The Property tax is to remain unchanged in Waterford City & County
The property tax remains unchanged for householders in Tramore as the Waterford City and County Council voted down a Sinn Fein proposal to reduce the tax by 15% at Monday night’s meeting.
Cllr Eamon Quinlan issued a statement on behalf of the eight Fianna Fail councillors who voted against a reduction:
“We the Fianna Fail councillors of Waterford City and County said they had three options: raise it, lower it by a maximum of 15% or keep it steady. Fine Gael and Labour councillors will keep to the thinking of their national parties and will back the introduction of the tax as introduced by former minister Phil Hogan. Sinn Fein and several Independents have called for a full 15% reduction.Unfortunately your council services now have to be funded in part by the property tax due to legislation passed by the current government. The councillors went on to say that a reduction would slash €1.4m from the budget assigned to projects like social housing at a time of housing crisis, meals and education services for children from financially struggling families, the elderly and general road, community maintenance at a time when there was a need for the council to do more not less”.
“There are many who could do with this but we would point out that an across the board reduction as desired by the above parties would give those with the greatest ability to pay a return five times higher than the average home owner. They would reap the biggest reward while critically undermining services directed exclusively at those most in need of our help in our communities. This is not Fianna Fail’s way.”
“As such, given our desire to not disproportionately undermine our most vulnerable for a return of 46 cent a week, we will not vote with Sinn Fein and several Independents. We in Fianna Fail believe this to be the prudent choice for the first year of this tax’s lifespan and will assess the possibility of a cut on a year on year basis going forward.”
Michael Walsh, CEO of Waterford City & County council highlighted the fact that such a reduction would lead to a drop of €1.4million over the coming year. The proposal for no variation was proposed by Damien Geoghan & seconded by John Pratt. Sinn Fein’s Declan Clune proposed a 15% reduction which was seconded by John Hearne. The proposal was defeated by 17 votes to 11.
Those For the Motion were: Sinn Fein: B. Brennan, D. Clune, P. Fitzgerald, J. Griffin, J. Hearne, S. Whelan; Independents: D. Daniels, B. Hannigan, J. Kelly, S. Rheinhardt, Mary Roche. (11).
Those Against were: Fianna Fail: E. Quinlan, J. Tobin (Mayor), MJ O’Ryan, Mary Butler, T. Cronin, J. O’Leary, J. Murphy. Fine Gael: J. Carey, J. Cummins, D. Doocey, D. Geoghegan, P. Nugent, Lola O’Sullivan, S. Power. J. Pratt (Labour) (17).
Abstention: J. Conway, Ind.
Apologies: L. Brazil FG and Cha O’Neill, Ind.