Today’s Editorial December 11: Another increase in cost of living

Just when you thought you had a handle on budgeting for your household, you get thrown a curve ball.

The cost of living in the Cayman Islands is out of control.

And now it’s gotten higher.

Government has raised the cost of banking, which means that every time you take money out of your bank account you’ll pay more.

The increase is tied to the hike in the price of postage stamps earlier this year and it hits every chequing and savings account.

Banks already charge fees for certain transactions.

Now there is an extra tax on top of those fees.

And who says we don’t pay taxes in the Cayman Islands?

On the surface 25-cents per debit transaction doesn’t seem like a lot.

And it’s not if you only withdraw money occasionally.

But those who pay their bills online will be hit every time they make a transaction.

Each time you write a cheque you’ll pay the fee you’ve been paying to use the service, plus the extra fee.

That means that when you buy groceries you’re not only paying more for them, but you’ll be paying the extra bank fee to feed your family.

When you use your debit card to buy expensive gasoline, you’ll pay more to the bank.

The banks didn’t ask for the fee.

It was put on them by Government, which will collect the extra fees for the country’s coffers.

Our leaders in Government keep telling us they are aware that the cost of living is too high here.

And now they’ve made it even costlier.

Something has to be done.

We honestly don’t know how pensioners and others on fixed incomes can afford to continue to live in the Cayman Islands.

Those who do live by household budgets will have to go back and re-jig them to account for the higher cost of using the money they work so hard to earn.

Government must get a control on how much it costs to live here.

If prices keep rising we won’t have to have a rollover policy. The cost of living is becoming so high that it makes the Cayman Islands an unattractive place to want to move to.

We’re already hearing rumblings from tourists through Letters to the Editor.

Many writers say they’re going to find somewhere else to spend their disposable incomes for holidays; that it just costs too much to come to Cayman.

We live in a beautiful paradise.

It will be unfortunate if prices continue to increase at this unchecked pace and drive away tourists and residents.

We implore Government to come up with some sort of solution.

Maybe some of the fat needs to be trimmed from Government.

Prices have to come down.

We’ve got to be able to afford to live in this place we call paradise.

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