So it`s high time I explained the meaning of above image, which has been on my Facebook page for some months. I have regrettably been obliged to close my driving school, since I am unable to renew my instructor`s licence which came up for annual renewal in December 2014.
The reason for the authorities` refusal to renew my licence is not that I have committed some kind of offence. I haven`t been accused of cheating anybody or groping any of my customers or any other kind of impropriety. No, it is simply because I have two jobs.
Apparently the Government`s master plan for recovery from the economic collapse, partly at least, relies on me only having one job. I suppose I should be flattered!
Yes, there is a law in place which states that a driving instructor can only have a second job if he or she earns less from it than from his driving instructing.I have been instructing for 25 years and for the last 15 of those years I have also worked in the hotel industry. Because I was not brought up in Cyprus, I do not have a wide circle of contacts amongst local people. My customers have nearly all been non-Cypriots, foreigners who prefer an instructor with English as a first language. For that reason I have found it impossible to make a living doing just the one job. My earnings from my salaried job have always exceeded my earnings from my driving instructing, but it never seemed to be an issue. Every year my licence was renewed without comment. It seems very strange that the Government would choose these times of economic hardship, to suddenly remember and enforce this law.
I would have thought that the social insurance contributions I have been paying plus the VAT I have been collecting on behalf of the Government (I wasn`t even obliged to collect VAT as my earnings did not reach the minimum threshold!) were in some small way helping to boost the economy but obviously I was wrong. I am sure The Government has greater intellects than mine advising it on such matters.
I have been hanging on these last few months, hoping there would be a change of heart, but to no avail. I have had no response to a letter I wrote to the Minister in charge. It therefore seems pointless to keep paying out for rental of an office and other expenses, when there is no income coming in. So this is the end of the road for Anthony`s Driving School.
I would like to say thank you to all the people I have taught to drive over the last 25 years and sorry to those new customers that I am not able to take on.
I will probably leave this site and my facebook page live. So if the Cyprus economy makes a dramatic recovery in the next few months and years, you can stop by and thank me!