Thursday, 9 July 2009

Rain Tax? Give Me Strength

Akela Thunderdragon has been highlighting a blight to Scouts this week. Rain tax, I kid ye not.

In the past, organisations like Scout Groups and places of worship have not been charged for the surface water which runs into sewers.

Groups have reported an increase in water costs of between £60 and £600 a year. This represents between 1% and 25% of their overall budgets.

If this blog was Nanny Knows Best, the headline would undoubtedly be "Nanny Bans Rain". However, what is equally disturbing is that, although John Bercow has since rescinded the order from his underlings, a proposed protest by scouts was banned by the officials at the House of Commons. As Thunderdragon points out.

Cub Scouts, 8-10 year olds, have been banned from protesting in the House of Commons - because they aren’t old enough to vote. The Cubs (and the rest of the Scout Movement) want to protest against the rain tax which threatens to severely curtail the activities of many groups as it cripples them financially.

Which annoys me is the fact that MPs are always saying how they want to listen to the “yoofs” - but whenever they have the chance, they never do so.

Of course they don't. We have a parliament filled with chancers who look no further than their own self-fulfillment. Cub scouts won't be of interest to them for another two or three elections when they can vote, so why bother, eh? Allowing kids to expose ridiculous regulations is a lose-lose for the spinmeisters currently charged with looking after our nation.

Dissenting voices are frowned upon in the modern political Westmonster bubble (see not-so-public consultations).

I'm not fully au fait with the 'Rain Tax', but do you reckon it could have something to do with the need to tackle climate change by any chance? All that rain running amok, eh? Going to where it has always gone. It should be used more wisely and the water companies, with their righteous green agenda, are best placed to charge us heavily save our future.

I could be wrong, but there is a rancid whiff of profiteering, on the back of environmentalism, in this story. Environmentalism is a great excuse for just about anything nowadays. Just look at Australia for another example.

Australia town bans bottled water

A rural town in Australia has voted overwhelmingly to ban the sale of bottled water over concerns about its environmental impact.

Err ... no, they didn't. They banned it because they are NIMBYs.

Campaigner John Dee said local opinion had been incensed when a drinks company announced plans to tap an underground reservoir in the town.

Then they all got all 'Save Gaia' on the company's ass.

It doesn't matter if the rain drains away forever, or if it is recycled. The result is the same. Someone will find a way of using climate change (or any other scare really) for their own selfish reasons.

It's the way of the world now, unfortunately.


banned said...

Like the old song says " I'd like to help you son, but you're too young to vote ".
To be fair, the Houses Of Parliament are hardly a safe environment for a Cub Pack, filled to the rafters with fiddlers; I doubt if many of its members would pass the CRB check with flying colours.

Someone in the Water Industry told me that the rain tax does not apply to the total ground area or roof runoff, rather it is on hardened surfaces ( car park ) that don't allow soak-away and thus require drainage ( it's still a cheap scam though ).

Mark Wadsworth said...

Somebody has to maintain the sewers and somebody has to pay them to do it. If that's what the charge for concreting over a car park is, then that's what it is. If you don't like it, dig up the concrete and put down something permeable.

I don't see why Scouts or churches should be exempt while everybody else pays it. If you think that these people should be entitled to discounts on drainage, why shouldn't they also have discounts on everything else, like food, for example. So if they come into your shop waving their "Scouts discount" voucher, you have to sell them their food for half price?

Dick Puddlecote said...

Can't argue with you, MW. My point wasn't so much that, as the huge cost involved and for why?

Oddly enough, part of the prof qual I am studying for touches on drainage for hardstanding areas, all designed to 'save the envyment', and all of it comes directly from EU directives.

Like I say, can't say I'm au fait with the reason that the water companies have to charge so much to scouts, just that it appears to be more incredible cost linked to hysterical environ-mentalism.