A number of small businesses may have to close their doors as a consequence of revaluations that are resulting in prohibitive rate charges, a Fine Gael TD has said.
Fine Gael TD Michael Ring said that as revaluations of the outstanding local authorities draw to a close, many local businesses in Mayo say they will struggle to keep trading.
The National Revaluation Programme is an ongoing national programme to ensure that the rateable valuations of all commercial and industrial property in Ireland are reviewed and updated on a regular basis. It has been in place for a number of years, and to date, 23 local authorities have been revalued, with the remaining seven local authorities due to be revalued by the end of this year.
“The purpose of this programme is to bring more equity, uniformity, fairness and transparency to the local authority rating system, resulting in a more equitable distribution of commercial rates among ratepayers,” Deputy Ring said. “However, a number of local businesses in Mayo have discovered that their new property values are potentially going to force them to close their doors,” he added.
“One local business unit has seen their rates increase by 600%. That proprietor is now seriously considering if he can continue to operate.
“In another case, a business in South Mayo which has been opened for over 140 years will now have to close at the end of this year.
““The Minister reports that in 60% of cases, ratepayers have experienced a decrease as a result of the revaluation process. However, I would contend that a majority of these revaluations were conducted before our more recent global challenges, which have had a devastating effect on all businesses.
“Business owners are entitled to lodge an appeal in cases where they disagree with the revalulation figure. I am also hearing of cases where these appeals are not being dealt with within the specified timeframe, leaving businesses in limbo for longer.
“Budget 2024 announced a €250 million fund to help small businesses deal with rising costs and that is welcome. However, I would call on Minister O’Brien to conduct a thorough review of the revaluation process that is almost concluded, to ensure all appeals have been thoroughly investigated and that every business has been looked at fairly against the backdrop of external shocks and pressures.”