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Government legislates for failed banks but not for viable business - Peadar Tóibín TD

13 February, 2013

Peadar Tóibín TD, Sinn Féin spokesperson for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation today challenged the government to proceed with legislation to end upward only rent clauses and to save jobs.
Teachta Tóibín said:
“The Programme for Government commits to deal with the issue of legacy upward only rents clauses.
“Almost two years on the government has failed to enact this promise.
“Yesterday almost 300 jobs were lost in HMV. Another 600 are in jeopardy in B&Q. These are added to Black Tie, La Senza, Game, Pamela Scott, Atlantic Homecare, Korky’s Shoe shops.
“Today we have heard that two Republic clothes stores are under threat in Liffey Valley and Blanchardstown.
“These difficulties are replicated across countless small business and retailers who have been put to the wall by landlords and speculators.
“The government has hidden behind unseen and unpublished advice from the Attorney General. While other legal opinion contests that dealing with the issue can be resolved without a cost to the state.
“Last week the government pushed through the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation Bill which in its preamble recognises that, ‘the common good may require permanent or temporary interference with the rights, including property, of persons’.
“If failing banks are allowed to set aside the provisions of the constitution, surely it is good enough for viable retailers and small businesses to be afforded the same protections and to end these rent clauses.
“The damaging fact is the government as a landlord itself has refused to reduce of hundreds of upward only rents contracts.
“The government must reconsider its position before any further jobs are lost. It is time for the government to live up to its promises and either bring forward legislation, support the legislation tabled by myself or hold a referendum.

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