Written answers

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Department of Environment, Community and Local Government

Local Authority Charges

9:00 pm

Photo of Alex WhiteAlex White (Dublin South, Labour)
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Question 436: To ask the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government his plans to provide application forms for the household charge to post offices for the benefit of those without the internet and access to a local authority office; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9203/12]

Photo of Phil HoganPhil Hogan (Minister, Department of Environment, Community and Local Government; Carlow-Kilkenny, Fine Gael)
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The Local Government (Household Charge) Act 2011 and the Local Government (Household Charge) Regulations 2012 provide the legislative basis for the household charge.

Declaration forms for the purposes of the household charge are available in local authority offices, libraries and from citizens information offices. In addition, persons may contact their local authority or the Local Government Management Agency on 1890-357357 or 01-2224000 and request the form which will be posted to them.

These options are in addition to the electronic options available through the household charge website. I am satisfied that there is a comprehensive range of options available for persons to access the declaration forms and this is being demonstrated by the large numbers of persons who have registered and paid the household charge to date.

Photo of Alex WhiteAlex White (Dublin South, Labour)
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Question 437: To ask the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government his plans to permit payment of the household charge at post offices for the benefit of those without the internet and access to a local authority office; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9204/12]

Photo of John LyonsJohn Lyons (Dublin North West, Labour)
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Question 455: To ask the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government if he will consider an instalment payment option for persons to pay the household charge in quarterly cash or cheque instalments through the post office; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9506/12]

Photo of Brendan  RyanBrendan Ryan (Dublin North, Labour)
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Question 478: To ask the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government the steps he has taken to make the household charge payable in local post offices; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9837/12]

Photo of Phil HoganPhil Hogan (Minister, Department of Environment, Community and Local Government; Carlow-Kilkenny, Fine Gael)
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I propose to take Questions Nos. 437, 455 and 478 together.

The Local Government (Household Charge) Act 2011 and the Local Government (Household Charge) Regulations 2012 provide the legislative basis for the household charge.

There is a range of options available for persons to pay the household charge. An online system www.householdcharge.ie is in place in the Local Government Management Agency (LGMA) to enable homeowners to pay the household charge by credit/debit card or in four instalments of €25 by direct debit. In addition, homeowners can make payment by cheque, postal order, credit/debit card or in four instalments of €25 by direct debit by completing the relevant payment details on the declaration form and posting it to Household Charge, PO Box 12168, Dublin 1. Instalment payments are available by direct debit only and persons opting to pay in this way must register their details by 1 March, 2012.

A bureau is in place in the LGMA to administer the charge on a shared service/agency basis for all local authorities. In addition, all county/city councils have been requested to have arrangements in place for persons to attend their principal offices to pay the household charge up to 31 March, 2012.

I am satisfied that there is a comprehensive suite of payment options available to persons with a liability to pay the household charge and this is being demonstrated by the large numbers of persons who have registered and paid the household charge to date.

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