Ongoing Property Tax Fiasco

Friday’s Irish Times carried an interesting piece on Councils being given the opportunity to increase or decrease the property tax.

This is yet another example of the property tax turning into a fiasco. It stated that Councils have until the 30th September to decide whether they want to cut or increase the property tax. They are being asked this despite not knowing how much of the tax they’ll be able to retain.

Fine Gael and Labour need to take full responsibility here and admit they have made a mess of this. Both Government parties have imposed this tax burden on citizens and despite promising that 80% of the tax would be retained by the Local Authority where it is being collected this did not happen in 2014.

While Government has stated that the bulk of the property tax will remain with the respective Local Authority from 2015 full details are not yet available. How can any Councillor make a decision on property tax without knowing how much their Council will retain?

The Government needs to provide clarity on this immediately.

  • Will Local Authorities retain 80% of the property tax collected?
  • When will this occur?

In my view a decision on reducing or increasing the property tax should wait until the new Councils are elected. People are rightly cynical of politicians and political party promises. New Councillors will be in place at the end of May. To be fair to them and to taxpayers the Government should spell out exactly how the property tax will be rolled out for Local Authorities.

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