Following last Monday’s decision by members of Clare County Council to increase the local property tax by fifteen percent, Sinn Féin have hit out at the move describing it as “an unjust tax on the family home”.
Passed by a two thirds majority, the 16-8 vote was carried by all six Fine Gael representatives present with Cllr Roisin Garvey also supporting the hike with Fianna Fáil and the Independents split on the vote.
PRO of Sinn Féin in Clare, Peter Flannigan felt there were better ways for the local authority to generate necessary funds. “Our tax system is deeply unfair for ordinary working people while there is a whole range of alternatives to the way of raising revenue such as taxing wealth and gambling. The cost of local public services have to be met. But this week’s decision by Councillors to place a 15% hike on property is totally unjust.
“Family homes need to be protected in this time of evictions, homelessness and mortgage debt. Families need a break. There is also a smell of cronyism with councillors opting for the sweetener of the reinstatement of their discretionary councillor payments through the Municipal District Allocation Fund. Councillors have failed to face up to the reality of tax reform. Instead of standing-up for local people and to the policies of unjust taxes they have cowardly enforced the 15% hike,” he told The Clare Echo.