Over 90 per cent of Longford homes to pay under €5 per week in property tax next year

No change to LPT returns could see €18m investment come county's way next year

Liam Cosgrove

Reporter:

Liam Cosgrove

Email:

liam.cosgrove@longfordleader.ie

Dundalk councillors give mixed views on potential property tax rise

Close to two thirds of homeowners in Longford will pay less than €2 a week on LPT returns next year

Longford homeowners will see no change to their property tax next year in a move which could see as much as €18m come back to the county to facilitate its ongoing regeneration drive.

Local politicians yesterday (Wednesday) voted unanimously to ensure the current rate remains the same into 2021.

The decision will see 65 per cent of homes pay just over €100 a year, or less than €2 a week with 94 per cent of dwellings valued in the €100,000 to €150,000 bracket incurring a charge of just over €250.

Head of Finance John McKeon told councillors at its monthly meeting those charges will see 65 per cent of homeowners in the lowest value bracket of under €100,000 pay under €2 a week.

The move to vary property tax rates at a local level, which has seen other counties replicate what has become known as the so-called 'Longford Model', could see close to €18m being ringfenced on local projects next year.

Up to 100 different applications for funding are either on schedule or expected to be made between now and the end of next year, added Mr McKeon.

Among those include a €14m investment in the development of Longford's Camlin Quarter, €16m for the advancement of the town's former Connolly Barracks alongside six figure funding streams coming via Just Transition, Town and Village Renewal Schemes and CLAR.

In approving the recommendation to ensure LPT rates stay the same for next year, Fine Gael group leader Cllr Colm Murray said to do otherwise would be akin to "holding a gun" towards the future development of Co Longford.

It was an assessment which was given further weight by Fianna Fáil opposite number Cllr Seamus Butler.

"The return on investment that this council has made per capita of the population has been incredible," he said.

He said the move could not have been possible without the "foresight and ambition" shown by the local authority's incumbent management team.

For more, see next week's Longford Leader.