Casinos major contributors to increased state revenuePOSTED: 02/3/16 6:16 PM
St. Maarten News: The government projects an increase in state revenue of 3.1 percent this year compared to (still budgeted) 2015-revenue of 445 million guilders. The real revenue in 2014 was 422 million, but this year the government expects to pull in 458.9 million.
Most of this income stems from taxes – 363.8 million, but that is not where the increase comes from, since the budgeted tax-revenue in 2015 was slightly higher at 364.8 million. In 2014, tax-revenue was 352.4 million.
The bulk of the increase has to come from the casinos. Under the budget line hazardspelen (games of chance) the ministry of tourism and economic affairs should collect 19.9 million from the casinos, an increase of 12.3 million over last year. The receiver has been mandated to collect these fees, mainly compensation for the cost of casino controllers.
One of the ‘winners’ is to be found under residence permits. In 2014 this was good for 2 million guilders in revenue; last year it dipped to 1.6 million, but this year the government wants to collect almost 2.9 million, an increase of 80.8 percent over last year.
Dividend from the Central Bank should almost double to 2 million guilders it appears from the budget.
Gebe’s water distribution company also contributes to the increased revenue. In 2015, the government budgeted 4 million in receipts from surpluses at the water company; this year it is 7.3 million, an increase of 82.6 percent, but a far cry from the 30 million UP-leader Theo Heyliger recently mentioned in the media as the amount the government was about to take from Gebe’s coffers.
The concession fee the port contributes this year remains unchanged at 5.2 million. The airport – again – does not pay any concession fees. Dividend from other (not specified) government-owned companies is budgeted at just over half a million guilders.