Reader Letter: Barbados Turf Club Received Millions, Taxes Up – Nothing For Education

Dear Barbados Free Press,

First let me say thank you for taking the time to read this letter, I have been watching how things are changing in Barbados but it seems to be only helping the government and the rich.

barbados_turf_clubTake for example, on November 20th, 2008, government wrote of a debt of $19.1 MILLION dollars for the Barbados Turf club.

Road tax for all private vehicles jumped from $265.00 to $404.01, larger vehicles $1060.00 to $1600.00. Food prices also went up like we didn’t see that coming.

With this said, Prime Minister David Thompson, decided to raise the student revolving loan from $50, 000 to $100, 000, which after more than a year still hasn’t officially been implemented. I am one of those whose education will benefit dearly from this. However, each time I call the office they say they are awaiting funds, was the government awaiting funds for the turf club also when they decided to write of their debt of $19.1 million dollars to stay in someone’s good graces? I am sure if any other business operating in Barbados owed that amount of money, would have either been shut down or further more they would not have been allowed to accumulate that high a debt in the first instance.

I have also taken the other steps to call the Higher Learning Center (Ministry of Education), which deals with the National Development Scholarship, generally available in May, I was only to be told by staff “Oh dat ent ready yet, call back in June!” The lack of care, customer service, and wanting for this island to be know for its excellence in education and leadership is thoroughly DISSAPOINTING.

The Ministry of Education has continued in the past few years, despite which ever government is in, with NOT helping to nurture persons who wish to further their studies overseas and return to develop their country. This government proved that a $19.1 million write off is much easier, than investing into THE FUTURE OF THE PEOPLE IN BARBADOS.

20 Comments

Filed under Barbados Government, Politics

20 responses to “Reader Letter: Barbados Turf Club Received Millions, Taxes Up – Nothing For Education

  1. Donald Duck, Esq

    Can anyone tell us if the Government has passed the relevant legislation to make legal the increase in road taxes that were announced in the 2008 budget. Taxpayers have a right to call back for their money if government did not pass the legislation within 4 months of the budget. Can we call back for our money if this was the case!!!!

    Any comments from persons who are knowledgeable of this issue?

  2. dominoes

    PPL in bim wanted a change,so they get it and got to live with it.

  3. Rumboy

    As well as you, PPL.

  4. 158

    well, to the author, take it as a blessing in disguise.

    i went, studied – even got a masters.

    in the first instance i got a student loan with the loan shark interest rates they put on u, in the second instance i self financed my masters – after a ‘big up’ in the education ministry decided he did not like the person who was listed as my reference, and i couldn’t get their money.

    so i have $100,000+ in loans, and no job.

    the hon chris sinkler et al get on television and talk about needing people who can work in social policy – visit his office, call about vacancies, apply to the ministry of social care – NOTHING.

    everywhere else u apply, ur shut down.

    young people went and came back here with lofty ideas of giving back to barbados, but the powers that be benefit themselves and the rich. u are better off without an education if you plan to stay in barbados. open a shop, steal, whatever…

  5. Hants

    Write a letter to the Minister of Education and your parliamentary representative.

    Go to his constituency office every day until you get direction on obtaining a scholarship or loan.

    Make it your full time job.

    Go to every bank in Barbados and find out if they will give you a scholarship or loan.

    You want a University Education? don’t let anybody stop you.

  6. Realtor

    High class qualification and achievement does not guarantee a job. Keep trying at home and overseas ,
    its important to find a job wherever it is available. There is nothing wrong in working in another country if granted the opportunity.

  7. TheNickster

    This is just a part of the overall issue, these people in-charge are merely continuing what owen and friends left off.

  8. reality check

    Every student that has seen the failure of government to implement long term policies of education, green space, ITAL and FOI for future generations should drop everything they are doing and get involved with building up a bloc of like minded individuals to elect their own representatives.

    Barbados is in crisis and nothing will happen without electing long term visionists and realists dedicated to a strong Barbados.

    As you can see your efforts have fallen on deaf ears and a strong ITAL and green party of 10,000 can lead Barbados out of the wilderness.

  9. Mathilde

    I had a student loan too, and if I could do things over again I would work for a year and save like mad and try to pay for most of it myself. Their interest rates are extremely high (in the USA student loans go at 3%, mine was 9% cummulative interest). Student loans are a bad way to start adulthood. You are not allowed to work while studying, therefore you cannot earn money to pay back the interest that is collecting as you study. By the time I graduated after 3 years, my loan was up by $20,000.
    I was told by the SRLF at the time of my repayment that they have a hard time getting students to pay BACK the money, alot of students stay overseas and never pay back, which is why they are low on funds. While this is probably true, it doesnt excuse the government from not helping. They could t least cut the interest rate and make it a REAL student loan, because right now theres no difference between a bank loan and the SRLF.
    Good luck to you! I hope you find a happy solution that does not make your first years as an adult miserable.

  10. Meakai

    Government now has a policy of extracting as much money as it can in the form of taxes , fees, interest and penalties from the masses.
    They then absolve business and the elite from their responsibilities and obligations to the treasury and we the (m)asses keep silent an accept it.

  11. skinteeth

    But why should anymore have to go to that length in the first place to secure a loan for education ? Are we saturated with too many educated folks?

  12. Realtor

    Would you believe that some years back banks were developing student loan packages for students at UWI Cave Hill because it was great speculation that the government was going to make Barbadian students pay the full economic cost for education . That was in 1994 and after when the IMF was around. Barbadian students would be well advised to study in Barbados for degrees in disciplines that are taught and are available in Barbados, being paid for by the tax payers of this country. After that any number could play.

  13. Realtor

    Moderation for what? May I ask.

  14. BFP

    Moderation for we were at work and now we’re not!

  15. Eve

    My daughter is studying at university where she has academics for 2 semesters and works for 6 months in her field – paid. This co-op program allows her to receive actual experience as well as references after her work. This program continues for 4-5 years, after which she will have a bachelors degree and 3 actual job experiences. Most students at this university leave with a degree and zero student loans – they pay for their tuition and expenses with compensation from their co-op job opportunity. The university makes it their priority to place students in jobs both locally and abroad.It seems like a common-sense approach, especially in today’s economy. They have been doing this since the early 1930’s!!!

  16. Avatar Gurl

    Good luck with THAT one! 😀

  17. Avatar Gurl

    No, we’re just saturated with too many IMITATORS! 😉

  18. Avatar Gurl

    Damn…better not even get educated!

    Find a foreign man/woman, sweep them off their feet, marry them here, and then move to their country…WORKS EVERY TIME! And not nearly as expensive!

  19. J

    Dear 158 you wrote “a ‘big up’ in the education ministry decided he did not like the person who was listed as my reference, and i couldn’t get their money.”

    Are you sure that this is true? Maybe your reference had not yet paid back his own student loan?

  20. Why

    How many people in the turf club can afford to write a check for $19m? Is the government worrying about the rich continuing to live their extravagant lifestyle and forgeting about the poor?