Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Housing, Planning and Local Government Darragh O’Brien has said effective taxation tools are needed to incentivise proper development and the maximum use of land.

Fianna Fáil plans to reform and increase the Vacant Site Tax to 14% to ensure it tackles land hoarding and penalises speculation.

Deputy O’Brien said: “The Vacant Site levy introduced by the government is far too limited to genuinely drive on development and does not over underutilised lands. What we need to do is strengthen it by increasing the penalty on land hoarding to help stimulate development.

 “We have seen the housing legacy Fine Gael has left behind in terms of the  record number of people now homeless.  We want to get homeownership moving again in Ireland and this is one of the measures Fianna Fáil is proposing as part of our manifesto.

“I have seen issues of vacant properties in my own constituency and it is a problem in every community across Ireland. There are a number of vacant properties in Rush, Co Dublin which needs to be addressed and I hope the increase to this levy can help to fix the problem,” concluded Deputy O’Brien.