Offaly property tax hike options put to councillors
18th September 2018
A FIFTEEN per cent hike in the local property tax would bring in €739,000 extra to Offaly County Council, councillors have been told.
Councillors must decide next week if they are going to change the property tax on private houses and as happens every year, council management has laid out options for increases.
A 15 per cent increase, councillors were told, would amount to 65 cents per week on homeowners, an amount which was described as “not significant”.
It would result in extra income of €739,000 for the local authority at a time when its discretionary expenditure for 2019 is very small.
If councillors decided to increase the local property tax by five per cent it would yield a total of €246,464 for the County Council.
Members were told that most houses – 77 per cent – in Offaly are in the band valued at less than €150,000.
They incur an annual tax of €225, which works out at €4.33 per week and would cost 65 cent more if it is increased by 15 per cent.
The largest single proportion of houses in Offaly, 41 per cent, are in the lowest local property tax band, dwellings valued at up to €100,000.
Their owners are paying €90 per annum and a 15 per cent increase would cost 26 cent extra each week.
A total of 36 per cent of Offaly houses are valued between €100,001 and €150,000 and another 18 per cent are in the next band, worth up to €200,000, and pay €315 in tax each year.
Only five per cent of houses in the county are valued at over €200,000 for local property tax purposes.
Offaly County Council expects to spend €56.2 million next year and nearly €25.7 million of that will be on payroll costs.
The budget adopted for 2018 was €55.94 million and €24.97 million was for payroll.
Commercial rates income for this year is estimated at €17 million and will be almost the same in 2019.
The local property tax brings in €3.9 million, there are grants and subsidies of about €18.6 million and other income comes to over €16 million.
While councils only automatically retain 80 per cent of the property tax raised in their own county, they are entitled to 100 per cent of any income gained as a result of increasing the charge.