Thursday, 18 April 2013

Questions (178)

Seán Fleming

Question:

178. Deputy Sean Fleming asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government if he will outline the methodology used by his Department in deciding the areas deemed unfinished estates in respect of the local property tax and the type of information supplied from local authorities in relation to this process; if the information from the local authorities was accepted by his Department in all cases; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [18047/13]

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Written answers (Question to Environment)

An exemption from the local property tax applies to developments listed in the schedule to the Finance (Local Property Tax) Regulations 2013.

The list of unfinished housing developments eligible for the exemption was compiled by local authorities utilising the categorisation employed for the purposes of the National Housing Survey 2012.

The Survey was carried out over the course of summer 2012 by my Department in conjunction with local authorities and the Housing Agency.

The categorisation methodology for the survey was different to that which was used in 2011 and which provided the basis for the waiver from the household charge. That earlier categorisation related largely to the level of on-site activity at the time the 2011 survey was carried out and had less to do with the physical character of a development. The 2012 survey was based purely and objectively on the actual state of completion of a development. Only developments that were deemed by local authorities to be in a “seriously problematic condition”, regardless of whether a developer was on or off site, were included.

For purposes of preparing the final list of developments to which the exemption from the local property tax would apply local authorities were asked by my Department to confirm or update the then existing list as appropriate.