Mayor Wagner Updates on City’s Tax Collecting Efforts
During the interview with Belize City Mayor Bernard Wagner, he also spoke about the council’s revenue flow. Mayor Wagner explained despite the low season, property tax collection has not been significantly impacted. He says that the staff has been paid some money owed because of the increment freeze during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Bernard Wagner, Mayor of Belize City: “The slow season is upon us but we have been able to how can I say this year following last year was a rough year. 2021 was the year of COVID I don’t believe you could probably go to any company and you look at their statement it will show deficit the city is no different but we learn from that and we were able to navigate that without losing or firing any of our workers. Our workers are a good bunch of people and so they are still with us. Just the other day we were able to repay, because we had freezed increments remember when COVID came in and we had that press conference we said we would freeze the increments for their two years and until we could get back on foot and so just prior to back to school the city was able to give all our workers there increment back. You know how glad those people were? Not having to go to a bank to borrow to send their child to school? And so they used to say boy the mayor freeze my increment but when I brought back the money to them now the other day they said damn it came at the right time so and we do plan on giving those workers the other balance so we only paid one increment but for Christmas we pay them the other increment. We are a council just like any other council we face challenges, we face financial challenges you have this type of cyclical inflows and so you have to manage it and we have been able to do so and now as we enter November then it starts to go up so we only have this month here October to worry about. You don’t hear anything now about our garbage, we are continuing to meet those obligations and so we continue to tread along.”