Proposed amendments to the Income Tax Act will make it possible for Saint Lucians to qualify for a maximum deduction of $5,000 irrespective of the nature of their income, for hobby farming and contributions to community road rehabilitation projects.
To qualify for the deduction for hobby farming, a resident is required to obtain a certificate of registration from the minister responsible for agriculture, under the Hobby Farmers Tax Relief Incentive Programme. This initiative is aimed at revitalising the subsistence farming sector which is important to Saint Lucia’s food security.
A resident who contributes towards a community road rehabilitation project also qualifies for the maximum $5,000. This deduction is applicable only in the year in which the individual makes the contribution towards the project. It is also a requirement that the project be registered with the ministry responsible for infrastructure.
This proposal was introduced in the 2013/2014 budget by Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony, who announced that given the difficult economic climate, Government will seek to engage citizens through public private sector partnerships, to address the poor road conditions in communities.
To date, one such project has been initiated by residents of Trouya Point, who have made a contribution of $26,000 to the rehabilitation of their community road.
Once the amendments have been approved by the House of Assembly, residents who have contributed to this project will be eligible to claim their deductions.
These deductions will be allowed from the income year commencing January 1, 2013.