Seanad debates

Wednesday, 10 July 2019

Local Government Rates and Other Matters Bill 2018: Committee and Remaining Stages


10:30 am

Photo of John Paul PhelanJohn Paul Phelan (Carlow-Kilkenny, Fine Gael) | Oireachtas source

-----where it wants to see targeted development, the councillors will be able to say there will be a reduced rate in that part of the town because there might be a lot of dereliction on that street or in that quarter. That freedom is in the section.

On Senator Paddy Burke's point about linking it to something, the issue is that there is such a variation. Over 50% of the income of Dublin City Council is rates whereas it is 13% for some local authorities. I would like to see it set at inflation but that might not be practicable in every local authority, particularly ones with a very small commercial rates base, which is why we have not specified it.

I point out this is for use in extreme circumstances where councillors go off the reservation, so to speak, in terms of deviations from the ARV. It is not something I would envisage being used generally. To take in the point made by Senators Lawlor and Humphreys, that information is key and they are right, but some local authority members are better than others at looking for it. I would have no problem if a similar letter were to be sent to the members of the local authority as well, and no problem in requesting early access to information for councillors before the budgetary process gets into full swing.


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