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Tag Archives: clare county council

Cut to property tax shelved on legal advice

Clare Fianna Fáil councillors are up in arms over the distribution of the Local Property Tax (LPT), following claims that €5.6 million will be used to “bail out” other “inefficient” local authorities. Councillors have criticised the transfer of over €2m from Clare County Council’s 2015 LPT allocation of €10.406m to the national equalisation fund, which, in turn, will be distributed to local authorities who don’t have a high yield from this tax. The council was urged by Councillor Cathal Crowe to consider taking a legal challenge against the proposed redistribution of another €3.597m, to self-fund local housing and roads services, at a meeting this week. Councillor Crowe felt it was important the council took a stand if the Government continue to implement its proposed “unfair distribution”, which he claimed penalises the council for being “the best in the class”, while other authorities had adopted a more “casual approach”. The political row over where the proceeds of the LPT will be …

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Council in talks to purchase Holy Island

CLARE County Council has confirmed it is at an advanced stage of negotiations to secure the purchase of Holy Island (Inis Cealtra) on Lough Derg. It is understood that a purchase price has been agreed between Clare County Council and the landowner and it is now at a stage where the council is seeking funding from Government to purchase the island. Ger Dollard, director of services with Clare County Council, confirmed that the acquisition of the island has been under consideration for a number of years and that an opportunity recently arose to bring the site into public ownership. “We are fully aware of the significance of this location and would be anxious to see it forming part of the local tourism product and be available to the wider public. We are conscious of the strong heritage, environmental and conservation considerations associated with the island and, for that reason, have commenced the preparation of terms of reference for a visitor …

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Council defers decision on 15% property tax cut

CLARE County Councillors have deferred a decision on a contentious proposed 15% cut on property tax for householders in the county until later this month, following legal advice. Fianna Fáil Councillors Tom McNamara and Richard Nagle proposed the council should take a decision to implement this cut at a meeting on Monday evening to give a much needed break to Clare people who are being crippled by austerity tax hikes. However, chief executive officer, Tom Coughlan informed members the authority had obtained legal advice that it couldn’t take a decision at the meeting. Councillor James Breen (Ind) asked Mr Coughlan if councillors decided at the meeting to vary the rate of property tax, would he implement this decision. Mr Coughlan replied he had a legal duty to implement any decision taken by councillors, once it was taken in accordance with the law. However, he stressed he couldn’t implement any decision taken at last Monday’s meeting because it wouldn’t meet legal …

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€150,000 to elect council

OVER €150,000 was spent on campaigning by the 58 candidates who contested the Clare County Council election last May. According to figures obtained by The Clare Champion, the 28 new county councillors spent a total of €87,434, while 30 candidates who did not secure election incurred expenses totalling €66,985, giving a total of €154,419. The newly-elected Mayor of Ennis, Johnny Flynn, topped the list with a figure of €5,204, of which €3,811 came from his own resources and €1,392 was spent by Clare Fine Gael. It included €1,946 on adverstising, €1,464 on election posters and €1,417 on other election promotional literature. He was closely followed by former Ennis Town Councillor, Frankie Neylon, who spent €5,200, which included €2,000 on advertising, €1,000 on publicity and other election material, €500 on transport and another €1,000 on his campaign workers. In reaction to the figures, Sixmilebridge-based Richard Cahill, who spent in the region of €1,000 on his Euro South campaign, has called for …

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Sunday deadline for non-principal residence charges

Owners of properties liable for Non-Principal Private Residence (NPPR) charges can freeze additional penalties that might otherwise come into effect on September 1 by contacting Clare County Council or the NPPR Burea immediately. The six month period during which further NPPR late penalties cease to accumulate in respect of non compliant properties is due to expire at midnight on this Sunday. “Clare County Council is aware that many more people want to settle their NPPR liabilities before the expiry of the deadline on August 31. Some people may need to clarify aspects of the liability and as a consequence significant numbers of people are making contact by telephone to Clare County Council offices. Due to the huge increase in the numbers calling local authority offices, it may be the case that not all callers will get through and we apologise for this inconvenience,” a spokesman said. Any person who cannot get through to the council offices by telephone can contact either …

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Ban animal circuses from public land plea

Clare county councillors have been asked to ban animal circuses from performing on public land. However, in a statement, the council said they do not issue permits to visiting circuses. In an open letter to the council, Mullagh resident Betty Fowler said councils in South Dublin, Monaghan, Wicklow, Waterford, Drogheda and Clonakilty have already banned animal circuses from performing locally. “Animals are being caged, transported and made to perform in unnatural ways for the fun and amusement of people. Animals are not on this planet for human entertainment. It distresses me to see circuses like this being given permission to tour this misery around Clare and Ireland,” her letter read. “I am calling on you, as our public representative, to put forward and vote to pass a motion to ban animal circuses on public land in Clare and I look forward to hearing back from you,” Ms Fowler wrote. Independent councillor Christy Curtin said councillors will consider Ms Fowler’s request. However, …

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Council making ‘steady progress’ on housing take-overs

Clare County Council has taken in charge 29 housing developments comprising hundreds of residential and other properties throughout the county since the beginning of 2013. The council has confirmed it  is making “steady progress” in addressing difficulties at 180 developments around Clare brought about through the collapse of many companies in the building sector. In 2013, a total of 14 developments were formally taken in charge by the local authority, while an additional 15 developments have been fully taking in charge during 2014. “Each taking in charge involves a complex process culminating in a public consultation and a resolution of the elected members,” said Gerard Dollard, director of services, Clare County Council. The council has made a comprehensive submission to the department on the issue and has secured funding under the Special Resolutions Fund for two developments at Aisling on the Shanaway Road, Ennis and Bruachlan Grianán on the Westbury development in South East Clare, according to Mr Dollard. Meanwhile, Mr. Dollard said the council also …

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One million ‘missing’ rubbish bags

ONE million black bags of household waste are unaccounted for in Clare every year, the Mayor of Ennis has revealed. Councillor Johnny Flynn was commenting on the latest Irish Business Against Litter (IBAL) survey released this week. For the first time, IBAL inspected the cleanliness of national connecting routes between towns, which were found to be typically more littered than the towns themselves. In respect of Ennis, An Taisce reported, “scattered litter consistently along the Galway road. No one area was worse than another. While the litter was not heavy, it was certainly noticeable”. “It is a valid criticism,” said Mayor Flynn. “There are one million black bags of household waste unaccounted for in Clare every year and there is a huge problem of fly-tipping and illegal dumping, especially in the areas surrounding the urban centres. There has been lot of dumping on the approach roads to towns and villages, in isolated areas and around beauty spots, like Ballyalla. Clare …

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