Mayor dismisses family's 'God owns the land' argument

Mayor dismisses family's 'God owns the land' argument March 14, 2017

Tasmania’s Meander Valley Mayor Craig Perkins, above, has made it clear that being a devout Christian does not exempt one from paying their council rates.
Perkins, according to this report, was reacting to the refusal of the Beerepoot family to pay rates on their home and and a honey-making business because they believe God owns their land.
A council report said:

They steadfastly reaffirmed their belief that the land was not theirs, but that of the Heavenly Father.

The most recent correspondence from the family cited in the report contrasted the council’s adherence to the “law of the land” with the owners belief that:

Our Heavenly Father is Sovereign and that He reigns today, thus we worship him alone so that his will is established on the Earth … you are asking us to bow down to a false god which is something we cannot do.

Fanny Beerepoot displays a sample of honey at the family business.
The report noted the council could pursue the unpaid rates through the Magistrates Court, but recommended the council resolve to sell the properties to recover the money.
The council claimed it was owed $9,332 (about £5,800) in unpaid rates on one property at Mole Creek, and two at Chudleigh, one of which is the Melita Honey Farm.
Perkins said there was no religious exemption from paying council rates.

Under law, people who are owning properties, the title owners are required to pay rates, under legislation, and people’s Christian religious beliefs make no difference.
If we exempted them on this occasion, everybody would start saying they have a religious belief and don’t have to pay rates. So it’s not fair on the rest of the ratepayers, either.

The properties’ owners confirmed to ABC News the council’s account of their comments, but declined to be interviewed.
Hat tip: BarrieJohn

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  • Paul

    Since the invention of gawd and gawds, I wonder how many people and how many times those people have asked gawd for help, or sought his ‘deliverance’ for or from something, and I also wonder how many times gawd has bothered to turn up.

  • barriejohn

    “Fanny Beerepoot” – wonderful isn’t it? I’ve got to ask (again): are these people bonkers because they’re religious, or religious because they’re bonkers?
    Well I sure hope God collects your garbage on time each week.
    Great comment!

  • barriejohn

    Here’s more about their business, where I assume that they just give away all that delicious honey, being as God provided it all in the first place:

  • Marcus

    So, the Tasmanian devil dodgers are tax dodgers too. Why am I not surprised?

  • 1859

    But what about the bees? These folk are making vast profits by exploiting unpaid workers. And if the land belongs to god, so do the bees, the honey, the money and the madness.

  • “If we exempted them on this occasion, everybody would start saying they have a religious belief and don’t have to pay rates.”
    Kind of like the tax-exemption laws regarding religion in the United States. Except, no, exactly like the tax-exemption laws regarding religion in the United States.
    Exactly like that. Hmmm.

  • Bill

    Oh … Go on…Bust them … Confiscate and sell their assets … Recover the debt plus interest … Recover all legal costs … Recover all administration costs … Charge them with non payment of taxes … Bang them up in an institution for the deluded … And make them pay for their keep whilst incarcerated. That should wipe them out. And then let them seek the support of their god to give them a new start. That should deter all other tax dodging pious hypocrites from dishonest behaviour.

  • Bill

    And why do people like this look so mindlessly, vacantly and happily simple. They look disturbingly abnormal. Makes my flesh creep.

  • Bill

    Caption competition.
    “Would you like to lick my honeypot?”

  • Angela_K

    God owns their land eh? So from whom did these barmpots buy the land or did they they steal it from the indigenous population as is the christian way?

  • Paul

    Tasmania has no ‘true’ indigenous population as they were wiped out completely by the settlers and the then Government and the church (no surprise there then) through ‘land clearances’.
    There are a lot who say they are but it’s likely they are not truly of the original population.
    From wiki
    “By 1833, Christian missionary George Augustus Robinson, sponsored by Lieutenant Governor George Arthur, had persuaded the approximately 200 surviving Aboriginal Tasmanians to surrender themselves with assurances that they would be protected, provided for and eventually have their lands returned to them. These ‘assurances’ were false, there is no suggestion that Robinson or Lieutenant-Governor Arthur intending anything else but exile to the Furneaux Islands and the assurances were given by Robinson in order to facilitate the removal of the Aboriginal people from mainland Tasmania.”

  • Prior

    Check out the prices of their god given goods here:-
    And at these prices I guess they make a fair bit of filthy lucre … if there are enough customers that is. I wonder if they give it all away as god would like. Or is god, in this case, helping those who help themselves (but don’t pay their way like everyone else does)

  • Michael Glass

    Hello, what happened to the text about rendering to Caesar what is Caesar’s? It’s found in Matthew 22:21. You would think that even the most devout Christian would have heard about that text.

  • barriejohn

    Prior: That’s OK as long as they “tithe”. God “prospers those who honour him”. It’s a fact.
    This clip might amuse some. We used to sing this when I was a nipper – but not at THIS age. No wonder they look embarrassed; probably all the kids of “believers”.

  • barriejohn

    Paul: Very interesting.
    When the Missionaries arrived, the Africans had the Land and the Missionaries had the Bible. They taught us how to pray with our eyes closed. When we opened them, they had the land and we had the Bible. (Attributed to various sources.)
    Did anyone else notice that the honeypot business is closed on Saturdays, but open on Sundays? I was wondering what sect these morons belong to. The level of Christian activity seems very high in Tasmania, and there are over a thousand Adventists, but here is some more encouraging news:

  • Club Secretary

    @Michael Glass says:
    Wed 15 Mar 2017 at 9:19 am
    I doubt it as they don’t seem to know of Matthew 6:6.

  • andym

    Fanny Beerepoot. It sounds like a character out of Viz,not least because it was made to be said with a Geordie accent. Try it.

  • Paul

    A line from Fawlty Towers springs to mind with her holding that-
    “Is that a piece of your brain?”.

  • John the Drunkard

    Aboriginal catastrophes to the side. Did these people pay for the land they are using? They must have at some point.
    I’m assuming that Australian law doesn’t give them the Synanon/Scientology bailout of declaring themselves to be a ‘church’ as soon as taxes are mentioned.

  • tonye

    I was so wrong, I’d always thought that fannybeerepoot was a STI!

  • RussellW

    I’m interested in what happens after the council sells the properties and recovers its costs and rates. Will the religiots accept the cash?
    There are some Tasmanians who claim descent from the Indigenous poulation and identify as ‘Aboriginal’. You can argue with them as to whether they exist or not.
    Wiki, schmiki.

  • Paul

    Yes I am aware they do and it’s good for them to do that – my info came from the book Fatal Shore, experience there and understanding the last real person was Truganini, rather than wiki.
    I can’t link my own book!

  • barriejohn

    Interestingly, Wikipedia has an article about The Fatal Shore.
    It’s available on Amazon etc.

  • RussellW

    Yes, I’ve read ‘The Fatal Shore’. We’re going OT, however I have to say that there’s been some nonsense written about the colonisation of Tasmania. First , the Tasmanians weren’t a separate ‘race’, whatever that means and there’s nothing unique about the genocidal colonial war against them., it was typical of European imperial expansion. Indigenous people also’disappeared’ from the Americas and the Caribbean.