The Derelict Site Levy will increase to 7% from the current rate of 3% on January 1st 2020, and a project team has been assembled within planning, housing and property units in Wexford County Council, to focus on derelict and vacant sites in Co. Wexford with a view to bringing back homes into housing stock.
While all five municipal districts are under scrutiny, Senior Executive Officer in Planning at Wexford County Council, Tom Banville, briefed members on the derelict site situation in Enniscorthy at last Monday’s monthly meeting of Enniscorthy Municipal District Council.
The Levy has already been applied to the high-profile property known as the former Murphy-Flood’s Hotel in Market Square, and the Kickham house on the junction of Irish Street and Barrack Street is currently with the Property Unit for CPO (Compulsory Purchase Order).
A former pub and residence at Templeshannon Quay are under consideration for CPO, a house at Cherryorchard is potential for social housing and a property on Island Road is also under consideration for social housing. A total of 13 properties are currently on the Derelict Site Register in Enniscorthy District.
To date, €32,210 (28%) in levies have been paid and €89,950 (72%) remains unpaid. The project seeks to use internal measures such as the Buy and Renew Scheme and owner incentive schemes such as Repair and Lease to encourage return to housing from derelict properties. The project team will meet on a monthly basis to review the derelict site register, the vacant site register and use local knowledge to target several vacant sites for return to the housing stock.
The Derelict Sites Act defines a derelict site as any land that ‘detracts, or is likely to detract, to a material degree from the amenity, character or appearance of land in the neighbourhood of the land in question because of structures which are in a ruinous, derelict or dangerous condition; neglected, unsightly or objectionable condition of the land or structures on it, or the presence of waste, deposit or collection of litter, rubbish, debris or waste’.