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Tag Archives: Government

Hotels president wants costs lowered

THE high cost of doing business in Ireland is the single most pressing issue for Irish hotels and guesthouses according to an industry survey carried out by the Irish Hotels Federation (IHF). Federation president, Michael Vaughan has called for immediate and radical Government action to tackle public sector costs, including local authority rates, water charges and energy-related levies. He called for a clearly defined national competitiveness strategy for all business costs under the control of the Government. Speaking on the eve of the IHF’s 76th annual conference, he pointed out that the survey, which was carried out earlier this month, cites excessive local authority rates as the most critical issue facing hoteliers in terms cost competitiveness. The IHF stresses that this is stifling Irish tourism’s ability to compete more effectively for domestic and overseas tourists. “The hotels sector stabilised in 2013 largely as a result of the relentless work of hotels and guesthouses to slash costs where there was any level of …

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A marker against fuel fraud

THE Freight Transport Association of Ireland (FTA Ireland), has welcomed the announcement by the UK and Ireland governments that they are to introduce a marker that will help tackle fuel fraud. This has to be good news to help reduce fuel laundering,” the organisation general manager, Neil McDonnell said. The product will be used to mark rebated fuels, including the off-road diesel commonly known in the UK as ‘red diesel’, in a move that will boost both countries’ fight against illegal fuel laundering. The marker will help HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) and the Irish Revenue Commissioners tackle the criminal market in off-road diesel, marked with a red dye in the UK and green in Ireland, and also kerosene primarily used for heating oil. Neil McDonnell commented, “FTA welcomes any effort such as this to tackle fuel laundering. The costs of fuel laundering to the exchequer, to fair competition, to the environment are simply too high, and are not being …

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Marking the end of Ennis Town Council

THE abolition of Ennis Town Council is set to be marked with a civic event. Initial details of the planned event were unveiled at a meeting of the local authority which is set to be abolished this summer. At the meeting, Councillor Michael Guilfoyle stated that councillors, former councillors, staff and former staff should “receive recognition for their commitment and foresight in the development of the town.” He commented that “it’s sad to see the town council going, but unfortunately we have no control over that. The people did not get the opportunity to vote on this like they did with the senate.” Leonard Cleary, town clerk, told the meeting that it is intended that Ennis Town Council host an “appropriate event” to mark the abolition of Ennis Town Council. He explained, “In recognition of the service of current and past elected members, a roll of honour has been researched and compiled. This will be included as part of the …

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Consumers support motor industry swappage scheme

Consumer research has shown emphatic support for the Society of the Irish Motor Industry’s (SIMI) Budget submission scheme, Swappage, which proposes a reduction of €2,000 in VRT for any new car purchased in 2014 when a car aged 6 years or older is traded in. The research, conducted by Ignite Research, shows that 78% of people would be likely to purchase a new car if a new scheme was introduced to reduce the cost. The average discount that would be expected by consumers is €3,087. Alan Nolan, Director General of SIMI said; “There has been an extremely positive reaction since we proposed Swappage for this Budget. There is an overriding consensus that this works for everyone, the government, the industry and as this research shows, the consumer too. “The proposal would reduce the VRT by €2,000 on a new car with a trade-in of six years or older. However, the feedback we have had from manufacturers and dealers is that …

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Challenges facing farmers

THE Cathaoirleach of Limerick County Council has called on the Government to review how State and European grant aid for farmers is distributed in light of what he described as “unprecedented challenges faced by the West of Ireland farming community”. West Limerick farmer and Councillor John Sheahan said that farmers who owned land classified as Special Protection Areas (SPA) are at a disadvantage as the funding allocated through schemes such as CAP Pillar 2 and AEOS are “insufficient” to cover both the loss of revenue from not being able to farm the land or the cost of preserving and protecting the SPA.

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