‘Rates rebate is tip of iceberg for firms’

Fintan McGill. Photo: Michelle Ghee. www.gphotos.ie
Attempts to placate cash starved business owners by bringing commercial rates in Longford town in line with the rest of the county has been given a cautious thumbs up.

Attempts to placate cash starved business owners by bringing commercial rates in Longford town in line with the rest of the county has been given a cautious thumbs up.

Local politicians at a budget meeting of Longford County Council last week agreed to a string of packages which will see rates correspond to the charges presently imposed on business premises countywide.

Longford Chamber of Commerce President Fintan McGill said while welcome, many obstacles still remain for local businesses.

“It is great news that there has been a three per cent rate reduction,” said Mr McGill.

“But there are many problems which have manifested themselves over the last eight years and there are businesses out there that simply are unable to pay their rates.”

In his other guise as a well known Longford auctioneer, Mr McGill said it was unfortunate the first question prospective tenants ask was not rental costs, but rather how much commercial rate charges were.

“They (council) need to sit down with businesses because what’s going on is not good enough for hard pressed ratepayers,” he said.