Home » News » Business » Ennis Forum seeks rates cut

Ennis Forum seeks rates cut

AGAINST the background of job losses in the small business sector, the Ennis Development Forum has called for a 7.5% reduction in business rates in the county capital for 2010.
The increase in rates, which was approved by Ennis Town Council last year, led to widespread dissatisfaction in the business community, culminating in a protest meeting attended by representatives of 250 local businesses at Waterpark House.
“Since last year, small businesses have had to significantly cut overheads in order to survive, unfortunately including effecting cuts in staff numbers,” explained forum chairman, Michael Leahy.
Last year’s decision to increase rates at a time when business was undergoing a severe downturn was a cause of huge disillusionment in the business community and was seen as a serious miscalculation, particularly given the efforts that small businesses have made to promote Ennis and to provide employment, according to Mr Leahy.
“While rates were a relatively small proportion of a business overhead during the Celtic Tiger years, they have now, after businesses have been forced to cut overheads across the board, become a very significant burden as businesses seek strategies to enable them to survive,” he said.
Ennis Development Forum is calling on the council to reverse the rates increase of last year and also to further reduce rates in line with the deflation that is now taking place in the consumer price index.
“A rates cut of 7.5%, which would be justified by these two factors, would send a real message to small businesses that the council support their efforts to remain in operation and would indicate a real understanding on the part of the council of the important role played by small businesses in securing the employment and social future of the town,” Mr Leahy stated.
The forum’s spokesman added that such a move would also be very much in line with Government thinking on the necessity to reduce costs and expenditure in order to enable the economy to prosper in the long term.
“In order to ensure the survival of its own rates base, the council should now dramatically reduce rates in order to secure the economic and social stability of Ennis into the future,” Mr Leahy concluded.

About News Editor

Check Also

Recalling a lost ’empire’in Ruan

THE introduction of large foreign multinational retail outlets has resulted in the demise of rural …