From the east to the west of the capital city, every indication from the reaction of a majority of low and medium income earners is that the revised Freetown City Council Property Rate is exorbitant and outrageous; relative to what the Council previously charged.
A property owner with an average sized one flat property raged that the Council’s assessment of a rate of Le742, 446 per annum is grossly unreasonable.
Whilst the majority of people The Satellite interviewed said, they are not against paying property tax to the Council; they believe that a tax is not supposed to burden the people.
Complains from tenants are that with the Council having increased property rates, at a time when the economic crunch is hitting the ordinary man very hard is that it would definitely result in a sharp increase in rents by landlords who will pass the burden on to their tenants.
`Also, the people point out that the method of assessment of the revised property rate was not done judiciously; as many claim that their properties were incorrectly assessed; thereby resulting in higher than expected assessment.
Thus, many have stated that while some level of taxation is necessary to fund government operations, excessive taxation can have negative consequences.
The most negative of these is that high property taxes decrease the income of pensioners and the unemployed that own their own properties; as it also affects businesses.
Thus, with the economy undergoing hard times, many people believe that instead of increasing taxes, government should be reducing taxes.
The result of the increased city rate without proper consultation with the people, many have opined, would be politically disastrous for the ruling SLPP government in the 2023 elections in the Western Area, as many people in protest at what they call an exorbitant imposition on them would vote for the opposition.