Dear Minister Hogan,
We are now entering the time of year when Local Authorities throughout Ireland will be preparing their budget for 2014. With this in mind, I would like to state the importance of there being no increase in Local Authority charges to business.
My business is a member of the Chamber Network. We supported the introduction of the Local Property Tax; however, this was always on the condition that it would result in savings for the business community through reductions in Local Authority charges. The business community continue to shoulder a disproportionate financial burden for the provision of local services.
The revenue raised from the Local Property Tax must be used to broaden the tax base for Local Authorities, to complement the General Purpose Grant from the Local Government Fund.
It is essential that the cost of doing business is realistic and reflects Ireland’s current economic position. While businesses have achieved savings through rents and labour cost reductions, there has been no concurrent reduction in commercial or water rates. While I recognise that this is an important form of Local Government funding, it must not be at the expense of industry and employment in local areas.
In an effort to support the competitiveness of local enterprises and protect local jobs, I urge you to use your influence to ensure that the monies raised via the introduction of the local property tax be used for their intended purpose, to fund Local Authorities.