Very little income from derelict sites levy
24th June 2019
LEVIES on the owners of derelict and vacant sites are unlikely to generate much income for Offaly County Council, the June meeting of the local authority was told.
Speaking during a discussion on the council's preparations for its 2020 budget, Cllr Pippa Hackett, Green Party, remarked that there were a large number of such sites in Edenderry and Daingean and asked if there was any scope to raise revenue from them.
Tom Shanahan, director of service, told her it was very difficult to collect money from the levies.
Mr Shanahan said the council tried to engage with landowners but he also believed it was difficult to strike a balance between “the commercial realities” and bringing sites into use.
“We don't want to make it a disincentive to development in terms of those sites,” he said.
Anna Marie Delaney, council chief executive, said the council had a register of derelict sites but told the councillors: “You don't really gain any income from that unfortunately.”
Cllr John Clendennen, Fine Gael, said the council should be encouraging people who are “sitting on property” to make it available.
“It's something that I think we should certainly be trying to push in advance of the budget,” said the Kinnitty councillor.
Cllr Peter Ormond, Cathaoirleach, proposed that each of the council's Municipal Districts should discuss the issue and bring their local knowledge to bear on the matter.