Mid-Longford area councillor Padraig Loughrey says Longford should reduce development charges in the town and county along similar lines to what Westmeath County Council recently implemented.
“Businesses are still struggling and trying to create employment and every effort should be made to assist them at this time. A reduction in development charges is a very sensible approach that can have considerable long term benefits. Our neighbours in Westmeath have already seized on this opportunity and reduced charges by 25%. In addition the town centres and main shopping streets will see a 33% reduction. This is a huge boost for business.”
Cllr Loughrey said that Longford must copy this model as current rates are strangling business and reducing choice for the consumer.
“As a council we need to highlight this and push for the changes, we need to be able to compete with other towns and regions and we must also be in a position to promote Longford as a place to do business and somewhere that is supportive of business.
“In the long term such a plan can bring much greater benefit and it is exactly that kind of stimulus that is within the gift of local authorities. Our reaction to this will send out a very clear message as to our priorities, our creativity and our desire to create jobs in the locality. I will be asking the council to consider proposals in this sphere as a matter of urgency.”