Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Questions (233)

Finian McGrath


233. Deputy Finian McGrath asked the Minister for Finance if he will clarify the situation regarding senior citizens complexes in Dublin City Council and the proposed property tax; and if the council pays this property tax. [8361/13]

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Written answers (Question to Finance)

The Finance (Local Property Tax) Act 2012 provides that local authorities will be liable to pay the Local Property Tax (LPT) on their properties in the same way as any other residential property owner, unless the properties are used to accommodate people with special housing needs, such as the elderly and people with disabilities. "Special housing needs" refers to the provision of housing and support for people who have a particular need in addition to a general housing need to enable them to live in the community. In relation to senior citizens' complexes, a local authority would qualify for an exemption from LPT, if it was providing some necessary support to these senior citizens in addition to the housing accommodation. Supports, in this context, would include, for example, an on-site warden or support staff, on site communal facilities such as catering kitchen for preparing group meals, dining and recreation areas, laundry and alarm system. The Finance (Local Property Tax) (Amendment) Bill 2013, published on 13 February 2013, provides that, where local authority owned properties are not exempt from LPT, for the first valuation period (up to the end of 2016) the market value of each of these properties will be deemed to be €100,000 or less, which represents a LPT charge of €45 per property for 2013. It will be a matter for the local authorities themselves whether they will pass on the LPT liability to their tenants in the form of an increase in rent or whether they will absorb the liability without recourse to their tenants. The Bill also provides that local authorities' LPT liability for 2013 shall be payable with their 2014 liability.

I am informed by the Revenue Commissioners that they are liaising with the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government to establish how local authorities will provide the Revenue Commissioners with information in relation to their LPT liability and the timing and manner of the payment of this liability.