Donegal councillor says rates reform necessary at national level

A Donegal councillor says the system of deciding on how much rates that businesses pay to local authorities needs to be examined at a national level.

Fine Gael Councillor Barry O’Neill made his comments in the aftermath of Sligo County Council’s decision at its annual budget meeting this week to start the process of moving toward having one rate throughout the entire county within the next eight years.

There had been diferent rates in the old Sligo borough council area and the county council area.

A similar situation had existed in Donegal where there were local urban or town councils, such as in Bundoran, Buncrana and Letterkenny

But Councillor O’Neill says more than equalisation of rates is neeeded:

Donegal County Council’s annual budget meeting is starting about now in Lifford . . . but the issue of rates harmonisation will not be one of the major issues.

Councillors there started the process two years ago.

But Cllr O Neill was surprised this week by some of what he heard about the rates in Sligo.