Fine Gael Meath East TD, Regina Doherty, has today (Thursday) said that a change to the law on rates will provide a welcome boost to local businesses in Meath. Under legislation put forward by Deputy Doherty’s colleague, Waterford TD Paudie Coffey, businesses will no longer be forced to pay rates arrears from the previous tenant when they take on new premises.
The legislation has been accepted by the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government, Phil Hogan TD, and is being included in the Local Government Reform Bill 2013.
“This is a very positive and proactive measure, which I know businesses in Meath have been seeking for some time. Under the old legislation, which dates back to 1838, tenants who vacated a property with rates due are not be liable and instead the new tenant is forced to pay the rates arrears. This law is still affecting Irish businesses in the 21st century despite being brought into effect before the Famine.
“Now, thanks to a change in the law, new tenants will no longer be liable for the rates arrears of previous tenants. This will allow new businesses to take up new premises and existing businesses to change premises without the fear of having a massive rates bill hanging over them after they move in.
“I am pleased that the Government has taken this step in recognition of the great difficulty being faced by businesses around the country – this will go some way to make the rates system fairer.
“The unfair practice where new business tenants were held liable for the rates arrears of previous tenants will no longer apply; a move which will improve the business environment in towns and cities around the country.”