Government Sint Maarten losing head tax on inter-island vessels

PHILIPSBURG--Government is losing an estimated US $600,000 annually from non-collection of the US $6 head tax from inter-island vessels.
This figure was shared in Parliament on Tuesday, by United St. Maarten (US) Party Member of Parliament (MP) Frans Richardson. He gathered that figure from the industry.
Vessels operating especially ferry services to the neighbouring islands are getting away "scot-free" from making the payment of US $6 a person, because government does not have any collection mechanism in place to monitor and collect the fee.
This collection, in particular for Simpson Bay Lagoon where most of the traffic originates, should be carried out by Simpson Bay Lagoon Authority Corporation (SLAC), an entity of St. Maarten Harbour Group of Companies; however, government never granted SLAC the concession for Simpson Bay Lagoon.
Finance Minister Martin Hassink told the Central Committee meeting dealing with development at the harbour that efforts will be made between the Department of Economic Affairs and the harbour group to find a solution to the revenue loss.
The harbour group holds the concession for Great Bay and Cay Bay; that concession was also called into question in the meeting by MPs based on the harbour's objection and ongoing court case with Dock Maarten (the Deher Family) about the expansion of the marina. MPs were told by Tourism and Economic Affairs Minister Claret Conner the concession was granted by government to protect against the development of another cruise port in Great Bay or Cay Bay.
Government was in its "right to grant" the building permit for the marina, but the harbour does not agree that this should be done based on its interpretation of the concession, said Connor. The harbour wanted at least the possibility to be consulted about the new development.
On the hosting of the 2014 Florida Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA), Hassink told MPs government did not contribute any funds. The Council of Ministers had offered the harbour group to sponsor one of the events, but this offer was never taken up.
The harbour group had applied during the tenure of then Finance Minister Roland Tuitt for the project construction of the Simpson Bay Causeway to be exempted from the Turn over Tax ToT. Tuitt denied this request. The same request was also denied by Hassink when the harbour resubmitted its plea. The contractors and subcontractors who were part of the project are under assessment by the Tax Inspectorate. They will have to pay the assessment or have the possibility to go to court to contest it if they are not in agreement.
The Central Committee meeting delved into a number of other topics related to the harbour group as requested by the Democratic Party and National Alliance MPs.
Parliament meets again today, Wednesday, starting at 10:00am in Parliament House, with Justice Minister Dennis Richardson about changes to the Penal Code.
The Daily Herald

Lawyer Roeland Zwanikken considers legal action against ABN AMRO Bank

THE HAGUE--Attorney-at-law Roeland Zwanikken at St. Maarten’s BZSE law office is considering legal action against the intention of the Dutch ABN AMRO Bank to close the bank accounts of its clients in the Dutch Caribbean.

Fiscaal onderzoek bij notariskantoren vinden doorgang

In het Antilliaans Dagblad: Fiscaal onderzoek bij notariskantoren
WILLEMSTAD – De fiscale onderzoeken bij de notarissen vonden en vinden, ondanks de beperkingen van Covid-19, weer doorgang en de medewerking aan de kant van notarissen en adviseurs is daarbij ‘over het algemeen goed’.

Juridische miljoenenstrijd tussen BNP Paribas en Italiaanse prinses verhardt

  • Bezit van Italiaanse Crociani-familie op Curaçao mag van rechter worden verkocht
  • De Crociani's ruziën al jaren met BNP Paribas over een claim van $100 mln
  • Curaçaos trustkantoor United Trust heeft 'geen enkele relatie meer' met Camilla Crociani
Een Italiaanse prinses met zakelijke belangen in Nederland heeft het onderspit gedolven bij diverse rechtbanken in een langslepend conflict met zakenbank BNP Paribas.