Commercial rates Bill provides opportunity for reform – Ó Broin and Quinlivan
Sinn Féin local government spokesperson Eoin Ó Broin TD and the party’s spokesperson on Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Maurice Quinlivan TD will host a discussion on commercial rates in Leinster House tomorrow at 11am. Speakers include Neill McDonnell from ISME, Marcella O'Reilly a retailer from Kildare and Paul Conway of Tower Jewellers, Clondalkin.
Speaking ahead of the meeting Deputy Ó Broin said:
“As a result of the commercial rates revaluations process, which is currently underway, many small businesses, just finding their feet after the recession, are being hit with rate increases of between 50 and 100%. For many traders outside the Dublin area this is the first time they will have gone through the daunting rates revaluations process.
“Minister Simon Coveney is due to publish legislation on commercial rates soon and Sinn Féin believe that it is essential that voices of small traders and local businesses are heard before any proposed changes are made.
“Any changes made to antiquated system currently in place must ensure two things. It must guarantee revenue security for local authorities that depend on commercial rates to provide vital local services and rate payers must be treated fairly.”
Deputy Quinlivan added:
“Commercial rates are undoubtedly the lifeblood of most local authorities in terms of funding. This must be protected. However if we are to encourage SMEs and smaller traders to take on more staff or to expand their premises in town centres we need to ensure that there is fairness in the rates revaluation process.
“Many of the State’s smaller towns have a lot of empty commercial units littering the high street. We need to encourage SMEs to establish a presence and create jobs in the local area traders who are facing substantial rates increases this year are unlikely to do so.”