In his 25-page speech (you can download it here), he explained that the Territory's not collecting taxes for almost two years, because of a federal court-ordered revision of the system, has left finances in awful shape.
He said his government is “quite concerned’ about allegations of factual errors in those assessments on the island. “These can and will be corrected,” he pledged, while adding, “What cannot be done is to ignore the market reality that … land on St. John is dramatically more valuable than it is on either St. Thomas or St. Croix.”
As for those uncollected, unpaid taxes, deJongh said, “We cannot forgot the $60 or $70 million or more anticipated from property taxes year after year. We will resolve the lawsuit – the bills will become due for 2006, 2007 and 2008, and, regrettably at the worst of (economic) times, these taxes will be owed …"