Change In Duty & Retailers Payroll Tax

September 30, 2011

[Updated] This morning [Sept.30] Premier and Minister of Finance Paula Cox said “In taking note of this continuing economic malaise and the possible social consequences, Government will immediately institute several emergency measures to assist businesses that have a pressing need for financial relief.”

Payroll tax will be set at zero for the retail sector, while duty payable at the airport for returning residents will jump by 10% and only one person per household can claim the duty free allowance. The new policies take effect tomorrow [Oct.1] and end in six months.

The Premier listed three major changes:

  • Payroll tax will be set at a zero rate for the retail sector for a six month period ending on 31st March 2012
  • Travelers’ allowances for returning residents will be restricted to one person per household for a six month period
  • Duty on accompanied goods declared by returning residents will be increased from 25% to 35%.

“The payroll tax relief is intended to provide cost reduction to businesses in the retail sector so that doors may be kept open and staff may be retained. It will also provide workers in the sector with additional spending power,” said the Premier.

The Premier continued on to say that, “By restricting the duty free allowance to only one person per family as opposed to two or more, and increasing the duty rate from 25 percent to 35 percent, this will discourage personal spending abroad.”

17-minute video from the press conference this morning:

This morning’s press conference comes on the heels of news of over 150 job losses this week. Yesterday Citi Hedge Fund Services confirmed they will move approximately 100 jobs from Bermuda to North America, while Willowbank Hotel in Sandys Parish confirmed they will close, and 46 part/full time employees will lose their jobs in November. In addition, Bacardi confirmed on Monday that they will be laying off 13 staff members at the end of this year.

The Premier’s full statement follows below:

The negative impact of the recession which followed the global financial and economic crisis that began in 2008 continues to hinder business growth and development in Bermuda. With little prospect now of an uptick in local economic conditions it is important that remedial actions be taken now.

These negative effects are also evident in our major trading and commercial partners, especially in the United States. As a testimony to how serious the economic problems are and how sluggish the recovery is, growth projections for advanced economies have been revised downwards from 2.2 percent to 1.6 percent for 2011.

Depending on how serious confidence effects are, growth for developed countries in 2012 could range between 1.2 and 2.2 percent. These countries are Bermuda’s main trading partners.

As a result, business activity in Bermuda has been slow to recover. In fact, in many instances scaling back by some businesses and the associated redundancies are taking a debilitating toll on many Bermudian families. This is a serious matter that requires an immediate response.

Therefore, in taking note of this continuing economic malaise and the possible social consequences, Government will immediately institute several temporary emergency measures to assist businesses that have a pressing need for financial relief.

The retail sector has been particularly hard hit by the continuous decline in sales volume over the last several years. Discussions with industry leaders have been bleak but sobering.

Therefore, with effect from October 1, 2011, the following measures will be instituted:

  • Payroll tax will be set at a zero rate for the retail sector for a six month period ending on 31st March 2012
  • Travelers’ allowances for returning residents will be restricted to one person per household for a six month period ending on 31st March 2012
  • The duty on accompanied goods declared by returning residents will be increased from 25% to 35%

The payroll tax relief is intended to provide cost reduction to businesses in the retail sector so that doors may be kept open and staff may be retained. It will also provide workers in the sector with additional spending power.

The measures related to residents returning from overseas business and vacation trips are to help steer expenditure into the local retail sector. These measures are aimed at helping to boost sales and keep approximately 4,000 Bermudians employed in local stores.

In addition, Government will consider if there is another means of collecting duty on luxury items that sometimes can sit in inventory for a year or longer before being sold. Collecting duty up front on such items presents a cash flow challenge that is often solved by financing arrangements that have a carrying cost.

The fiscal implications are that these actions will reduce the inflow of Government revenue, but the pressure on Bermuda’s economy, and especially the pain being experienced by many Bermudians will be eased somewhat.

The projected deficit at the end of this fiscal year, as a result of the net revenue shortfall is estimated to widen by a sum of $3-5 million.

The decision was not easy but it was necessary in order to help vulnerable business sectors and people in these challenging economic and financial conditions. Government has provided already similar concessions to the hotel and restaurant sectors.

The budget goal at the beginning of the 2011-2012 financial year was to focus on deficit reduction. This stance was based on the assumption that we would see a slow but sustained improvement in economic conditions globally and also in Bermuda.

However so far, a sustained recovery has not materialized. Quite to the contrary, there is some risk of a double-dip recession given the continuing turmoil in global markets.

In these circumstances, leaders must act in the best interests of their countries. We must act to preserve the basic well being and welfare of our people. People who are hurting as a result of these very difficult economic conditions must be helped.

The proposed measures highlighted above will help our people and our businesses. Therefore they justify the temporary revenue shortfall. Deficit reduction is a medium to long term strategy. Employment that is related to family income is an immediate problem that must be addressed now.

In addition to the above measures, Government will provide a guarantee to the West End Development Corporation so that it may proceed with the low cost housing project at Ireland Island. This project will provide at different times in excess of 100 jobs.

With respect to redundancies in other sectors, the Department of Labour and Training will offer retraining programmes for persons seeking to acquire skills for available jobs.

In addition, families who have fallen seriously behind in rent or mortgage payments and are at risk of being evicted or losing their home may apply to the Pension Commission for access to a portion of their private pensions.

Finally and fundamentally, Government is committed to helping people and business sectors in difficult financial circumstances through this recession. It will not last forever. Government’s strategy is one that embraces Repair, Reform, Rebalance and Rebuild.

Repair what needs to be done now to sustain businesses and help people’s pockets with short term temporary relief is good.

This speaks to relieving business balance sheet pressures, the lack of consumer demand which is causing businesses to have lower yields based on lower demand and low spending and to make people redundant.

So one has to apply the tools at one’s disposal. The above actions will inject more money into consumers’ pocket books and they will also encourage people to spend locally.

By restricting the duty free allowance to only one person per family as opposed to two or more, and increasing the duty rate from 25 percent to 35 percent, this will discourage personal spending abroad.

These measures also operates as levers to help preserve jobs. – all of us working together as one team will get us back on our feet.

When a family loses a job – it hurts us all and it means less activity in the economy. We have to seek to change that. It is about the here and now.

Although most economists will tell you these problems will resolve themselves over the long run. Right now you and I cannot live in the long run. For us, these problems are very real today.

Reform is also speaking to the future – the temporary measures will provide time for businesses to consider innovative and new ways of developing and growing their market base.

Rebalance is getting fundamental economic relationships back in synch as we move towards recovery. It also speaks to opportunities for diversification by moving to green technologies.

Rebuild – providing businesses and people with opportunities to build a new platform for moving forward fiercely with confidence.

The path is clear. The time is now. We must act.

We have to act now and see results.

That is the aim of the temporary rescue measures announced today.

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Comments (356)

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  1. YES MATE! says:

    Ms Cog, while you have your pen out and are in the mood to repeal, add term limits to the list of things to get rid of.

    • Jay says:

      She says that this is to discourage spending overseas, but notice that this is an immediate measure. There will be hundreds of residents who’ve already made / are now making their purchases overseas and will come back next week to a very bad surprise. That’s underhand and unfair.

      It may also be counterproductive. I might pay 25% to bring some new clothes through the airport because, although I would only pay 6.5% if I shipped them, I also have the hassle and cost of shipping. 35%, though, makes shipping more worthwhile. So Paula would only collect 6.5% on my purchases instead of the 25% she could have got.

      Expect longer queues at the post office.

    • PLPPER says:

      Tax should be much higher

  2. Black Soil says:

    This is all just tinkering. It does not affect the big picture. I want to see how government POLICY towards international business and tourism will CHANGE in order to reverse the slow-but-steady demise of Bermuda. I also want to know when the PLP will reverse their policy on education, their policy of placing our black youth in a permanent state of underclass. Our crap education is now coming home to roost. Shame on them!! PLP were suppose to raise us UP! I am very disappointed!

  3. Real Talk says:

    So you’re in essence Forcing people who couldn’t afford to by certain items in Bermuda to now have to come up with more money?? How is the Beneficial to the people struggling already? How about putting a markup limit on what retailers can place on top of already high prices and make items more affordable locally so we don’t need to look overseas for them?

    • Curious says:

      If you can’t afford to buy things in Bermuda, how exactly can you afford to travel to buy things. You aren’t making any sense.

      How is it beneficial, simple. Protecting Jobs in Local retail, and keeping more money in Bermuda.

      Money spent abroad hurts our economy, stop being selfish and look at the bigger picture.

      If we had MORE retail in Bermuda we’d have better variety and lower prices, this is a well overdue move. Now we just need to do that same to ZipX and what not.

      • Truth says:

        “Money spent abroad hurts our economy, stop being selfish and look at the bigger picture.”

        Agreed, now if only that could be applied to the millions spent on overseas consultants. Would be nice to have that money stay ‘local’ too.

        • Local Shopper says:


        • Watching! says:

          Well said truth. I know of one particular scenario where they are paying a consultant a lot of money but the Bermudian nothing. And let’s say, that the Bermudian has more experience..not right as Govt is doing everything to protect this foreigner. There is more to this story which will make your blood boil but not worth exposing on this forum.

        • Mik3 says:


        • Jazzy says:

          Overseas consultants aren’t to blame here – putting people in power who have absolutely no clue what they are doing (MP’s and Civil Servants alike!), what else you gonna do? They need to have people come in and put right all the sh** they caused!

      • The Fact says:

        May be if the reatil sector had better quality products and better service then MAYBE, more people would spend their well earned money here.

        • Instant Migraine! says:

          Glad I’m not the only person who realizes this!!

          • Princess says:

            Hmmm let me guess . You work as an acountant , lawyer, mechanic, teacher, electrician, IT person, trash truck driver, whatever….and you are not complaining althouhg you probably make 2X – 3X more than the average person in the US. Yet you complain when you have to pay more for products you buy in bermuda. You LOVE it when you make more, but hate it when you have to spend more! Wake up…rent is probably 4X more than the US, we dont have the purchasing power that a Walmart has so we pay more, wages are easily 2X – 4X more (when you consider heath and pension) and we have to pay 22.25% duty on most impored goods. If I import something and it is wrong or broken…I must eat the cost and “write it off” as a loss because it is a loss. Walmart and Amazon dont have these problems. Dont believe me ….try calling Amazon to complain or return something….good luck. Wake up . Typical response from someone living here…I WANT and DESERVE MORE….but make the other guy pay for it .

      • Young Bermuda says:

        @curious…. are you serious??? isnt everything that coomes into Bermuda, from overseas? doesnt retailers buy from U.S., U.K., etc wholesalers. So now that the common folk have decided to travel overseas to purchase their goods( Might i add that most times cant be found here) then the govt wants to increase duty tariffs… thats incredible… if this was such a good idea then why hasnt it had an impact since changing the duty fees the last time… I am a PLP supporter buty all that seems to be coming from them is knee jerk reactions that they think is going to “fix” everything…. and yes beleive it or not to purchase a ticket to travel overseas and buy a tv is cheaper than purchasing a tv on the island… hows about being proactive before the proverbial “sh** hit the fan and assembled the business community and for their problems…. maybe we could have avoided the whole thing in the first place….

        • BTW says:

          Exactly! I recently purchased a tv while overseas and the total cost of bringing it to Bermuda was $343 (rounded up). Imagine my surprise when I saw the EXACT tv advertized by a local retailer for $549!!! WHY the $200 increase? Bear in mind I paid retail for my tv while, presumably, the local retailer is purchasing the same item at a whosale price. There is no excuse for such a ridiculous increase. If the retail sector wants people to shop locally they need to stop the greedy mark-ups and start offering value for dollar.

          And don’t blame the cost of duty and the overhead cost- this does not justify the ridiculous prices. Another example, a package of cookies that sells for $1.99 overseas, is available at a Hamilton store for $8.95!!!! There is no justification for that.

          Futhermore, I work hard for my money and should be able to spend it when and where I please. How dare the government try to hold me hostage by forcing me to shop locally for overpriced goods without protecting my rights as a consumer? Madam Premier needs to realize that there are far more consumers who vote than there are retailers. When is the next election? I can’t WAIT!!!

        • Local shopper says:

          Maybe you would prefer 30% income tax? See how that would affect you. But at least prices here would be cheaper if there was no duty for retailers. Also the so-called huge markup goes to pay wages mostly. Overseas businesses don’t pay Bermuda wages. But what do you all care. You’ll only be happy when all the retailers have gone and you’ll have to order everything from socks to toothpaste from overseas. Oh – silky me. That’ll only be the people with jobs. I guess the 4,000 unemployed people who used to work in retail here will hopefully be employed at Walmart.

      • Cha says:

        Considering that when the Gov’t built Laughlands and the other Gov’t endorsed housing by Burch, they dropped duty down to 0% and brought in all the tiles and building supplies duty free to lower the cost. If they we so concerned for retailers why did they not get the supplies locally from places like Baptist, Bermuda Glass and PVC windows…

        just sayin, they are hypocrites.

      • unbelieveable says:

        You dont know what ya talking about…ppl can buy a plane ticket for cheap do all the shopping they want away come back pay duty and it still would have been cheaper than doing all your shopping in Bermuda. I don’t buy nothing in Bermuda every company marks up prices 50% or more so us as Bermudians are paying almost double for something that we want and its not fair. Government officials do what they want whether it be PLP or dis new BS party they all still making 120,000 a year so they can afford it but what about us that are not making that…what ever they do still hurts the working class they make rules beneficial to them. When it was brought up for government to take pay cuts none of them wanted to do it…I wonder why but they expect to cut everyone else’s budget. bunch of hypocrites.

    • joonya says:


    • Princess says:

      If you have the ability to TRAVEL you probably have disposable income! If you cant afford it…you probably should be taking a vacation oversea, Your argument makes no sense. My guess is that you are either going away soon, or not a supporter of our Premeire, Mrs, Cox. Give her na break. She was tossed into the lions den with steak sewn onto her clothes. At least she is trying. THose of us that can NOT affort too travel will benefit from the lower prices. If you have the funds to slurge on a trip ,,,,,you will have to pay.

      • theotherside says:

        “benefit from the lower prices”…do you really expect retailers to lower prices now that their payroll tax has been eliminated? Dream on. Prices will remain the same as margins are already razor thin.

  4. 32n64w says:

    “The budget goal at the beginning of the 2011-2012 financial year was to focus on deficit reduction.”

    Ok, so where are the interim financial statements so the electorate can see how good a job the PLP is doing when comparing actual results to budgeted projections?

    “The time is now. We must act.”

    Oh now you want to take action. What about three+ years ago?

  5. Waiting Patiently says:

    HAHA thats not a 10% jump… thats a 40% jump.

    this lady is so thick. drop the payroll so hopefully retail prices go down (good move), but then raise price at airport so people with less money as it is are more focred to “buy bermuda”??? wtf ?????

    waiting patiently for my ticket out of here!! lol and yes, im bermudian.

    • bestisland says:


    • George says:

      Its an increase in import duty from 25-35% – a difference of 10%. That’s why they state it as such! ; )

      • Ian says:

        No, they’ve dropped the payroll tax in order that the retail business can afford to pay it’s workers….

      • cottage says:

        George… when you increase it from 25 to 35% it is an additional 10% of the cost of the item… BUT it is actually a 40% increase in the duty payment from what you already paid. eg 10/25 x 100% = 40% … in otherwords not only is gov going to get 40% more in duty tax revenue from goods when $100 duty free is exceeded, they will also get that $100 and additional $35 each time you travel within 6 months, if you declare, and that of all household members. What does that say for house share people? Will their computer system pop up a warning within a 6 month window & keep track of who is living with who?

    • Fed Up says:

      I am not Bermudian and I am so tired of the nasty customer service I get I would rather go away and get better service

      • Local shopper says:

        So tell the management when this happens. They would rather know about it and fire bad people and hire new staff than lose customers. They may not realize they have rude staff. I don’t know where all these rude people are as I rarely encounter any. They are the exception rather than the rule in my experience. I have encountered more rude people in government jobs than in retail. And they are getting better now…

      • RN says:

        I am guilty of only shopping away..but where do shop.. not in the USA…they don’t even acknowledge you not even when your at the register. I would die for half the customer service of the average sales person in Bermuda. and notice I did not say the worse sales person in Bermuda.

    • Princess says:

      If you have LESS money …you travel? Who exactlt are you trying to fool? C’mon listen to yourself.

  6. Concerned Bermudian says:

    WOW!!!…. Yet again the average man is being made to try and fill the financial gaps created by the PLP’s mismanagement of the government purse! Way to stick it to average man.

    • Curious says:

      You mean one of the 4000 Bermudians working in retail that just got their payroll taxes eliminated for 6 months.. Yeah, exactly, Sticking it to the average man.

      Are you that blinded that you cannot see this will help many of your fellow Bermudians?

      • LOL (original) says:

        I think he’s talking about the duty at the airport when you reenter the country.


  7. street talk says:

    Raising the bar %10 wont stop me from spending abroad. I will still get what I really want for cheaper then what these retailers will sell it for.

    • Real Talk says:

      Sad but so True! I’d rather pay an extra 10 % duty then pay what retailers locally want for the same item!!

      • Terry says:

        Thats not real talk……………………..thats bullsh%t.

        No local retailers =

        NO EMPLOYMENT…………………………..

        If you want cash, you fly to New York and use your card?

        I give up………………………………………………….f#ck it………………………….

        • street talk says:

          Terry do us a favor and hit your head real hard..Do we think these Guest workers spend their money in Bermuda?

          They hold the avergage to poor hostige but not these so called workers..

          • Hudson says:

            Yes, they do, and lots of it. Retailers are hurting in part because of the exodus of work permit holders and their families leaving. They were the big spenders! I do shop locally when i can, and to be fair, i don’t think that most prices are completely out of line with what you get in most US states or Canada. Certainly cheaper than teh UK too! Bermuda is in dire straights – i pity the next government trying to turn this ship around. It’s ugly out there, and only a few are willing to call a spade a spade.

          • joey says:

            guest workers do spend.. this summer there were some 73 azorean workers from construction, landscaping and cleaners sent home packing.
            one local mom pop grocery store says they have seen a decline in their coffee sales, these guys would stop off in the morning and pick up coffee, a snack or sandwich, beer or packs of smokes, its a knock down effect, theres loss in reveunue to local businesses, loss in rent, cell fone, internet, gas , electricty and food sales.. it all adds up and also the 2 vacations a year they used to take….

          • Jazzy says:

            Actually, I think you’ll find that rather a lot of the money spent in Bda is spent by “guest workers” and to be frank, most ex-pats I know think more of Bermuda than any Bermudian! Every ex-pat job lost is less payroll tax, less need for rental properties, less spent in shops – the list goes on, but WTF, I give up….

  8. LOL (original) says:

    What about dropping payroll tax for Bermudian workers that the company can demonstrate that they are training for mid level or managerial jobs within that company? Just a thought as this would appeal to the companies bottom line showing we are a welcoming environment and would stimulate companies to make the “Sven and Johnny” to burrow Dr. Browns speech a reality.

    LOL did I just say that wooo…..


    • Curious says:

      There is currently NO payroll tax for trainees and apprentices. Already there mate.

      • LOL (original) says:

        Wait so the company I work for pays no pay roll tax for full time Bermudian staff that training to move ahead into more senior positions. I don’t think that’s quit right. Please let me know what companies this applies too as I don’t think it applies to exempt companies I might be wrong.


        • CFA???? says:

          You have to registered as an apprentice/trainee or something like that and this position has to be approved etc. Again too much red tape so people do not bother with it.

          • LOL (original) says:

            ok withdrawn.


          • Concerned says:


          • Concerned says:

            Absolutely no vision for our future. Lets see what tomorrow brings. Make some real changes that will effect all of us, not just a select few. LEVEL THE PLAYING FIELD FOR ALL. Heading off island for a break and yes plan on buying whatever I feel like. Retailers locally need to be more creative on their own. P.S. I buy locally whenever I need something (if I can find it). THIS WILL FIX NOTHING IF PEOPLE ARE NOT SPENDING.

  9. Johnny Guard says:

    Lets see if the retail sector will decrease prices now that they dont have to pay payroll tax!!

    • bestisland says:

      please you wish, Christmas is coming up

    • Johnny says:

      It will be exactly the opposite. Prices will go up more, giving retailers a 400 percent profit on their goods.

    • Not Gonna Happen says:

      Of course they won’t lower their prices because they’ll still be in the same circumstance they were in before the payroll tax relief! If you’re making $10 and payout $9, your only making $1. But with the payroll tax relief that $9 payout turns to $7 or $8 thus letting you make $2-$3 so you can keep the doors open. If you lower prices though, you’ll be back to $1 cause that $10 income now turns to $8 or $9 but the $7-$8 payout is still there (belco, rent, telephone)….think about it. No reduction in retail prices for us anytime soon people unless something is done about the outrages cost of real estate and utilities!

  10. Watching! says:

    While I applaud the knee jerk reaction, you can rest assured that the greedy retailers will not lower their prices or markup they will simply get greedier and take full advantage of this.

    • Johnny Guard says:

      Yup, and I wonder who in Govt will make sure that they lower their prices

    • Hudson says:

      The “Greedy retailers” are trying to stay in business. How about a little support?

      • Apocalypto says:

        How about some good customer service !!!!!

      • What???? says:

        The prices in Bermuda are far above what they should or need to be, first of all. Bermuda is the most expensive place to live. So expensive that local residents cannot afford it… That should make Bermuda shamed! I hate that I am back in this awful country with these idiots in power making these unthought off decisions. Regulate the prices, more Bermudians and non Bermudians will spend and biz will increase. If america is your competition than actually make yourself competitive with them. Decrease the cost to import goods into Bermuda and regulate the mark up prices. Retailers set prices at whatever they want and that shit don’t fly in the USA because the consumers have the finally say in what they purchase. They have consumer protection laws. The products and customer service here is the worse I have every experienced in my life in all the countries I have visited. Bermudians are rude, many are uneducated especially that work in these retailers. You want to fix Bermuda than fix Bermuda for the long term not these reactive bandaid fixes. Bermuda is a beautiful place but sadly thats all it has going for herself. Beauty on the outside and ugly on the inside the worse kind of person to deal with… Yes I am sadly Bermudian.

    • Princess says:

      No I probably won’t lower pricces….you are correct. However, the one employee that I was going to unfortuanelly lay off at the end of October, will be able to keep her job a bit longer hopefully until Christmas when things pick up. Although I have not been able to afford to keep her on staff (because of declining sales) I have done all that I can to keep her on because she is a hard worker, with kids and a pension. However, things at my company tend to slow down after September and I had already decided that I could not afford to keep her after October. Now, with what I can now save by not paying payroll tax on my 9 employees, I can keep her on until things pick up…if they pick up. The payroll tax isnt about lowering prices…it is about saving jobs.

    • Local shopper says:

      The employees part of the payroll tax is paid to the employee, not Government. It doesn’t go into the employers pocket. It is only the employers portion that us being saved. In the overall costs of doing business it is not very much. However it may mean the difference between laying someone off or keeping them.

    • Canuck says:

      I’m a Canadian working for a retailer here in Bermuda, so say what you will about ‘greedy retailers’ but from my view retailers are struggling just as much as anyone else. Many smaller retailers on the island have closed up shop just because they didn’t have the cash reserves to keep them afloat while suffering the net losses of doing business over the past 2 years. Luckily the company I work for was smart with their revenue before the recession hit and has been supporting itself via its savings. The payroll tax relief is a two-pronged approach, to lower the operating costs of retailers (to keep retailers alive), and to give employees a bit more cash in their pockets (to spend at retailers).

  11. 1minute says:

    There goes Christmas shopping.
    I hope they are not planning a Christmas election…

  12. ICT says:

    Was any thought given to the college students that travel back and forth??

    • CFA???? says:

      Who cares about students they have already destroyed the labour market for you when you get back….stay abroad earn some real experience in the mean time.

    • Lea says:

      course not.. and being college students we have a lot of disposible money..

    • Princess says:

      When I went to college….I was broke! And so was everyone else around me. ????

  13. Triangle Drifter says:

    Financial fiddling. The little guy gets hit the hardest. Hope they remember when they get to the polls.

    I am old enough to remember the days of sterling. Back then you were allowed something like the equivilant of $1000.00 duty free per passenger. At least a weeks wages for the average person back then. I am not 100% sure but the catch might have been that you could only claim this duty free allowance once a year.

    It worked because air travel was very expensive then, compared to today, & most people only got off the Island once a year if they were lucky.

    This new policy of only $100, nothing really, per family group severly penalizes the family vacation/shopping trip.

    Shame on you Premier Cox & PLP Government. Hopefully the day of payback for you is not far off.

    • Curious says:

      Shame on your for supporting spending your money overseas while our economy needs our dollars here at home!

      I’m sorry, but people who are really struggling are not taking family vacations and shopping trips. We talk about buying Bermuda, we should either do it, or pay more money when we don’t.

      • I'm just saying... says:

        Shame on you Curious!

        If I scrimp and save to be able to take a family vacation not just to shop but to expose my kids to different cultures or environments and then decide to by any goods (usually school supplies…laptops-shoes-books-knapsacks ect) I should be charged 35% duty on the goods because;
        A. local stores dont stock items
        B. I have more choice
        C. price is better

        Business will take care of itself, IE: they will adapt or die!
        Why should I underwrite a greedy merchants (and I’m not saying they all are!) vacation or second home?

        By Bermuda? Hell I buy where I get value for money and service and don’t care if it is here or overseas, I work hard for my money and will choose where to spend it!

        • S says:

          @ I’m just saying.

          I totally agree with you!

        • not surprised says:

          AMEN @ im just saying!!! You hit the nail on the head! @ curious, if you think for one second that this will help your economy think again! I am on vacation now I have saved for a year to be able to come on this vacation and have planned on buying things i can not get in Bermuda. All this has done is infuriate me, and i will NOT be buying Bermuda if i do not have to! that GOV could have done something way better, like cut their pay and get rid of gov cars! none of that is necessary, but once again they have stuck it to us little people! And to make it ” immediate”, no warning really!? This is going to be a great welcome home. NOT All this is going to do is make people like me save save save to get the hell out of dodge!

        • Truth says:


      • Tired!!! says:

        If the retailers where to offer the customer the products they need an want, instead of what their buyer thought was fashion, then we would not need to shop overseas. Further more, people have the right to spend their hard earned money on what ever they want and where ever they want.

      • Johnny says:

        Where do you think the people that own businesses spend their money. We go into their shops and spend our hard earned money, knowing that we are getting ripped off. The owners take our money, put their children in private school (here or abroad, neither of which puts money back into our economy). They build their houses with goods from abroad, and workers from abroad, who send all of their money abroad.

        why should I be forced to pay extra for nothing?

        • Hudson says:

          Johnny, what planet are you living on? How can you say that “… neither of which puts money back into our economy”. Teachers salarys? Teachers have to eat, pay rent, get insurance, buy clothes etc. Houses? Mortgage payments to banks – bermudian employment there too. It’s called a trickle down effect. We need businesses to stay open, and not closed. It’s simple economics. Your ignorance is frightening.

          • Mik3 says:

            You are right Hudson. They just see their rights as a consumer. They forget the organization they work for needs to make money to pay them.

      • What???? says:

        Shut up! You cannot tell ppl how n where to spend there money. This is a biz problem and the biz should figure our the concepts of suppy and demand… You cannot make this our problem. Bermuda is to expensive for no reason…

      • Waiting Patiently says:

        at the end of the day, the STORES should be making us want to shop in bermuda, NOT the GOVT

  14. Just saying!! says:

    Ok – Sting it to the little man again. Was there any mention in the cogs speech about her or her minsters taking a pay cut or something along that line to help Bermuda. Oh no, just take it from the little man as always.

  15. ICT says:

    So duty gone up to 35% and retail shops no payroll tax. I’m guessing the shops are going to drop their prices Right??? Because if they don’t drop their prices this whole change is futile and helps nobody.

    • Waiting Patiently says:

      not entirely true. While lowered prices may convince more people to shop there, keeping prices the same but with lower expenses gives more money to teh store, basiclaly stopping or slowing the bleeding.

      with the amount of effort it would take to totally adjust a stores pricing, i doubt that will be what happens.

  16. Shopping Abroad says:

    This short term fix is so short sighted and will not work.
    The only people who get hurt are those that can least afford it. I can imagine the Customs Officers at LFW will be even more heavy handed now as residents bring back undeclared goods and searches will become more common.
    It still does not solve the problem of gauging in the high street.
    I support local businesses as much as possible and yet my latest purchase was $242 more in Reid Street than what I paid in the US even taking into account shipping and duty.
    I can see Steve Thomson and ZipXpress rubbing their hands

    • Curious says:

      “The only people who get hurt are those that can least afford it.” I need you to explain that because I take an opposite view.

      Only people who pay more are those that can afford to take a trip away and come back with a bunch of stuff.

      Promoting retail in Bermuda is a good thing, not JUST Reid and Front street, but on court street and in Somerset and St George’s.

      We need to provide greater protection to our local industry especially in the midst of a recession.

      • CFA???? says:

        Curious lets look at it:
        1) Have they lowered the cost of goods? no! They have lowered the cost structure for the retailers to make more money rather than have to pass on those costs. Thus no real savings to the shopper – maybe people keep their jobs yes but lets be real retailers are running pretty slim right now and only a six months break will not have a huge affect on jobs for the long term. If the PLP keeps blaming the global crisis they must know its going to last longer than six months.

        2) In order to run the country you need money. Obviously the hike in duty is to raise money. Unfortunately what people will do is wait 6 months to make major purchases abroad thus effectively lowing government revenues.

        Sometimes protecting an industry does more harm in the end then initially intended…ask the U.S. steel makers and people in Pittsburgh.

        • BTW says:

          I don’t believe the duty will go back to 25% after six months. Call me skeptical but…

    • trees says:

      wow seems like Paula Cox is desperate!!

      A vote for the PLP is a vote to financial slavery!!

      • Derek Simons says:

        This seems so true how many of Paula’s crew took a cut in Pay to help
        the one’s that really are struggling. NONE!!

  17. That's crap says:

    Unbelievable! PLEASE lets have an election real soon!

    Happy for the retail people, but very unfortunate for those that have to get off this small minded, shallow minded rock to see the world and yes shop too, will be punished. This will cause the traveler to declare very minimal, where normally they would declare truthfully.

    Shame shame shame.

  18. Old School Friend says:

    Restricting duty free allowance and raising the duty is STILL not going to deter me from making purchases overseas. I wouldn’t have a problem shopping in
    Bermuda if, (A) the shops carried what you want. (B) better customer service. I can still get better value for my money overseas. Local shops prices are CRAZY!! Some stores with 300% mark up!!! How about putting policy in place for these stores and their mark ups.

  19. Dawn de Toilet says:

    Do you really think by raising the duty it will solve the shops problems? Not likely! People arent shopping cause they have no jobs and cant afford the prices at what the retailers are selling things at. We are also cutting back on our spending cause everything is so expensive and we dont know how much worse things are going to get. On top of that we dont like the merchandise the stores carry everything has become too expensive! This rise in duty may stop a lot of us shopping abroad and online but that wont fix the retailers problem.
    All you do is make people angry when you raise the duty without raising our allowance. We need to go back to when we had atleast 300 dollar allowance. This 100 dollar duty free allowance is a BIG JOKE!

  20. bestisland says:

    we know who was and is the finance minister who messed everything up. On our next trip abroad we will still buy overseas and get even better specials and still save.

    Best Buy IPOD Touch 32Gb (non Christmas special) $275 (less $100 allowance plus 35% duty) equals $236. That is still less than the $385 you pay for an 8GB Ipod Touch on the island

    • dee dee says:

      The cost of the plane ticket and hotel stay and meals and transportation need to be a factor in this. When you add it all up, You spend just as much money on goods overseas as in Bermuda. The average shopper travels for atleast 3-4 days, with a hotel in the range of 95-190 per day. Car rental is about $500. Ticket is about $400-500.

      I agree that the local retailers need to provide the service to earn our hard earned dollars. They need to stop gauging John & Jane Q. Public.

      • bestisland says:

        No the airticket does not need to be factored in, because we include the shopping (if we buy) within our annual overseas holiday, so we are there already. Not all people travel just to shop, some travel to have a holiday and combine shopping with it. Of course if you travel just to shop then it does not make sense, so from that perpective I agree

    • Moojun says:

      Dude, your math is wrong. The $100 allowance is only for the duty calculation, you don’t actually get given $100 back:

      +$275 cost at Best Buy
      +$22 US sales tax
      +$61.25 duty at airport (35% of $275-$100)
      = total cost of $358.25 vs $385 if bought locally

      For such a small mark up, I’d personaly support the local reatiler and keep a fellow Bermudian emplyed at the store.

      • bestisland says:

        agreed, my mistake and yes those darm US taxes. Remember the $358 you calculated is for a 32GB IPOD Touch and not the 8GB on the island. But I think we all agree the retailers need to lower their prices

        • Moojun says:

          True, yes I had missed the 32GB vs 8GB part. I do think some local retailers are better than others though and it’s up to us to shop carefully when we choose to go local. Some are pirates and some are actually quite reasonable vs the U.S. The big problem though is choice, as has been said elsewhere in this thread, 60% of the time they just don’t carry what it is that I want.

          Ah well at least it’s only an increase at the airport (for now). I will just have to start mailing stuff home before I get on the plane…

        • J says:

          you forgot on thing… and that’s IF you declare the ipod at all!! The amount of goods we all as Bermudians bring through customs without declaring is also factored into a consumer’s choice to shop abroad.

    • Princess says:

      I just saw your posting and decided to contact three local companies and check your price of $385 for an iPOD Touch!

      I checked Computer City $335 see online at
      Redlaser $315 called at 296-6400
      Complete Office $315 called at $292-4333

      Where are you shopping in Bermuda?

      • Waiting Patiently says:

        You didnt read what he said.

        He said the 32GB Ipod was 385.

        The ones you show are 8GB.

        the ipod he is referring to at computer city is 499

  21. your joking says:

    Does that now include all the ministers that go one trips…will they be made to go through customs now instead of bypassing it as always?…

    • Instant Migraine! says:

      HELLO! I’d REALLY like to know that!

      • Hollar! says:

        Agreed! Government needs to lead by example! I hope to see Cox and all her ministerial buddies out shopping tonight in Hamilton’s “Fashion’s Night Out”!!

        • What says:

          Probably will now, although this time without the unecessary press coverage please.

      • S says:

        ME TOO!!

    • Can u hear me now? says:

      Interesting question!! Several years ago I was on a website that listed the perks for the MPs and one of the items listed was that they were exempt from paying customs duties. I don’t know if this is true or not – and at this particular time we’re not likely to get a straight (or honest) answer – but if it is true we can all see why such decisions can be made so willy-nilly. Those still wearing the rose-coloured glasses need to take them off and see who really is having to do more for/with less and who is still living the high life. Am I better off under this government? No, I’m not and I suspect that I have a heck of a lot of company!!

  22. Sandgrownan says:

    Well, this is merely tinkering, and poorly executed tinkering at that. What retailers really need, and have been asking for for years, is to apply duty at teh cash register not at the airport.

    As other have said, this is a desperation, knee jerk reaction and doesn’t look at fundamental and wide reaching solutions.

    She is clearly out of her depth. Another PLP success story!


    • Can You See Me Now says:

      Who makes money off of custom duty? Government!

      • Absolutely! While Mrs. Cog is trying to make it look as if she is HELPING the local shops in fact she has just very nicely INCREASED the government’s revenue by 10% on custom duty!!! Wow! talk about spin! This government is masters at spin but not much else! So here we go again PLP doing less for us the people of Bermuda while they take yet more $$$$ from us, the people of Bermuda. The cookie jar is empty so lets find another way to fill it back up again so we can empty it again and keep repeating the process.

        • Can You See Me Now says:

          What’s the biggest revenue generator for Government? Custom’s Duty!!

        • Beez Evans says:

          Sadly the cookie jar is not only empty, its shattered on the floor. The govt of the day must find ways to fuel the islands economy. The slight 10% increase will probably barely cover the loss of payroll taxes over the next 6 months.

  23. island girl says:

    I have already purchased my ticket to fulfill my annual Christmas shopping extravaganza…but the belt will be tightened and the list shortened! Might even have to use the services of US Express to bring in what I want…not what some of the local retailers offer!

    • USPS says:

      @ island girl

      I use USPS and they were excellent! I had 2 big white boxes of stuff and when it got here I only paid $35 in duty. Clothes are 6.5% and shoes are 10% duty through the post office and it only took 5 days to arrive here!

      You should try it!

      • island girl says:

        thanks USPS.. I often use them to bring in things I cannot find in Bda!
        On another note, I was looking for a particular charger cord and was told by a local company that they don’t stock it…and they would have to order it…which means tacking on their extra’s. I waited for a week for them to get back to me with the price, and they never did, so I ordered it myself (after doing some research)and am having it sent to me via USPS!
        So much for shopping Bermuda! I’m sure it would cost me next to nothing to bring in a $30 item that the local company would probably charge me $60 for!

  24. Just Saying Too says:

    I feel sorry for the Customs Officers who have to tell the returning passengers that the rate of duty has increased.

    • Sandgrownan says:

      Nah, screw ‘em. Nobody likes them anyway.

      • Just Saying Too says:

        There are a few nice ones down there, I have seen some new faces that have been in Hamilton working

  25. Red Flag says:

    What is most important is protecting Bermudian Jobs. That is what today’s action is for.
    The government will continue to act and we will not wait until the next budget to take additional action. We must upgrade the skills of our workforce and protect Bermudian Jobs.  We all have a part to play by shopping locally and the government must lead by example

    • Real Talk(original) says:

      Actually, hopefully by the next budget we have a new government…

      Lead by example as in ‘doing more with less’ and continuing to pay overseas consultants?

      • Derek Simons says:

        I sure hope so because this government is doing just as they like. You mess with my money and i will kick you to the curb QUICK!!!

    • 32n64w says:

      Red Flag I agree 100% with the concept of shopping locally whenever possible but if you’re going to make comments like this …

      “We all have a part to play by shopping locally and the government must lead by example”

      how does that reconcile with the PLP paying an overseas sculptor for the Dame Lois statue when we have world class talent locally? Did the PLP make a mistake?

      … and there are countless other examples besides this one.

    • PLP's gonna get ya says:

      Are you actually backing Paula on this? Poor misguided Paula, Puppet Paula?? One more time for fun…you really believe this? Words fail me….this hits ordinary people in the pockets at a time when they can least afford it, and I reckon it could just cost Paula her job.

  26. I'll take it says:

    If you cant afford the extra duty then you shouldn’t be traveling and shopping in the first place.

    I buy Bermuda all the time. End of Summer/fall I buy summer clothes on sale and keep them for next year.
    Same in the spring, I buy all the winter clothing that has gone on sale.

    I may be behind the time as far as fashion goes but I’m trying to survive and retain some dollars in my pocket rather than pose and look better than my neighbor.

    Those that need the latest and the best of things will have to pay. Simple

    Priorities people……

    • Poppa Bermy says:

      so because we dont want to do what you do then we should be punished…. sounds like Capitalism to me…

    • Shake My Head says:

      @ I’ll take it.
      People don’t always go away to shop. It’s other reasons to leave this island. Kudoes to you for being the perfect person!

      • I'll take it says:

        @ Poppa. There is no punishment. If you can’t afford “luxuries” in life then don’t buy. Who says you have to wear a 150.00 pair of shoes. Travel and new clothes every day are not a necessity, they are a privilege for those that can afford to do so.

        @Shake my head. I’m far from perfect. Just realistic. I don’t want to be crying “my pockets are empty but i look damn good”. I’m not that vain.
        I enjoy spending as much as the next. but if i can’t afford it i don’t buy or travel.

        Will your world come to an end if you don’t have an IPOD
        Are people really moaning cause it’s getting harder to buy the latest and greatest. SMH Where are peoples values these days?

        • Shake My Head says:

          @ i’ll take it. Just so you know I bought my IPOD here last Christmas. I travel for Broadway Shows and eat in fine restaurants. you only live once and you should be allowed to travel and spend at least once a year without feeling guilty. It’s not about having the best of everything in your home or on your back or about being vain! I guess you want to be the devils adovacate right now. I hope you are listening to the talk shows as they will disagree with you too.

          • I'll take it says:

            By no means am i suggesting that one cannot travel or enjoy the finer things in life.

            Read my statement.
            I am saying that if you can’t afford to do so then don’t.
            It appears you are able to afford to so, props to you.

            That’s the simple fact I’m making here.

            There are ways to buy inexpensive here in Bermuda, unfortunately inexpensive purchasing in Bermuda happen to be 50-75% off sale items.

            FYI… you don’t pay duty on Broadway show’s and fine restaurants.
            We are talking about items brought back into Bermuda. If you don’t want to, or can’t afford to pay the duty then don’t shop.
            Just thought I’d bring you back to the real topic here.
            Bonne Voyage

            • Shake my Head says:

              Bonne Voyage! Thanks. i will enjoy my trip and my Broadway Show and my basketball game etc…I don’t need to shop all the time, it’s about pleasure and relaxing overseas while i take my child to college.

              • MH says:

                @Shake My Head – are you understanding what “I’ll take it” is trying to say – maybe you should re-read their posts?

                • Shake My Head says:

                  I understand what ‘I’ll take it’ is trying to say. Just didn’t appreciate his/her sarcasm. Thanks.

  27. nowayout says:

    At the end I think all Bermudians and residents are cutting back their expenses, so whether duty is up or down we are still spending less. If the retail stores will bring their prices back to be inline with the word “affordable”, then maybe we will buy here more often, but unfortunatley food is so expensive on the island and we all know that food comes before clothes and electrical equipment

  28. Huh?! says:

    Unless I see the following stores in Bermuda, I will continue to shop abroad:
    1. Express
    2. Target
    3. Old Navy
    4. Victoria Secret
    5. JCP

    The local stores do not even carry “tall” sizes for women. So I guess I better save up some more to help pay the increase cause selection is my issue, not price.

    • toosmallforlocalshopping says:

      I agree from the opposite side of the size spectrum. Local shops don’t really carry “petite” and even worse is trying to find a size 2 or smaller! JCP has plenty of selection at very good prices, as do Sears and Macy’s.

    • Dawn de Toilet says:

      I agree with you about those stores however they will never be in Bermuda cause they could never compete price wise. But I agree with you I can never find anything for tall plus sized women. I have to shop on QVC. This extra duty will however cut my spending. I guess I will have to walk around in “flood pants” and “belly button” showing tops as that is how they look when i buy any clothes locally.

    • Amy says:

      Right there with you Huh?! I wear tall clothing as well and you can’t get it in Bermuda.

      • dee dee says:

        and don’t talk about shoes – if you wear an 11 or higher, forget it. Overseas you have to go for a decent selection.

        • BTW says:

          Yup! The local shoe stores do not bring in a decent selection of larger sizes even though they are available from the manufacturers. Mailboxes & I will be great friends for the next six months.

    • Local Shopper says:

      I can assure you that their prices would not be the same as in the US. For one thing their wage bill would be tripled, and their rent would be at least doubled. Plus they would have to pay the same shipping costs as everyone else.

    • tick tock says:

      I agree. I too am a tall woman and it is impossible to find clothes that fit me in Bermuda, therefore I am forced to buy overseas.

    • Umm umm says:

      Moneys no a issue………. Can we get married!?!?!? Bling bling that the type of woman I need.

  29. Instant Migraine! says:

    I agree with trying to help keep our local retailers’ doors open and people employed. But sadly, like someone mentioned, if the retailers don’t 1) lower their prices, 2) expand their variety AND 3)improve customer service, it will not deter people from shopping online or abroad. Sorry just being honest, Bermuda’s customer service SUCKS ROYAL A**. A great number of people need adequate training.

    On another note, I wish Minister Wilson would stop making all these promises to people who are unfortunately losing their jobs in light of the current economic times. WHAT jobs are you going to give them? And WHAT ABOUT all the people who have been waiting all this time?? Feels like false hope is being created. Our current situation is just scary!

    • Local Shopper says:

      If the rents are reduced, and staff (and management) get paid less, they probably could.

  30. me says:

    f you are absent from Canada for more than 7 days, you may claim up to $750 CAD worth of goods duty free. 100 dollar allowance per family is NUTS!

    • Dawn de Toilet says:

      you can also take into Canada when visiting $60 gifts for friends and you arent charged duty!

    • Beez Evans says:

      Enlighten me on the income tax structure of Canada please. You are comparing Apples and Oranges. Bermuda relies on duty collection. Its a different revenue structure to Canada

  31. Shake My Head says:

    ELECTION ELECTION ELECTION!!! Shame on you Ms Cox! burning the poor folk as usual. You have lost my vote.
    Happy for the retailer but if they can afford a business here then they are considered ‘well off’ from the get go.

  32. Honestly says:

    Well…we can see clearly who is desperate for a vote! I have decided to vote for myself and continue to live according to my standards. If it means going overseas to purchase items and shop locally by all means, I will do so! To go into Hamilton to find a outfit for a special event will be just that “special” will not happen. Frustration sets in. Example: I just went on line and entered a search topic and BANG…saw exactly what I was looking for! Hamilton my foot…it is a joke and I am curious to see who is the buyers for the stores. Step out of their realm of buyers and they make come up with something for everyone. I have even come to the understanding that I have to go to Bennetton or Sisley to find something I like! ARGH! Where shall I go?

  33. I'm just saying... says:

    What utter crap!
    Our dutyfree allowance is $100 per person?
    Why not have it at a realistic level of say $700 to $1200.
    This isn’t helping anyone but Govt by increasing the rate of duty to 35%!

  34. Terry says:

    @ Huh?

    You want all those reatil outlets in Bermuda.

    Well I be damned.

    How much you pay for your KFC.

    Thats right, Walmart, Target el al won’t have to pay shipping to Bermuda. I forgot, …you take it to the docks in Penn./NY/Balt et al and they send it here free. I’ll be damed. Plus there’s no duty on imported goods. Man um havin a bad day hair……

    And…local truckers and/or other services bring it right to your store…..for FREE…….

    Where’s my needle………..

    • trees says:

      easy to say when you’re sitting on your rocking chair watching the sun rise in a distant land!!

      • Terry says:

        You addressing me Trees? If so, I think you lost afew leaves…….bwahaaaaa

        • trees says:

          we get winter a bit later in Bermy, I won’t be losing leaves for another month or so!

          • Terry says:

            Bwahaaaaa. Your gonna be loosing more than leaves in more than a month.

            Betta get your rake out, bag em and “Smoke” em……

            Anyway….my rocking chair calls and the view from Lefroy House is pretty good.

            Now….As you were…that just cost another .055%…..damn…..

    • Hollar! says:

      I don’t get it….

    • Bermudienne says:

      Actually, she was talking about lack of SELECTION – so yeah, she wants those retailers, even if the prices were higher than in the US. So do I.

    • Local Shopper says:

      I wish I knew these shippers and truckers…. :-)

  35. Truth is killin' me... says:

    This Government needs to be put out!!! Remember what they’re doing to your pockets people in tha next election. They ain’t done forks about our electricity bills. Why don’t they all take a salary squeeze for the next 6 months??!! FORK ‘EM!!!!!!!!

  36. Somerset Girl says:

    The Premier needs to have a conversation with the Pensions people. I am experiencing hardship in this area and becasue the Bank hasn’t issued me a threatning letter, they will not assist me in any way to help pay my mortage which has an over due balance. The pensions people are so discouraging. It’s MY money and I should be able to use it in this instance. Seems like my credit has to be ruined before they agree to help. Please Premier Cox, meet with the pension people and straighten this out.

    • jury says:

      @ somerset girl…you are not alone. I was told the shame crock of S#@t and I agreed its MY money and allowing me to take my 20% would not have hurt my pension in the future for me.

      Premier Cox needs to revisit that Financial Hardship policy.

      Keep your head up!!!!

  37. Soooo says:

    As they say too little too late…. but the real question is “Who falls into the retail sector”? We can all see grocery and clothing stores… but who else.. Car dealerships? gas stations? barber shops? There are a lot of service based industries that really need the benifit of this reduction..

    Every sector is hurting, some more than others so what happens, government helps one of the ones that has a cash flow..

    • Local Shopper says:

      Yes, and service based businesses are certainly finding it a lot harder. They can’t have a sale. I wonder what tax rates the doctors and other professionals pay. The thing is, stores selling items are hit by both duty and probably the same payroll tax, so it is double taxation. Their income is from the goods only.
      Though I agree with the previous posts that there are some salespeople you wouldn’t want to have to go near.. At the same time I wonder with those posters what area of business they work in, and are they unfailingly polite to their “Customers”…

  38. Bulla Bulla says:

    Cog, you are 3 years too late with this move! You cannot bring life support now when the patient is already dead! Where has all the money gone or should we ask DE DOCTA?

  39. .. says:

    I like how they slipped the fact that they gave money to a corporation owned by THEM right through the cracks…nobody has even noticed, we’re all too worried about the 10% increase on duty.

    How much money was given to THEIR corporation?!?!

    Pay attention people….

    • Soooo says:

      Yeah, WEDOC get the money to build their $650k + lowcost housing!! Lowcost my… @$$…

  40. John Does says:

    Emergency measures, how about you give back you expensive GP cars for 6 months. I have booked a holiday for me and the family which is 5 people. I would probably spend around 2k on stuff you cannot get in Bermuda, example of one of these items is kids shoes which actually are in stock and fit. So here is my math I worked out on how government will try to rip me off.

    Old Scheme New Scheme
    Shopping Est $2,000.00 $2,000.00
    Allowance 5 people $500.00 $100.00
    Total $1,500.00 $1,900.00
    Tax 25% 35%
    Duty Cost $375.00 $665.00

    Difference $290.00

    So my solution is that I will pay the 6.5 percent on clothes and ship all items I purchase overseas to Mail Boxes, or I will buy it online and ship it in. Either way government will not be getting lets money out of me. I just wish the penny would drop, and realize that in this current climate people will save whatever money they can for their family including overseas shopping.

    • Instant Migraine! says:

      OMGoodness!! Lets talk about those doggon GP cars! Most of them ARE NOT necessary! Now you’re talkin’!

      • Soooo says:

        Especially when the MP and his family are driving around with the AirCon on….. Hmmm.. wondering when the last time I turned the AirCon on?

    • your joking says:

      the point here really being the family suffers more..,….single person who has more money to burn pays the same amount of tax for the 2000 he/she spends………..

      • Sandgrownan says:

        Just send your spouse down the “ex-pat” scum line at the airport and travel on seperate tickets.

  41. Obvious Appeal For Votes says:

    It’s obvious she’s appealing to the retail sector for votes

  42. Jim Bean says:

    When BDA was around they proposed import duties being paid when the goods were sold. Nice to see her potentially taking up that idea.

  43. John says:

    Well thank you for the additional burden Ms. Cox!! My spouse was just made redundant, we have a daughter in University and are still paying a

    I don’t think these measures are going to achieve the intended goal of stopping people from buying overseas and employers from laying people off; and besides isn’t it a little late for this? This government has been flying by the seat of their pants for far too long and now it’s really beginning to show!

    • Tony Matterhorn says:

      If your wife was made redundant, you have a mortgage and have a daughter in school, I you shouldn’t be even thinking about going overseas to shop and bring back goods.

      Your priorities are skewed

  44. Dispatcher#48 says:

    I need a good Trip !!!!!!

    • Dawn de Toilet says:

      Dont take any money when you go…oh wait maybe you better take some incase you are charged duty on the dunkin donuts you didnt finish eatting on the plane.

      • not surprised says:

        @dawn de toilet, dont even joke about that because my sister that came to visit me, was charged 2.50 0n a box of a dozen dunkin donuts!!!! and when i called to complain they laughed and hung up on me!

  45. The Big Picture says:

    So the BIG PICTURE is no matter what the Government does now the harm has been done. Offshore Companies are leaving and those that might have considered Bermuda are heading elsewhere. Tourism will be there but diminished compared to years gone by things will improve a bit but no where compared to what it was. So lifestyle will be changing and not for the better.

  46. Sandgrownan says:

    She is out of her depth. The PLP is intellectually bankrupt, they simply do not know what to do. Utterly clueless.

    • GPS says:


      I totally agree!….PLP are lost!…there are so many other options to help the Bermuda economy!!!…To Numerous to mention here on Bernews.

      On the flip side…..Retailors, now that you finally have help from Government, STEP UP YOUR INVENTORY VARIETY…the main reason why we shop oversease is because there is absolutley no variety!!!!…..and what is here is too expensive!!!

      • Hudson says:

        I agree, but it’s a catch 22. If stock doesn’t move, new stock can’t be ordered. We need to support local retailers.

    • SS says:

      Thats the truth!!

  47. dreama says:

    I wana know, will Ms Cox have to pay duty when she leaves lala land and comes back to reality???

  48. bestisland says:

    now only if she made the payroll tax 0% or even 5% for IB, then maybe one could have seen her trying to keep IB here

  49. Rick Rock says:

    How come this wasn’t in the Budget? They lurch from one “idea of the day” to the next.

    I notice this comes after the trips to Paris, Miami, Toronto, London, Cape Canaveral.

  50. Myisha says:

    This is BS and abuse of power at its best. Is our economy down… yes. Are are retailers suffering, YUP! Is you raising duty going to deter me from shopping abroad… NOPE!

    It’s going to cost me a few extra dollars, but in the end, will probably STILL work out cheaper as retailers mark stuff up triple or sometimes more! Bottom line is, I don’t shop here because its wack! Point. Blank. Period. I’m not going to give up my variety and individuality to save a few bucks… not me… no way.

    Perhaps one of the reasons retails charge so much is because of the RIDIC rent prices! Honestly, I don’t know how they do it! Buy the time they pay their rent, I’m not sure how they pay staff and then take care of their own families. I’ve wanted to open my own boutique for years… but you won’t catch me squandering my little bit of life savings for a shop that going to close in less than a year because I couldn’t handle the over head.

    Also take into the consideration, that all trips aren’t just for shopping! Some people just need a break! Get off this island and catch new scenery! While out there of course I’m going to pick stuff up! Thats one of the highlights of getting away!

    Ugggghhhhhhh!! I could go on and on about this all day… I have so many point to make, but not enough time.

    End of the day… does this new “temp” law affect the people that set it… NOPE! They rolling in the dough and substantial wages deposited in their accounts every month. Does it effect the smaller people who are trying to support themselves AND enjoy what’s left over of their paycheck (after bills and savings)… YUP!

    So Thanks! I appreciate it!

    • Local Shopper says:

      And basic wages are much higher than they are for the equivalent job in USA.

  51. ICT says:

    Paula Cox is an economist first so her thought process is that of an economist and she knows that in order for an economy to survive you have to implement strategies that make the most of the resources available, hence “buy Bermuda”. Most economy’s are based on the simple principle of supply and demand but here in Bermuda there is no demand for what is supplied so we shop else where. If we don’t support our own economy our economy will fail regardless if the MP’s take a pay cut our economy can’t and won’t support itself.

    • Vix says:

      Paula Cox also kept her head in the sand under the Ewart Brown regime and just raised her pen and signed irregardless of what the Bermudian people want. The spending behaviour should have been nipped in the bud when Ewart was in power. No she let him spend and was awwarded several salaries when he was in power. Give back to the people? By Bermuda? PC kiss my Bermudian butt! You are not doing ______t for the Bermudian public but insighting them towards anger! You are a facist. You want to do something for Bermuda, retire! And also, plead with your party members to give up their dollars to better assist Bermuda. Since that was brought to the table we, Joe Public have not heard anymore!

    • What says:

      P. Cox is NOT an economist. She studied political science and then law.

  52. hahahaaa says:

    Does anyone hear circus music when they read this?

  53. lol says:

    Going away for a well deserved break. Talking one suit case and coming back with 3?or is 4? Whatever.

  54. Letariatpro says:

    If paula was an economist or an intellectual thinker at all she would understand that more people living here = more taxes = more government income = less debt = etc…

    Making it difficult for IB to operate here and get the people they need was an underlying issue, the poor economy and increased competition in other jurisdictions just tipped it over the edge.

    Ask your grocer if they notice when all the expats are gone, ask BELCO(wonder why your bill is so high?), ask the private schools if they notice…while the government is wondering, “durrr hey, where did all my payroll tax go??…Guess I will have to tax the little person some more…”

    We are paying for failed policy, failed vision and all around piss-poor management of our economy. If our government had been saving in the boom, instead of spending like a drunken sailor, they would have cash reserves now to stimulate the economy, rather than have to resort to raising taxes.

    Now they want to raise taxes and expect us to cheer for their fiscal prudence…wait till you see the next budget.

    Thanks Ms Cox, you rock!

    • joonya says:

      Yup. And all those fools that praised that idiot Burch the other day when he was “giving his 2 cents” for economic stimlation can now eat it. This is from his, and Dictator Brown’s doing.
      Your praise will now cost you an extra 10% at de errport, AND you know the retailers wont price adjust either.

      • Hudson says:

        Yup, but you know what, people will STILL vote PLP despite it all. Unbelievable – almost like a psych experiment.

    • PEPPER says:

      Letariatpro,,,wHere the did you come up with this name ? you said a mouth full,I hope people are paying attention……..I think Ms Cox sucks rather than rocks..

  55. The Messenger says:

    Thank God I got my UK passport a few years ago and have family there who were smart enough to leave the island long ago. Time for me to look at plane tickets…..again.

  56. just me says:

    Tsk Tsk, this is such a shame, First of all Mrs Cox knows she doe’s not shop Bermuda, And they the MP”s do not pay duty, for i have seen them come through the airport and go straight through customs, so she needs to start paying, all of them do.

    Now alot of folks shop overseas because Bermy simply doe’s not have items meant for everybody, I try to shop Bermuda, but they usually don’t have things i wear, they normally don’t always carry my size either, also my shoe size, i wear a ladies size 12, i can never find them, so i need to purchase overseas.

    I just think this is a crazy way of trying to make money that Government spent unnessary anyway, so they are making us pay, bull crap, just not right..

    Can we please hurry up and have a new election, i’m ready for a new Government..

    Vote OBA…..My new Government.

  57. Random says:


    You might as well be typing gibberish, nothing said on Bernews will change anything. Enjoy your weekends everybody…here’s a bit of good news:

  58. FLYawaydammt says:

    Its time for her to GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. All her parties spending and we the public have to suffer.

  59. When is the next election? says:

    How about the cabinet ministers take a pay cut or pay payroll tax or do both or not use a GP Car or pay for gas. No examples in Government willing to set the standard.

    How does any of the decisions made impact the Governmental Leaders?

    From where I am looking it only affects the people that voted you in.

    The next six months will be long for us. Thank you for increasing the burden of the everyday good willed samaritan that chooses to work hard and provide the best they can to get kicked in the end.

    • What says:

      Even if PLP did now it would mean nothing. We the public have raised it constantly, but have been slapped in the face each and every time. If it was sincere, then it would have been done 3 years ago.

  60. @Work says:

    35% duty if I bring something back on a plane, that’s a good idea. More countries should do that. And to think, people here complain about how little the cruise ship passengers spend..shame on those who think tourists should spend their money on the island instead of in their own country. All I can say is, the gov. decided to control who can and cannot buy houses in BDA. That right there took major dollars out of the country and continues to do so. Using financial blackmail probably won’t work.

  61. It’s all smoke & mirors, desperate panic stricken attempts to stem the blood flow from self inflicted “anti business” xenophobic economic polices that have now come back to bite the PLP’s collective behind.

    This latest stunt is simply a matter of govt picking the “low hanging fruit”in an attempt to raise cash…this govt is virtually bankrupt…they need quick access to funds, therefore they have decided to pick the pockets of everyday Bermudians while shrouding it under the guise of “protecting Bermudian jobs”. It’s all too little too late.

    All you “fans” of the Colonel’s frothy rantings and ravings… are things working out for ya???? If it wasn’t so tragic it would be somewhat comical.

    The PLP are about as useful as a football bat…….

  62. Free Thinker says:

    “Knee Jerk, Knee Jerk” Here we go again, when are they going to learn that protectionism doesn’t work. look, this thing needs to play itself out, trying to delay the inevitable, is just that, delaying the inevitable. The biggest cost to retailers are the exorbitant rent that they are paying, then you can add the duties and Belco bill. Not to mention the poor customer service and lack of variety.

    In this instance, we need to let the market forces make the corrections that’s needed. What will happen is, as more and more stores close, these high priced properties will become empty and stay empty for a while. Hopefully long enough for the greedy Land Lords to wise up and come down on their prices.

    The next thing will happen is, the sales reps will be out of work for so long, that when they do get a job, they will be more likely to show the courtesy they should be showing to their customers. Being out of work for an extended period of time will make them realize how important it is to be polite to customers because their jobs depends on it.

    Lets take some measures that will really work, like remove the duties altogether and instead go with a sales tax. Luxury items would be taxed at a high rate and basic food items, especially those that will increase quality of life, which will result in lower Health Care Cost in the future, should be anywhere from 0% to no more than 5%.

    Instead of seeing how best to learn from this, so we can move forward and not make the same mistakes again. We are playing poly-tricks (Plastic Tricks, which wont last) I remember the Colonel in is capacity as Environment Minister, wanting to put the brakes on plans coming out of the Planning Department. He also wanted to see expats go so house prices will come down. Remember the old adage, “be careful what you ask for, you just might get it” Well, we are getting that now but are we any better off.

    I agree that prices should come down and at the rate the world was going, it was just not sustainable. But we have to let the market play itself out and if we play our cards right, we can only come out of this stronger and smarter. But try and control what is a speeding locomotive, will only lead to disaster.

  63. your joking says:

    By the way….they are not only screwing us out of more money the PLP are screwing us out of jobs……..any reason a restaurant is allowed to bring in 4 Romanian waitresses in the last couple of weeks……are there no Bermudians able or wanting these positions….Or is it no Bermudian are willing to work for the owner with his trackrecord.

    • Delerious says:

      Yes, the 4 Romanian waitresses are working jobs Bermudians could and should have.

      One place on Front Street has a waitress that could hardly understand English. But dang, they are so freakin’ HOT! The egypt place has one gorgeous expat waitress. I’m sure she will be married to a Bermudian in the next six months just like the two girls that used to work down the road at the mexico place. See ya’ll at the registrar general. Need a witness? Now she has a Bermudian husband and a better job!

    • Franklin says:

      Service is sevitude

  64. Pitbull says:

    WELL!! They can do as they please….. Doesn’t deter me from shopping abroad at all. I’ll shop overseas even more so now. Why not shop where there is more variety and things are a lotttttt more cheaper :)

  65. Terry says:

    WOW!!!! The ex-pats got a thing gojng here……..Detz rite…….Nah go bek to BIAW…….Where’s Buddah……

  66. dEEP tHROAT says:

    Well said! .Let the market play out. All Mrs. Cog is doing is bloating the wound.
    This current economy will correct it self. Let lessons be learned . How does the old saying go for a rainy day. I just wished it went save for a rainy government.
    I’m curious to see what choices will be made during the next election cycle.
    BERmuda wake UP!!! PLease !

  67. Paula Cox's Orange Pippin says:

    Direct action I say, smuggle in loads if Ipads (the customs people are obsessed with ipads so everyone must want them). Sell them at vast profits, donate money to OBA. Sorted.

  68. Broke in the US says:

    If the Bermuda retailer actually had what people wanted the you could buy locally. But they don’t! And if you you ask them to order something, they either don’t or it takes for ever to get the item.

    • hi ya during says:

      I so agree i am a person who is “fuller figure” and boy is it REALLY hard to shop here. I have approach Gibbons Co about this and there response was we don’t have the floor space to carry such items. Also when you shop abroad you have a much better selection and the customer is always RIGHT! I have always bought overseas because of that reason. If i buy something today and don’t want it tomorrow I have the opportunity to bring it back with no questions asked and GET MY MONEY BACK. Also if you purchase something from a retailer abroad and it goes on sale within the month they will REFUND YOU the difference NO QUESTIONS ASKED!

      Like someone said before FREE BUS RIDES, FREE NURSERY CARE for who not me. I said this for a very long time, don’t do it for FREE rather charge the students/parents a minimal fee for the service. ie instead of a free ride on the bus charge them 50 cents or if you want to give them a free bus ride tell them they have to use the SCHOOL BUS not the public bus that other people use. If they so choose to ride the regular scheduled bus they pay! Nursery school fees instead of it being FREE charge them enough that it covers the minimal cost to run the operation atleast there is some money coming to cover that!

  69. Cool says:

    The common man now has to pay for all the BS im still not buying any pink elephants down town i just will buy what i need away mabe a lil less so whats the point???? Its my choice and life im not a russian!

  70. oh my god says:

    just made up my mind for me will vote OBA

  71. Triangle Drifter says:

    Wouldn’t it be nice if there was a way to track who voted for which party & to legslly make those who voted this pitiful excuse of a Government into power liable for the almost $2B wasted away.

    Why should the 47% of usd who voted for the other guys have to pay for these idiots ineptness & corruption?

    Howzit going for you 53% who voted PLP these days anyway? You like these new costs heaped on you?

  72. What is going on? says:

    Have been off Island for the last couple of weeks and have done a lot of shopping…….I just read that effective tomorrow it’s going to cost me a a lot more than I budgeted for. What on earth….. how can you just decide to raise tax just like that….. BRING ON AN ELECTION…. YOU’VE DEFINATELY LOST MY VOTE.

    • Truth says:

      There you go! Let’s hope others reached that same conclusion today.

  73. Cancer says:

    Ok all you guys talking all this stuff… I hope you all don’t go quiet on Monday when ms cogx (sorry) is gonna be on the Sherry Simmons show! Vote OBA!! CC premier in waiting!!

  74. John Does says:

    It’s quite obvious that this is an act out of desperation to generate quick revenue without adding to the never ending unemployment. The obvious waste of taxpayers money in the good days, and greed of politicians abusing their power is plain to see in most peoples eyes. My question is why UK MPs have been jailed for illegal finical crimes and yet here people get away with it. Is the Uk supposed to be monitoring us. All I can think is that they don’t want the fraud squad in Bermuda as it won’t be good for Bermudas international business if everyone knows we have a corrupt Goverment.

  75. EXPress says:

    Why just a payroll tax relief for the retail sector? How about some relief for the single person operated business, or how about relief for all of us!. After all we all are going to have to go through a long winter,

    How does the Premier who also happens to be the Minister of Finance Paula Cox expect the retail shops to stay open if the rest of us do not have any extra money to spend in these shops. I try to give local retailers a chance but when it comes to buying computer hardware……….The choice is not there (old technology being sold at top price)

    Santa will be bypassing my house this Christmas, Just as he did last year. Why spend a lot of money on gifts we do not need, when the slow months of the new year will bring “We do not need your services for now, take a few weeks off!”

  76. THE THRUTH says:

    I have never read such a crock of BS in my life. Premier Cox was just waiting for the opportunity to get more money from the public. She knows Dam well that people are still gonna shop over seas and pay the duty, do to, the lack of variety of certain products and the high prices of course. And of course no one is gonna complain. Well I want be voting for their sorry a– come the next election. That cog in the wheel is running us over now.

  77. Whatever says:

    Why don’t these moronic politicians seem to be able to wrap their “brains” around the fact that many people don’t shop in Bermuda that much because there is no choice and the customer service providers end up making people’s blood pressure skyrocket because of their lethargy and incompetence. Besides being presented with over-priced goods with HUGE mark-ups (I don’t care how much rent these business owners pay, 200% is too much) my health is affected by the morons I have to talk to in order to purchase my goods. We are too materialistic anyway – I’m just going to stop buying so much crap and then no one is going to get my little bit of money that I earn. Screw you PLP!!!

  78. THE HELL says:

    How can you try and force peolple to shop locally when all thats available is freekin expensive junk. I bet you that Paula Cox shops over seas. PLP HAVE TO GO!!

  79. shirlely Richardson says:

    Wow! what next, let’s see,A hurricane is comming who’s to blame,PLP
    The Euro is crashing, who’s fault is that? It’s the PLP
    I just heard that the US stock market fell about 10% this month,PLP did it again
    I’m really vexed,the price of my plane ticket is sky high,that PLP is ruining my shopping trip.How am I going to afford my ipod,flat screen,blackberry and my gucci bag, if I have to pay 35% more in customs duty?

    I know I’ll vote for the OBA/UBP,and manna will fall from heaven, Let’s see Craig Cannonier will demand that Exxon drop the price of gas.
    Dunkley, will give us all free milk, and butter, Bob Richards, will print some money and bail out wall street, and the Euro Zone. Grant Gibbons, will tell colonial insurance,to give everyone free insurance, Trevor Moniz will represent us in court when the banks try to evict us from our homes and Louise Jackson/Kathy Michelmore will get us admitted to Maui/St. Bredan’s when we realize,that (BERMUDA IS NOT ANOTHER WORLD,) Reading some of these comments it’s quite obvious many of you are not (PROUD TO BE BERMUDIAN.) I’ll wait for the haters response.

    • Shaking the Head says:

      You seem to have got carried away with all the “Free” given by this Government, which is now having to be paid for. There is no such thing as “Free” so don’t expect another Government to give you all those items on your wish list.

    • SML says:

      Poor you!

    • sandgrownan says:

      What we need is coherent strategy that looks at all factors of Bermuda’s economy. The PLP lack the wit to do this, what we get are knee jerk, poorly considered reactions that merely tinker around the edge.

      They are clueless, devoid of intellect, and a vacuum exists in the ideas pool.

      We need proactive measures now. We are not getting them.

      This mess was created by the PLP.

  80. Rob says:

    I saw a very different Paula Cox in front of the camera this evening, she seemed very nervous and preoccupied. Maybe in the next few months we will see her true colors come out.

  81. Curious George says:

    Okay guys. This is maddness. No notice. 10% increase from 25% on duty, one member of the household can claim, no payroll tax for the sector that probably needs it the least – what about the small businesses? What are Gorhams and Masters going to do now? Pass the savings on to the customer? Not likely. What a circus. Seems like intentional setup for failure.

  82. A says:

    How about cutting the Minister’s salaries, that would help !!!

  83. Shaking the Head says:

    While the tax change today is taking attention, the big picture is being ignored. In the last decade the world has changed, but Bermuda has been caught up with playing local politics and not paying attention. Quite simply, Bermuda has lost its reason for being the preferred location for International Business. The tax benefits have disappeared, the regulatory advantages have disappeared. IB does not need Bermuda, there are plenty of alternatives. However what is the singular important matter is that Bermuda needs IB. This is the same for Tourism. Tourism doesn’t need Bermuda, there are plenty of alternatives. Bermuda needs Tourism. This way of thinking needs to be implanted in everyone’s mind. Unfortunately the local politics have trumped both, and no one in the PLP has realised it. Band Aid fixes like today are meaningless. Bermuda needs business, not the other way round.

  84. soon leavin' says:

    This government is a disaster and a joke…

  85. just me says:

    Paula, your wrong, you have single Mothers and Fathers out there working hard as hell, and all they wanna do is buy things that thier kids need, i can’t go town and buy my son’s school clothes here, thier just to dog gone expensive, i can get everything he needs for school dirt cheap in the states and still save money, so get off your high horse and stop making the people who buss there asses for little pay, and then take it from them….Come people, we need a new Government ASAP…Vote OBA…..OMG, Can’t stand PLP,and to think i voted for you..ugggggg.

    • SML says:

      Well said!!! I’m there with you!

    • S Brown says:

      So you actually travel overseas just to buy your kids needs? Wouldnt it be cheaper to order online?

  86. it can b done says:

    I like most do not like these new chsnges. what is really amazing is all the people owning up to not declaring good and then we wonder why we are searched. because most are not honest. Please dint be fooled in thinking your going to go away and bring back goods and not be detected because they cant search everyone. That is a big myth. It can be done and I assume they will be instructed to do so for compliance. My fellow bermudians please dont lie as your christams goods will be taken from you. still enjoy your trip just ship it back.

  87. Derek Simons says:

    You know the said thing about this all is we Bermudians will complain about it but would not stand togeather and make something happen. Let’s just let Paula Cox just shove the rod up our backside.

  88. Give me a break says:

    For all the ones who support buying in Bermuda:

    Not everyone has the money to fly away – but they can still shop online without having to pay the price of a flight.

    Most people don’t get paid 200% more than their counterparts in the US or EU and that’s how much the goods are usually marked up.

    I’ve gotten computers, clothing, books etc. for a fraction of the price that they sell it for here without the b*tch attitude from the sales people. I do my research and try first to buy it here if I can get a better price – but that is rare.

    Also if a ‘fellow Bermudian’ or anybody else is doing a sh*t job, I don’t care if they loose their job because people aren’t using their goods or services . Some of them should have been fired along time ago because they are incompetent and lazy but they have been given chance after chance and someone else has probably been carrying their weight for years.

    BTW – I’d love to see how much duty these Ministers pay when they bring in goods from overseas. The amount of ppl that get through without paying duty because they know a customs officer at the Airport is almost hilarious.

  89. kiskadee says:

    The only good thing coming out of this perhaps is that the ordinary man in the street is realizing at long last that this Government is not out to help them and we need to get rid of them. They earn high salaries and dont have to worry where their next meal is coming from.We need to know if ,in fact, these Government ministers do not pay duty. That would really make me furious. Are the prices in the supermarkets going to be reduced?? I cant see it. They are all so greedy and we have to work so hard just to buy food. I wont be buying anything in the local stores as they are just too expensive. I read of one lady who bought a comforter in Target for $70 and the exact same thing here in a shop on Reid Street was $400.Lets get a new Government in . Look at the debt we are in after 13 years of the PLP.

  90. Concerned Bermudian (not the original) says:

    I cannot see how a 40% increase (yes it is 40% not 10%) is helping us. Paula, it is time to go. Punitive increases like this in these desperate times. Typical PLP. When are you thieves going to take a pay cut?

    One day soon the public is going to vote you and your party out on your a**.

    Bring on the election!!!!!!

  91. LaVerne Furbert says:

    87 comments and only about 3 people had the courage of their convictions. Wow!!!

    • not surprised says:

      and by this statement you mean agree with you? from where i sit and read, everyone on these comments has voiced and had ” the courage of their convictions” whether they agree of disagree…..hhhmmm. I disagree with it and it will not help Bermuda and yes it affects me! that is the courage of my convictions!

    • gestapo says:

      If by “courage of their convictions” you mean… “have posted their full name”, I for one won’t do it because of genuine fear of people like you. (and before you spout off with the chance to jump at a race card here… no I do not mean people like you in the same way Alex Scott said people like you, I mean people with your mentality) I firmly believe that anybody using their real name here who do not agree with you or your absolutely dictatorship style govt party, will be flagged and hassled even more at the airport, or in general on the island.
      Coming “home” to Bermuda is an extremely uncomfortable experience. I am never made to feel welcomed home, and am always hassled over duty on things that I “failed to declare” like a pack of gum, or used shoe polish that i bought in the phoenix store in bermuda, or perhaps even a souvenir cup that came with the drink i purchased abroad.. do i now have to show receipts for food consumed overseas as well? I’ve been asked to produce receipts for EVERYTHING imaginable. and i NEVER cheat on paying my duty. It’s not worth it to me to have it confiscated.
      It’s people like YOU who blindly follow this governments commands that are ruining Bermuda and accuse us who have an opinion and our own convictions of failing to stand up to them. I’m afraid you are the sheep in this instance.
      Perhaps if you are so concerned with bermuda’s economy, instead of telling everyone to follow the PLP and do what they say, you can start convincing your buddies over there to follow what they are saying themselves.. maybe start with pay cuts, maybe start with ditching their GP cars… how many are out there now? it’s well over 100 now…
      If people want everyone to Buy Bermuda… maybe any tax or duty reductions for retailers should require a mandatory price adjustment… I mean heck, now they’re getting a break in operating costs… so lets enforce a mandatory lowered price adjustment….and apply it to groceries as well….

      I see Bermudians struggling to get by (me included) whilst the PLP seem to just live the life of Riley. People’s party? ha! only if you’re one of the people in government

    • Vanz says:


    • EXPress says:

      Just keep rearranging the deck chairs………………….

      “This is a situation when someone tries to futilely reform the way things are done in a failing system.”

      “Rearranging the deck chairs on the titanic”

      A joke Stephen Colbert made on the 2006 White House Correspondents’ Dinner.
      Some people say changing the cabinet around is like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. That’s not true; this administration isn’t sinking. In fact, this administration is soaring; if anything, it’s like rearranging the deck chairs on the Hindenburg.

    • Franklin says:

      As long as “we” (mine’s I suppose 1/3 courageous… you’ll never get the other bits) aren’t making personal attacks, who cares?

      Great Minds Discuss Ideas; Average Minds Discuss Events; Small Minds Discuss People.

      Why are you so hung up on the people rather than the ideas?

      Why won’t you ever get the rest of my name? I’d rather not have my (Bermudian) wife harassed and people sent to her place of employment – sound familiar? A cetain Limey come to mind? YOU, LaVerne, are the specific reason that I choose to use a thinly disguised pen name. In fact, I used to post under my real name many years ago, until a certain incident…

    • Fed Up Bermudian says:

      Why so inflammatory?? And you’re surpised at people responding in kind to your goading? We all have the courage of our convictions, but not all of us are well-connected and confident that freedom of speech really does exist here in Bermuda. Honestly, it’s almost a laughable point you’re making. You’re the one inviting any ‘cyber bullying’- and if you really think this discourse at your provocation constitutes bullying, then that really demeans true victims of bullying, like the accounts in the media about young kids taking their lives because of it. We just have the audacity to disagree with you, we aren’t saying things like that which was said to those poor children to make them feel worthless. I can disagree with my child and never does he feel like I’m telling him he’s without value, and no one is doing that here, just disagreeing with your viewpoint. You talk about respect, what about that which you project? That’s where our Premier is streaks ahead of you, great lady that she is. She gives what she expects to get. Never have I seen her be disrespectful or even disdainful toward white people. Never have I seen her have to remind anyone to address her respectfully- simply put, she gets the response she models.

      Please put it into perspective and call it what it really is- a lively discussion where not everyone agrees with you. My momma taught me well- and among her finest lessons was to treat others, ALL others, how you expect to be treated yourself, and if you don’t have anything nice to say, it’s best to keep quiet. Listen more than you talk, and don’t ask a question to which you’d resent an honest answer.

      Wow indeed.

  92. LaVerne Furbert says:

    Bernews writes “228 Responses to “Change In Duty & Retailers Payroll Tax”

    Where are the other 141 comments?

    • bernews says:

      All 240+ comments are visible above, if they aren’t showing for anyone it would be a computer glitch on their end..all is fine on the site itself.

      • your joking says:

        if you remember correctly she did state the people of Bermuda broke her computer with all the emails she got…..

      • Shaking the Head says:

        Maybe LaVerne needs a new computer – I hope she buys it locally!

      • Rob says:

        I am sure you are quite aware Bernews that the people behind the Subject will always be in the firing line. LaVerene Furbet should know that better than anyone.

    • EXPress says:

      Your computer might be infected with the dreaded OBABDAUBP virus!

    • Rick Rock says:

      Perhaps you should have one of those famous plp recounts.

  93. soon leavin' says:

    laverne needs an assistant to help her count the number of responses…who would be so silly as to make that comment…oh,ya it’s a relative of Chris.

  94. Wow says:

    I really hope Premier Cox has someone reading all these comments.

  95. Time says:


    its time for you to step aside. please hand the reigns over to Kim Wilson or simply call the election so the OBA can be voted into Govt.

    when you relocate to Cameroon, please write an autobigraphy emhasising what you got wrong so that these young bucks in the PLP dont follow your model of ” hide and lead”

    why are you so weak and unable to reach our to forge alliances with all the people who can help you?

    by the way this 35% tax shows that you have run down our short term cashflows on these trips and extravaganzas

    please put a ban on all ministerial and ministry travel, if it is that critical! make the minister pay himself andnget reimbursed only if he can show the trip brough income to Bermuda.

  96. Noel Ashford says:

    One Question, why should the competent individuals of Bermuda pay for the INCOMPETENT PLP mistakes primarily delivered by previous administrations / ‘the cog’ / The ghost of premiers past? We wouldn’t be in an emergency state if the finance minister at the time had a tighter chastity belt on the public purse. IE if she was capable fo doing her job. You would be a fool to vote this party back in.

    To all those who disagreed that the PLP would one day ruin Bermuda. Here you are! The outside world as someone else stated is competitive and has passed us by while the PLP would have you focus only on Race, divide us as a people for their own gain and pillage the country in the process. It’s unlikely this damage will ever be repairable. Job well done PLP… Our once prosperous island will be just a memory that we tell the next generation.

    Good Job PLP, we should probably discuss your next pay raise!

    • sandgrownan says:

      That’s the rub isn’t it, we’re paying for their incompetence.

  97. Cogged says:

    time for Paula Cox &Co to leave the building.

    make laverne turn out the lights, even she would be a better MP than many of the spineless income seekers Paula has serving her every whim and fancy right now.

    Laverne for Ministry of Finance to curb spending I say!!!

    • NOPE. says:

      No way to Laverne! I would rather stay cogged!!! thats my opinion.

  98. S Brown says:

    How many people travel overseas for the sole purpose of shopping?
    From what I know, most people order goods online and use Zipx/Mailboxes to bring them in, this 10% increase does not apply.

    So basically this tax is punitive for people you fly overseas for the sole purpose of shopping… Wow to think in the harsh economic times people actually have that luxury. Then again, Louis Vutton sales are up on Front Street.

    Economic hardships in Bermuda?? lolol You wouldnt think so eh?

  99. Lower payroll tax is not the main issue for these retailers now is it?! From what I can recall they need relief from paying our high import duty especially on goods that eventually may not sell or have to be sold at a discounted price just to get rid of it.

    Not likely to help retailers a lot who may have small work forces and as such lower Payroll taxes but are being killed by a lack of sales and high duty rates and other overheads for example.

    Where’s the relief for business’s that are staff driven like all menial labour companies ?? A relief in Payroll Tax is needed as the percentage paid out in Payroll Tax is substantially higher where you are not selling goods but man hours. The more staff and as such equipment etc.. you have = higher overheads and payroll taxes.

    Progressive Labour Party ??? Don’t make me laugh !! There’s nothing Progressive about them just look at Bermuda 13 years on, they’ve been in long enough to see the imbalances and make changes to positively affect retail/business’s in general yet as is the case with people who are out of their depth they seem transfixed or Hypnotized and are incapable of changing anything that will positively change things (other than their own bank balances of course) much like a Rabbit Caught in a Cars Headlights.

  100. John Galt says:

    You know, I moved to Bermuda in 1998 just before the “historic” election. At last, a government by the people and for the people. At that time I was stunned at the beauty of the Island and the friendliness of the people. It has been extremely interesting to watch Ayn Rand’s famous book, Atlas Shrugged, come to life as illustrated by Bermuda’s descent from Utopia to anarchy and chaos, in little more than a decade. Interesting, but scary. May I suggest that the PLP is taking off the velvet gloves and starting to show the iron fists beneath it. I further suggest that anyone who believes that the “emergency directives” are temporary needs their heads examined. PLP has now graduated to using direct force to try to stay in power. Unfortunately, the only ones who can save Bermuda are Bermudians, and they have been manipulated mercilessly into believing that they are victims of the white power structure and so will probably continue to vote themselves into a financial abyss, believing that their “black” government really wants the best for them. In the end, all they’ll be saying is…”but, we didn’t mean it. This isn’t what we wanted”. By then, it will be too late. Pitiful!

  101. LaVerne Furbert says:

    Here’s a question for you all. What do Ewart Brown, Paula Cox, LaVerne Furbert (and other members of the PLP) and Barack Obama have in common? Answer: They’re constanly anonymously attacked by cyber bullies.

    • John Does says:

      If you don’t like the heat get out of the fire and let someone else have a go.

    • sandgrownan says:

      Well, the first three are idiots who think that they somehow have something in common with Barack Obama. They have nothing in common.

    • Soooo says:

      lol…Funniest thing I’ve heard all day Thanks LaVerne….

      But really if you don’t like critisim the get the … out of Politics!!!!!

    • soon leavin' says:

      lol,lol,lol your mind is totally baked to even put that thought on this blog…go and have some cool aid with Chris.Make sure you use a bib!

    • star man says:

      LISTEN to the People, Ms Furbert, LISTEN to the People!

    • Wow says:

      The thing you have in common is ‘you’re of color’. That’s about it.

      it’s not cyber bullying. It’s the people of Bermuda expressing their feelings.
      The Government really and truly does need to listen to us for a change. Please!

      • LaVerne Furbert says:

        Cyber-bullying is the use of the Internet and related technologies to harm other people, in a deliberate, repeated, and hostile manner.

        That’s what I see on this site day after day people using the internet to harm other people in a deliberate, repeated and hostile manner.

        • Beez Evans says:

          Sounds like a day in House of Assembly. :)

        • sandgrownan says:

          Without a hint of irony eh Laverne? You wrote the book on hostile. Go away and come back with an argument instead of attacking the messenger.

          You contribute nothing and add no value.

        • Shaking the Head says:

          Wow, that is bad. If this is the case why hasn’t a complaint been made to the Media Counsel that Bernews is carrying cyber bullying? Oddly enough has there been one complaint made about anything since the Media Counsel was set up?

        • Rob says:

          I wonder why so many people that write in to Bernews day after day, after day, are so upset, hostile, rude, harmful Why? what is the reason for so many people in this community to respond to the news in such a manner? what’s going on? If 10 more companies close their doors tomorrow and lay off 300 or even a 1000 staff then the Premier will just have to re-adjust again, the only thing that we the public can do at this time is talk to our local MP’s and Vote. All this anger and frustration on the internet should be the LAST RESORT!

    • Vanz says:

      Former UBP member 69, staunch PLP supporter 8.

      • sandgrownan says:

        You count better than your PLP colleagues out in Somset. Shouldn’t you be plagiarising someones work or something

    • Noel Ashford says:

      Lsverne, I can answer that question without fear and using my real name. Notably before you launch into me, you may recollect my father a white man – Michael Ashford helped you when you were younger and less prejudiced seemingly against the res of Bermudian society that doesnt look like you on the outside.

      You all cry foul and blame reace for you mistakes. If you want to be viewed as more than you are now, give up with being divisive and be responsible for your actions my friend. Us white people have to be, so why cant you be held responsible for yours? Why does it make people ‘racist’ to call out your mistakes? What are you implying that no black person has ever made a mistake.. its just white UBP supporters and members?! Thats your implication indirectly if you arent willing to be held responsible for the current state of affairs!

      All of the people you listed made grave mistakes for their economies. Paula allowed Dr Brown to write blank checks and now wants us to write our checks to fix that problem. Obama had great potential and I would definitely have voted in 2008 for him if i was an American, but instead of bringing America out of debt and focussing on jobs, mid recession he implemented programs that cost trillions. That mistake is now evident. The same people who put him in power arent happy and they have that right. Dr Brown – well where do i start on those mistakes… ? And you.. you dont belong in the hall of fame … sorry… interesting you feel you do though…. What did you do for us? You jsut spread your venom on society and hope it catches some more votes… You havent in any way helped society and you seemingly forget people who helped you like my family.. are they racists too ??? The same Vance etc that lashes out on me and others likely doesnt know that as you dont want to tell him you took help from a white man…

      If you want to help, try healing the island not dividing it… I am friends with Wayne and I tell you what, I am so happy (if the PLP wins that seat) that its him and not you. His heart is in the right place no matter what… I question your motives.

      Go ahead, take your best shot… i used my real name and my family has helped you… try and attack me… or your pitbull son… !?! Your type has to go and thankfully even your consituency knew that….. Even the PLP doesnt want what you bring so please before you put yourself in the ranks of Barrack and Dr Brown and Paula – DONT… You dont belong there.

      • LaVerne Furbert says:

        Mr. Ashford,
        If I am correct, you father, Michael Ashford and I attended Albert College in Canada around the same time. However to state that your father “helped me when I was much younger” is as far from the truth as one could get. Further I am surprised that your father (if I’ve got the correct person) would share with his son a transaction that took place when he was in charge of a trust when he was employed at a law firm. I need not call the name of the law firm. I did approach the trust(I can’t remember the name right now) when I was raising funds to purchase a handicap van for the family of a physically disabled young man. It was only after I made the approach did I realise that the person in charge of the trust, which, if my memory serves me correctly, was/is an organisation that assisted in such circumstances.

        For your information, I approached other organisations as well and I was able to raise enough funds to purchase the van and the family remain grateful for my efforts.

        By the way, can you cite where I mentioned race in any of my postings thus far?

        One thing is for certain, the polls that are published by the Royal Gazette are correct when they talk about which group of people are more likely to vote for the OBA/UBP.

        I am not surprised that you would refer to me by my first name, even though your father and I are approximately the same age. It reminds me of how my father was referred to by the children of a certain group of people. It just goes to prove that little has changed in Bermuda.

        I am now going to read something from the son/daughter of the bank employee who processed my mortgage.

        Very, very sad!!

        • Noel Ashford says:


          So you do remember the fact that a nameless foundation helped your cause? Impressive – I wonder where that charities cash came from? As for my father, I won’t comment on his behalf as I dont have that right to do so. I will relay your kind sentiments however and how much you appreciated the help. What i find sad is your generalized comments about white Bermuda… You forget clearly when white Bermuda helps you… Are you jaded or just a paid spokesperson for the old/staunch PLP? It makes me wonder to be honest as your comments lack intellectual depth.

          You may wish to try your usual twist on words but you cant fool anyone, especially not me and i grow tired of watching you comment so negatively about white Bermudians – you have been an agent of division far too long and its time for you and your fellow minded comrades to be retired / dishonorably discharged – thankfully your constituency did that to you this week, it encourages me to see that. Maybe the PLP does learn from their mistakes! I felt the need to set the record correct as you aren’t sincere enough of a person to do so seemingly.

          Take note how you just commented that because im white (while you didnt directly use the words but implied this) that I am more likely to vote for the UBP? What short of prejudice would make you say this… ? So, when they win, you trying to tell me that not one black person will assist in this win? Statistics dictate differently. Remember that when you cry foul at the nect election.

          I would like to note that your prejudice blinds you to much. I interviewed with the PLP to consider a switch myself after I left the PLP.Feel free to confirm this with Jamahl Simons and Dr Brown for two, before you say such unfounded and frankly stupid comments. I unlike you have an open mind in terms of my political beliefs. You may be interested to know that the above list of people you cited, yourself included are the reason I would never attach my name to the party. Until they clean house, I would never consider it. It came at a time of Dr Brown’s questionable behavior becoming public and them allowing your venom to be even more in the public eye.

          I look forward to the PLP learning the same lesson the now defunct UBP had to. Your day is coming Laverne. Notably, last time I checked, adults typically refer to one another by first names. Since when did you have such elevated manners anyways?… Intriguing.

          -Noel Ashford & Not afraid to state my name to you…

        • Noel Ashford says:

          I guess I wish to make it clear as you may not pick this up from my last post why I find you to be such an intriguing oxymoron… You feel no way to ask a white Bermudian to help you (notably thank you for the details of this which I was not privy to) but you then comment publically against how prejudiced we all are… and hope that we lack the moral fortitude to call you out on your lies! Is your mirror not functional or do you not know that prejudice by its very definition covers people of all races – inclusive of you in particular? I would be happy to personally buy you a new mirror. Do you feel that people whom go out of their way to help you are the enemy…?

          I would also note that as your son doesn’t reside in Bermuda, I would expect the registrar to remove his name a second time. I wouldnt waste time re-registering him…

          -Noel Ashford

          • LaVerne Furbert says:


            What I have learned from your posts thus far is as follow:

            1. Yo have no respect for your elders.

            2. You have no respect for authority.

            2. Your father has shared information with you which should have been private and confidential.

            3. You do not read critically, hence yourcommentregarding
            me asking “a white Bermudian to help me”.

            3. Your father has misinformed you, it was not about “helping me”, ut was about helping another Bermudian family.

            4. I made no mention of my son(s) where they live, etc. But I do understand, that like my sons, you are not residing in Bermuda presently.

            5. You are aware of the names on the list of voters.

            The only thing I get from your posts, is that people like you will stop at nothing.

            I could go further, but I’m tired right now.

            Enjoy your evening, wherever you are residing at present.

            By the way, it’s obvious that people like you are really getting nervous about the upcoming election. Have no fear, Mind Maps has predicted that your party will win under the leadership of Craig Cannonier.

            • Noel Ashford says:

              Laverne, I will reply as follows, and apologies if the numbering doesnt match up but you didn’t count correctly so it may seem confusing:

              1) What have you done to earn my respect? Why do you feel you deserve it. You don’t. As a “politician” you should earn it. Did your consituency not teach you this recently…? Besides that you insult white Bermuda frequently – indirect or otherwise. When you learn how to respect white Bermudians, I will consider respecting you.

              2) You are not my authority, I am sorry. What makes you feel this position of power exactly? You are a senator? I am sorry but thats not an authoritatize position. We aren’t in communist Russia Laverne and as a politician you should know that your open to criticism and if you can’t handle it you should not be in this position. Interesting to see how you view it though that you can insult a large segment of Bermuda and when we stand up for ourselves you can threaten us? I appreciate the insight as the rest of Bermuda will on how you view some of us. Intriguing you resort to threats. I must have broken some unspoken Laverne law i am unaware of…

              3) My father is a man of integrity and hence i never knew but i am thankful you divuldged it publically. He would never have told me and i wouldnt even know where to begin guessing. If only all our Senators had his integrity! I could name one at least that would benefit from it… Please cite to me where i stated i knew what or where the help was previous to your divuldging this…? He could have helped you cross the street for all i know. I didn’t know and am very thankful you said what it was so i can see he is such a good person he would even help you – or your friend via you… I will never forget this of you now i know what it was. I wish i could say I was capable of helping someone who calls me the enemy daily. I am proud of his character – he is a great man. You however offer hypocracy of at best and zero worth in my humble opinion to Bermuda. You take help from others and then generalize that all white Bermudians are rotten. How shallow of you. Think should think about this next time you say it behind closed doors or otherwise…

              4) Take it as you will. You rarely reply on the answers people want to hear. You chose your arguement and corner people like the bully you are evident by your actions tonight. You know what those are and I will keep that information to myself to maintain my own integrity. You ask people to say their real names and then you threaten them. You would have fit perfect into a communist government! Speak up and be persecuted… Isn’t that how it goes and what you evidently believe in?

              5) Thats great that you told me what it was as per above and I again cite how proud I am of my father for helping a worthy cause for one and for two someone who criticizes based on false generalizations daily. He is a bigger man than I. I hope I can one day do the same.

              6) No, your own son cites it publically on the blogs he polutes where he lives. Luckily those of us with intellect and fortitude know he isnt eligible to vote… Its the law that he isnt eligible. As for my own where abouts, I am temporarily abroad not permanently, last time I checked the Bermuda economy is falling apart and nearing insolvency.. I Wonder how that occurred…!?! Poor government maybe? It doesn’t seem like I will miss much while I am briefly away from Bermuda. I still maintain primary residency in Bermuda unlike your son did in the past election.

              7) While i understand that the PLP doesnt believe in transparency, the registrar is public information – go check it out :) Also, I was the chairman of 3 districts and had a right to that information either way, but thank you for your valued insight. I took great pride in my time in this position in removing the many voters the PLP laced in my districts or those that didnt otherwise belong there. If your arent sure of the law, I can advise you to someone on it.

              People like me.. wow, if i used that to you… i would be “a racist”… I should be better than you and assume you didnt mean white people. Notably your correct, My island is in trouble and I dont feel myself or any voter should stop until those at fault for it are removed. You my friend are part of this faulty administration that ruined the economy, and scared the businessed off and left nothing for the next generation of Bermudians. You stop at little to spread your venom, so dont be surprised theres those of us who would speak up to otherwise correct those falsities. I encourage more people to use their real names. This isnt communism, speak up and dont be afraid of bullies…

              Again you cited people like me… wow… you must be upset tonight… I wonder why.

              Laverne, where did i tell you I would Vote for OBA? I take note of your sarcasm on the source of the poll but laugh given your own similar comments on PLP polls run by people with questionable ties to the PLP… Are you assuming this because I am white and chastized yourself and others in the PLP? Remember I did consider joining but even had I done this, I would never sit back and watch and defend blatent questionable actions like you do. I would think outside the box, stop reading the PLP blackberry messages of what to say during meetings and have a mind of my own! I probably wouldnt have gone far then seemingly if you cant do the same and made Senator… You shouldn’t assume my vote nor should the OBA for that fact. I left the UBP as I lost faith in their ability to change, and its the same reason i can’t join the PLP. I have no faith in your ability to change right now. You are more of the same that destroyed Bermuda. The OBA would need to earn my vote if i even vote at all anyways. Besides in my district, my vote wont matter – the PLP has never won it….

              Have a pleasant evening, i am sure your own polls tell you to relax during the next election… you have nothing at all to fear I am sure… Bermudians are exptremely pleased at current with the low levels of unemployment and large budget surplus that careful PLP budgetting allowed for during a global financial crisis. You should ask for a pay raise for a job well done or just tax us more maybe to subsadize that!

              -Noel Ashford. A poster with a real name and not afraid to speak up for what I believe in.

            • soon leavin' says:

              This senator can’t count,spell or put a sentance together.Is she related to a Chris guy over at the bus terminal?

              • Noel Ashford says:

                I would like to educate Laverne on her job role as she seems very unclear on this… This is quoted from and Wikipedia jointly:

                The Senate serves as a road-block to constitutional changes, the constitution requires a 2/3 Super-Majority. Thus, in order for an amendment to pass, it needs the support of the Government and the Opposition/Appointees

                Of the three appointed by the Governor, the Senate elects one to serve as the President, and another to serve as the Deputy President.

                All 11 Senators are paid, but less than Members of Parliament. Despite its name as the Senate, and its description as the Upper House, it is a junior legislative forum.

                –> Please tell me in your job description where it insinuates that you are an “authority figure” over Bermudians? You are there to approve or disaprove legislative modifications only on behalf of your party and Bermuda; appointed by the governor. I was unaware, likely as no other senator before you has tried to make people “respect their authority” that Bermudians should be afraid of senators. This sounds like Germany or communism? Should i be afraid of my door being broken down? Did the Senate merge with the Police or Secret Police and not tell us? I will have to reach out to some of the more reputable senators such as Mr Dunkley as see what his take is on his Job Role and your disgraceful statements. You dont see him attacking people online like this. He earns respect and when people dont agree with him he politely steps out of the debate with his respect intact – he doesnt dictate it like a communist leader or more precisely like you do…

                It’s a very sad sad day indeed when a senator tells you to respect them “or else” – your insinuation by your actions towards me. I end up where I started, if you really wish to serve Bermuda, step down and do us all a favor. Let a more reputable PLP senator take your place. You do your party a disfavor Laverne. You want to know why your party struggles to attract white votes? You… Rolfee, Burch to name 3 reasons. You dont even try to attract white votes as you a) dont need them and b) dont care about them. You instead insult us and show us your clear prejudice and disdain – I speak not for the PLP as a whole, rather the three of you who trample on our rights daily. Luckily I am smart enough to recognize that you dont speak for all of the PLP nor do any of the other agents of disdain. This is why I was mature enough to walk in an try and learn what the PLP was about. Knowing their grass root principles personally, i know you arent a good fit for them. There are good people in your party, you just arent one of them. You wish to know why I refused to join your party and declined the opportunity to attach my name to it – I would sell my soul to sit by and support based on party politics alone yourself, burch or Rolfe as well as others… Luckily, I just feel sorry for you Laverne. You have a lot of hate in you for anyone with a view or appearance different than your own, wether you say it direct or otherwise. You aren’t bringing value add to the PLP or Bermuda.


            • Joe Bermuda says:

              Authority? Ah it’s clear to me now. Ms.Furbert, you are a handpicked Senator, not an authority figure. In fact, contrary to how many politicians conduct themselves, it is in fact you who works for the Bermudian public, not vice versa. So, if anything, the Bermudian public are the authority figure, not you or those WE VOTE IN ( and can VOTE OUT) of their position. Your position as a Senator is paid for from MY taxes. I suggest you take note of that, and reconsider your mentality that you are a figure of authority. At best, you’re a figure of responsibility, so kindly consider your position with some humility.

              • Noel Ashford says:

                Joe Bermuda, A great point. This is clear in how some the PLP treat us as to how they view us. We work for them in their heads. Had i stayed at the UBP, aiming for Jr Minister – a senator, would have been my next goal. Laverne talks at me as if I am unaware of her “position” and it’s roles – I know them likely better than she does. I would never in a million years threaten average Bermudians had i followed through on this, nor would I CALL THEIR FAMILIES as I cant formulate a solid online debate to defend my own actions or those of my parties when I am called out on these actions…

                This is senator “Bully” as far as I am concerned. She has no class and no place in the public eye. Her, Burch and Rolfe are poison to Bermuda’s future. Because they aren’t capable of thinking of people other than themselves, they will scare off the businesses and in turn leave no future for the next generation. The PLP isn’t comprised of all bad characters, but to mention a few, these are at the top in terms of bad apples needing to be removed from the political tree. This is typical PLP behavior though, when you cant defend your actions cry foul, throw the race card in the air and then point out the flying purple elephant to the left and hope people forget you had a point. This is not healthy politics. Bermuda deserves more…


                • Rob says:

                  Before the Primary elections, i had vision of PLP members standing in the house of assembly at the first session after the General Election. From left to right in the front row seats were; Minister LaVerne Furbert, Minister Col.David Burch, Minister Rolfe Commisiong, Minister Walton Brown, Minister Marc Bean, WOW! That would have definitely been the final nail in our coffin!

            • Canuck says:

              As a non-voting ex-pat, forgive me for sticking my nose in this exchange between Noel Ashford and Laverne Furbert.

              How can someone assume that one has no respect for their elders simply because they address another by first name rather than ‘Mr/Ms ‘. We are all adults, and in business/politics, we should all be treated equally…this is not a lack of respect for elders or authority. By the way Ms. Furbert, if you want to split hairs, being in government makes you a civil servant, meant to serve the people… who’s the more authoritative figure again?

              I could go on, but I too am tired….both of physical fatigue and of being annoyed at some of the childish nitpicking I’m seeing here.

              Oh…..and you may want to invest in a better spell checker for your browser. (Voila, my nitpick for the night. lol)

              • ABC says:

                Mr. Canuck,

                I beg to differ with you, just by the fact that you are an adult that does not give you the right to address another adult by their first name, it is only proper to do so when and if they invite you to.

                And you may call me ABC.

            • Wondering says:

              Bring it on Laverne, bring it on…

              Are you related to RC – everything you say sounds like an echo…

              Time to get your own thoughts and learn to speak about today’s concern’s in Bermuda…. then was then and now is most definitely now. Everyone, no matter color, race, religion, upbrining, neighborhood, love, like, hate, education, creed… everyone, unless you know something that we don’t… would you like to share??
              As sometimes, lose lips sink ships….

    • Rick Rock says:

      That is the only context in which you LaVerne have anything in common with Barak Obama. He got millions of votes. Not counting your own vote for yourself, you got 7. That’s how many of your loyal bredren want you to represent them.

    • Register Voter says:


      That is the problem. We are not cyber bullies, we are the people that vote to elect people like you who occupy space within our parties.

      Maybe you should look at/listen to what people are complaining about rather than categorizing us a bullies.

      You all get questioned because of the following:
      Ewart Brown was blasted for things going on within Government. (same with Paula)

      President Obama because he is black. (that’s what I believe because Bush got away with so much and everything fell on Obama.)

      You because you are quick to defend. That is where your title comes from “The Public Defender.”


    • LP says:

      Please Laverne, I am on a break at work, are you a government worker, get back to work ,

  102. John Does says:

    USPS 10.95 for a medium size box shipped anywhere in the US for $10.95. There is no weight restrictions, as the moto says if it fits it ships for one flat rate.

    Mailboxes $17.00 for 3IBs plus a small fee for full sur charge and insurance.

    I think duty on clothes is around 6.5 percent.

    All of above means savings even on the old duty scheme. The Goverment tried to force the cog forward, however now they will be forcing it to go backwards by trying to push around the Bermudian public.

  103. John Galt says:

    To answer Laverne’s question, “What do Ewart Brown, Paula Cox, LaVerne Furbert (and other members of the PLP) have in common? That’s easy! They are all living on the bloated corpse of Bermuda’s working poor. As for Obama, let America worry about him.

  104. What is going on? says:

    WOW…. It’s obvious from sll the negative comments…..this was definately the wrong move. When are our leaders and representatives going to take a little less and show a little compassion for the rest of us….. STICK IT TO THE LITTLE GUY WHILE WE CONTINUE TO LIVE THE GOOD LIFE.

    • Squingy says:

      I bet if Craig Cannonier or Bob Richards stated this yesterday he would have got positive comments for his insight.

      I recall sometime during the summer Craig Cannonier was stating a good idea to help retailers was to increase the duty.. He said it on Channel 9 news.

      I wonder what changed for his party to be against such measures?

      Another reason why I hate party politics and the people who support party politics…

      I am not complaining because i cannot even afford a vacation much less a trip just to shop.

      I guess most people are not feeling the economic burden as they say they are.

  105. Concerned Bermudian (not the original) says:

    Only PLP could raise something by 40% and say it is to help her already desperate people.

  106. Concerned Bermudian (not the original) says:

    Laverne: If the three people you mentioned didn’t constantly smash Bermuda up its back passage, we anonymous posters might have more respect for them.

    And you know very well that people who identify themselves get accused of racism if they disagree with the PLP. That has worked well for you in the past, but even your most ignorant of supporters is turning on you now – and its about time!

    Bring on the election, you people will be out on your backsides.

    Remember, a vote for PLP is a vote into financial slavery!!! Stick that where the sun don’t shine!!!

  107. Amazed says:

    How ridiculous. That’s the best you can do.

  108. PLP Member says:

    The PLP have failed.

    They have become a inward looking group which has lost any meaningful contact with its core constituency base, and internally a bandwaggon culture has developed where people do the bidding of the Incumbent Leadership without question.

    in every meeting people are told what to say via blackberry and you feel the invisible left hand directing their every word and input.

    its sad, we fought against the bogeyman and look what we got in return.

    time for the PLP to go into opposition and reflect.

    PLP Supporter for Life

  109. What on Earth? says:

    PLP needs to go – bye!

    All change from the Cog Express to Nowhere

  110. CPA 101 says:

    Liquidity Crisis = Immediately increase Govt Cashflows via Taxes

    Increase payroll tax

    Increase BMA licensing fees

    Increase import duties on food, petrol and essential items

    PLP is bankrupt of ideas simple there is no immediate decision on stimulating the economy or creating jobs NOW, just this plain vanilla socialist mentality.

    what a disaster and ironically they are so insular they take every approach with a genuine idea as a personal attack

  111. Terry says:

    I cannot believe some of the bullsh%t that women rights. No Senator in their right mind would speak like that elsewhere besides, Iraq, Iran, Syria North Korea.This type of behaviour has been a ‘constant’ and would not be tolerated elsewhere.

    Only in Bermuda and the aforementioned because it is used as a tool to promote more divide and bring back feelings of past wrong doings.

    Classic move and well orchastrated.

    The votes are on the PLP side. So if they win the next election I don’t want to hear a damn word from anyone. Some have already voted, with their feet.

    Who’s gonna vote to get the meat.

    Where’s the beef…………………………………

    Yah gutta have the grain first. No more bottle feeding.

  112. 32n64w says:

    So a sitting (apparently unelectable) PLP senator comes on a blog and in the face of adversity all she can (or chooses to) do is complain about the anonymity of the posters.

    Using Mrs. Furbert’s failed logic one shouldn’t be allowed to vote in private but instead must announce to the rest of the world their personal choices and opinions.

    It really is all about killing the messenger, especially when you’re utterly incapable of defending against the message. Typical PLP hypocrisy when they have no place to go and the flashlight of truth reveals nothing more than a scared, shallow, shriveled corpse of failure.

    • Terry says:

      Did your homework on that statement. Very well said.

      If only others get the logic in that.

      When I vote um verin ah mazk ain ah tinted wizor…………I bet cha…..

    • Rick Rock says:


    • Rockfish#1and#2 says:

      Your second paragraph is interesting indeed!
      Had that been in place in Hamilton Parish during the primaries,those 8 persons who voted for her could be placed in the stocks on St George Square until the General Election.

  113. whatajoke says:

    this will NOT encourage me to buy local and I WILL continue to shop overseas where I have CHOICE, VALUE and experience GREAT customer service.

    Very short sighted decision….

    • Curious George says:

      I will also continue to shop, perhaps even more so, overseas and mostly online where we have choice, value and when in person great customer service and assistance.

      Someone should take a hidden camera to a few of these retail establishments that just got tax relief and document the extinct customer service.

      Welcome to the Circus!

  114. LaVerne Furbert says:

    Cyber-bullying is the use of the Internet and related technologies to harm other people, in a deliberate, repeated, and hostile manner.

    • star man says:

      Nobody is cyber-bullying anyone here. If you are a politician, or in the public eye, you’re fair game for criticism, particularly if you are perceived as a controversial, corrupt, or racist politician or an outspoken & clueless PLP sycophant. Criticism is not cyber-bullying. Disagreeing with peoples’ views is not cyber-bullying. Debating issues is not cyber-bullying. Ridicule, mockery and scorn are not cyber-bullying either – IF you are a politician or in the public eye.

      • Rob says:

        Which is why at this present time you should not be in the firing line, unless you have personal ulterior motives.

    • star man says:

      If you can’t take the heat, get out of the kitchen.

    • soon leavin' says:

      Then don’t come on here and insight responses to your silly comments.

    • Jazzy says:

      With all due respect Senator Furbert, please, please, please stop posting in these blogs. I know you think you are standing up for your party and yourself, but all you are doing is adding fuel to the fire and showing yourself to be small minded, petty, vindictive and in the end you are actually harming the party reputation. I’d have thought Madam Premier would have spoken to you about this by now. Give up already!!

      PS – Jazzy actually is my name!

  115. martin says:

    is the premier earning the salary as premier as well as the salary for the other ministry she is in?

  116. navin johnson says:

    Sorry Martin but I cannot help myself ..the answer to your question is the premier earning her salary? the answer would be no…..

  117. joey says:

    really??? this sucks im on vacation and just hear about it. so when i return im hit with this new alloance.
    paula cox should have been blonde… couldnt she have made alloance that if one is aborad prior to 01 OCt would retain old allowance…
    im voting the other PLP next time Portugueses Labour party

  118. Don't make me laugh says:

    Laverne please do not compare yourself to Barack Obama, that’s a slap in his face. The more you talk the more I wonder what was slipped in Paula’s tea the day she assigned you as a senator.

  119. Peaches & Cream says:

    Time for an election!!!!

    • Curious George says:

      Yes! Agreed! And time to start having BS&R start fabricating those metal bars for your windows people were talking about a few years back. Can make some nice white ones to compliment the roof. The house would sure have a lot more fresh air inside that’s for sure. Start welding!

  120. Bad Girl turn Good says:

    Ok so I am about to open a service business which also sells retail. All of my fit out & furniture will come from overseas worth over $60,000, She must be friggn crazy if I am paying 35% to import my items. I would rather hav FAKE RECEIPTS. No it is not business like or HONEST but this crap calls for devine intervention. NEED I SAY MORE. Sorry the Premeir should NEVER have rights to funding legislation, have a round table discussion with the industries also before dramatic changes.

  121. @Work says:

    The Premier continued on to say that, “By restricting the duty free allowance to only one person per family as opposed to two or more, and increasing the duty rate from 25 percent to 35 percent, this will discourage personal spending abroad.”

    Boy, I’d hate to have to furnish a house. Wait, I do, good thing the Land License Act prevented me from buying locally.