Fianna Fáil is calling on the Government to commit to an urgent review of local authority rates with a view to introducing a much fairer and more reasonable system for local businesses.
The party will introduce a motion in the Dáil on Tuesday, 22 November 2011, calling for an immediate and substantial cut in commercial valuations at every local authority across the country.
Cavan-Monaghan TD Brendan Smith has said Fianna Fáil proposals would make a huge difference to local businesses that are currently struggling to cope with inflated costs.
“Thousands of businesses in Cavan, Monaghan and across the country are under serious pressure to meet their costs at the moment. For many, one of the largest financial burdens is rates charged by their local authority, under a system that is no longer fair or equitable,” said Deputy Smith.
“The valuation lists used for most commercial properties hardly resemble current property valuations. The result is that the rates charged by many local businesses at present are completely inflated. This system needs a complete overhaul without delay, if we are serious about supporting local businesses and allowing them to grow.
“Fianna Fáil is calling on the Government to look at other methods of valuation, such as self assessment. We believe there should be a complete valuation reduction at every local authority across the country. We also believe any new system should take into account each business’ ability to pay, and the fact that many businesses are seasonal and are closed for significant parts of the year.
“I am concerned by the extent to which this Government appears to be shrugging off this issue at a time when so many businesses in this region and across the country need as much support as possible from the State. It is crucial that we give small businesses as much breathing room as we can in order to secure their future and encourage growth and job creation. At the moment, many firms are stifled by inflated local authority rates. The Fianna Fáil proposal only asks for what is fair and seeks to modernise an outdated system that is full of anomalies.
“I am calling on the Government Deputies in Cavan-Monaghan and across the country to support this constructive and positive motion, in the interests of securing the future of our local economy.”