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Only three per cent have paid household charge

1 February, 2012 - by Brian Stanley TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on environment, community & local government Brian Stanley TD has today revealed that only three per cent have paid the Household Charge. Deputy Stanley called on the government to scrap the charge.

Speaking today in Leinster House, Deputy Stanley said:

“In response to a parliamentary question I put to Minister Hogan, it has been revealed that only three per cent of those liable for the charge have paid.
“Out of a total of 1.8 million households only 63,011 have registered while 51,401 of the 1.6 million households liable have paid the charge.
“The government’s plan was that funds generated from the household tax were to be channelled in to paying for local services. At this rate, councils across the state will be left in dire straits when it comes to funding their services.
“The government’s recent budget slashed the funding to local authorities by a massive 84%:a cut of €160 million. The household charge was imposed in an attempt to plug the gap. My party said at the time that it was unfair and unworkable and that many local authorities will be bankrupt because of this severe cut. The government must now scrap this tax and restore the local government fund.
“Sinn Féin will continue to campaign against this unjust charge.”

Full response below:

For WRITTEN answer on Tuesday, 31st January, 2012.
Ref No: 4866/12

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Mr. P. Hogan)

The Local Government (Household Charge) Act 2011 provides the legislative basis for the household charge. Under the Act, an owner of a residential property on the liability date of 1 January 2012 is liable to pay the household charge, unless otherwise exempted or entitled to claim a waiver. The household charge is on a self-assessment basis and it is a matter for an owner of a residential property on the liability date to determine if he/she has a liability and, if so, to declare that liability and pay the household charge.

The Local Government Management Agency (LGMA) is administering the household charge system on a shared service/agency basis for all county and city councils. I understand, from data provided by the LGMA, that as of 27 January, 2012, a total of 63,011 properties were registered for the charge, which has been paid in full in respect of 51,401 properties while 11,610 will be met by direct debit in four instalments. The LGMA does not have the sub national details of the registrations sought in the Question.

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