Fianna Fáil and Green Party proposals on Local Property Tax would hit the revenue stream of Wexford County Council and deprive local communities of investment, a Fine Gael Minister of State has said.
Minister Michael D’Arcy said: “Fianna Fáil and the Green Party, along with the Social Democrats and the Labour Party want to introduce a new measure to keep local property tax revenues in the counties in which they are raised.
“Currently each local authority retains 80% of the LPT raised in their local authority area. The remaining 20% is paid into an equalisation fund, which is used to support local authorities that do not have a sufficient revenue base to meet their funding needs.
“However, under the so-called ‘Dublin Agreement’ between the four parties to control Dublin City Council, Fianna Fáil have committed ‘to retain and spend 100% of Local Property Tax collected in Dublin City on Dublin City Services.’
“This allows the more prosperous counties to further develop and could deprive Wexford Council investment.
“Projected figures for 2020 show that Wexford Council is set to receive €13.5 million in LPT revenue for 2020. This would include €3.7 million from the equalisation fund, providing badly needed investment in Wexford.
“The Government has placed huge emphasis on ensuring the economic recovery is felt across the country and that there is balanced regional development.
“We cannot allow Fianna Fáil and the Green Party to stop this progress. They also want to put a halt to the planned roll out of broadband nationwide and they are trying to scupper the Government’s ‘’Project Ireland 2040’ which gives the green light to necessary road improvement projects.
“We cannot allow their proposal to keep all the LPT monies raised in those counties that are better off, ensuring unbalanced development.
“In our Local Election manifesto we in Fine Gael proposed an annual national equalisation fund paid from the Exchequer to ensure that counties that have a lower LPT base are financially supported as is currently the case. We will continue to ensure no counties are disadvantaged.”