Kerry County Councillors have voted to increase the base rate for the local property tax by 7.5% next year.
That’s a reduction when compared to last year’s rate, which increased the base rate by 10%.
Under legislation, councillors have the power annually to vary the base LPT rate for the following year by +/-15% or leave the rate unchanged.
A special meeting of Kerry County Council took place at John Mitchels GAA Complex this morning to decide on the rate.
Kerry County Council Chief Executive Moira Murrell asked councillors to retain last year’s rate, which was an increase of 10% of the base rate; she says she’s mindful not to increase the rate given what people have experienced this year.
She says COVID-19 will result in a drop of €10.6 million in local income for Kerry County Council; in addition the council will also have increased expenditure requirements next year which are estimated at €3 million.
Ms Murell says the retention would have a direct impact on housing services and maintenance, roads maintenance and on the Community Support Fund. It will also impact the council’s approach to beaches, library funding, public convenience as well as general upkeep and maintenance.
The council CEO told the meeting that the less money the council has, the less services and employment it’ll be able to provide.
Fianna Fáil councillor Michael O’Shea proposed an increase of 7.5%, which he says is a decrease from last year, while Sinn Féin Cllr Deirdre Ferris proposed the council revert to the base rate.
Independent councillor Sam Locke proposed the base rate be increased by 5%, but later withdrew this proposal as it appeared to be causing confusion as to whether it was an amendment or proposal and what order it should take in the vote.
Twenty councillors voted in favour of the 7.5% increase, while 13 voted against it.
Vote results on the proposal to increase the base rate by 7.5% for 2021:
Barry Tom, SF: Against
Beasley Robert, SF: Against
Cahill Michael, FF: Against
Connor-Scarteen Patrick, FG: For
Cronin Brendan, Ind: For
Farrelly Charlie, Ind: Against
Ferris Deirdre, SF: Against
Finucane Jim, FG: For
Fitzgerald Breandan, FF: For
Fitzgerald Fionnan, FF: Against
Fitzgerald Seamus Cosai, FG: For
Flynn John Francis, FF: For
Foley Cathal, SF: Against
Foley Michael, FG: For
Gleeson Michael, KIA: For
Grady Donal, Ind: For
Healy-Rae Jackie, Ind: Against
Healy-Rae Johnny, Ind: Against
Healy-Rae Maura, Ind: Against
Kelleher Niall, FF: For
Kennelly Mike, FG: For
Locke Sam, Ind: Against
McCarthy Dan, Ind: Against
Moloney Jimmy, FF: For
Moloney Marie, Lab: For
Moriarty Norma, FF: For
O’Brien Terry, Lab: For
O’Callaghan Niall, Ind: Against
O’Connell Bobby, FG: For
O’Shea Michael, FF: For
Sheehy Mikey, FF: For
Thornton Aoife, FG: For
Wall Johnnie, FF: For