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Taking property tax money at source is simply wrong – McDonald

21 February, 2013 - by Mary Lou McDonald TD


Sinn Féin Public Accounts Committee member Mary Lou McDonald TD has called on the government to repeal the property tax legislation noting that one in four households are experiencing mortgage distress and 65,000 local authority tenants are unable to meet the costs of their rent.

Deputy McDonald said:

“During this morning Public Accounts Committee meeting the Chairperson of the Revenue Commissioners confirmed that Revenue will have the power to take unpaid property tax at source from PAYE workers, social welfare payments, and bank accounts.

“Ms Feehily also confirmed property tax returns will be issued by in March of this year, returns must be submitted and returned in May and payment must be made in July.

“One in four households are experiencing mortgage distress and 65,000 local authority tenants are unable to meet the costs of their rent. The idea that the State would deepen these same peoples hardship by taking monies from their bank accounts, social welfare payments or pay is simply wrong.

“Government’s response to this reality is to merely defer, not exempt, property tax payments for people who have suffered a ‘significant and unexpected’ financial loss or expense. This of course will not even be applicable to families in very real distress.

“Labour and Fine Gael’s decision to plough ahead with taxing the family home is a scandal. Unemployment remains perilously high; the government has not introduced any meaningful measures to tackle mortgage distress and one third of our kids are living in deprivation.

“Government is clearly cosseted from the harsh realities facing citizens. For many the property tax will be a debt too far.” ENDS

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