Local Authorities must be compensated for loss in revenue due to rates revaluation – Quinlivan & Ó Broin
Sinn Féin spokesperson on Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Maurice Quinlivan TD has received confirmation that Local Authorities adversely affected by last year’s Global Valuation for rates will not be compensated by Central Government for their losses next year.
Speaking in response, Deputy Quinlivan said:
“This is an absolute disgrace. Last year’s revaluation mainly benefited large and highly profitable companies such as Vodafone which earned €60 million in pre-tax profits in 2015.
“Last year, the Department of Environment made arrangements for compensation of a payment of €16.65m to be distributed to the affected local authorities to cover some of the losses. That only covered 72% of the adjustment but that was at least a cushion. This year the Minister has stated there will be no compensation.
“It is shocking to think that Councils will miss out on millions in revenue because of this decision by Minister Coveney and that the shortfall will be made up on the backs of ordinary people through increases to their rates, Local Property Tax hikes or cut-backs in the provision of Council services.
“The figures for the expected losses for Local Authorities are staggering, with my own Council in Limerick down €1.65 million in rates revenue as a result of this revaluation.
“Minister Coveney needs to immediately reverse this position and ensure that all Local Authorities adversely affected are compensated accordingly. Moreover it is time now to look at a more progressive rates system.”
Sinn Féin spokesperson on Local Government Eoin Ó Broin added:
“Today at the Housing, Planning and Local Government Committee meeting on the estimates I asked Minister Coveney whether there were any discussions between his Department and the Minister of Finance to repeat the 2016 payment of €16.65m to local authorities in 2017.
“Minister Coveney stated that no such discussions were taking place and he didn't anticipate any such conversations. This is deeply disappointing as it will mean a significant cut in Government funding for local authorities across the state next year.
“As Minister with responsibility for Local Government, Minister Coveney should be advocating for the maximum level of funding for Councils in the run up to budget 2017. This means not only advocating for a repeat of the 2016 payment of €16.65m but seeking an overall increase in the Local Government Fund to allow local authorities to deliver the full range of services that local communities require.”