensity and professionalism stood out the most, as most of the players are key players for the Brazilian & Italian national teams.” He went on to add, “The first 2 sessions were difficult as the guys did not really know us and so they didn’t pass to us during the games, however by the third day onwards it was fantastic, as we proved ourselves. The guys welcomed us like their own teammates and involved us in every play.”

Fellow teammate, Makenson Cadet, had this take on his time spent in Italy, “The experience was needed. Italy is beautiful, the food was delicious and training in a professional environment was top notch.” He continued, “What really stood out to me is the passion they had for the game, it’s unbelievable some of the players still have to work full-time jobs because they are not getting paid enough, but they still showed up every day with the same strong mentality. Matteo is a really good coach and a good person as well.”

Without doubt, these training sessions challenged Herby and Mackenson for the better. Both players expressed an abundance of gratitude for the chance to take part in the training sessions. Experiences like these are crucial in the development of our players here at the TCIFA.

 

Written by: Joshua Hall, Intern

For more information, please contact TCIFA Marketing and Communications Coordinator, Candia Ewing at 941-5532 or cewingtcifa@gmail.com

 

Address:

TCIFA National Academy

Venetian Road

Providenciales

Turks and Caicos Islands

Continue Reading

FIND US ON FACEBOOK

TRENDING