Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Ceisteanna (497, 498)

Dessie Ellis

Ceist:

497. Deputy Dessie Ellis asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government his plans to introduce exemptions or waivers from commercial rates for start up businesses. [31522/13]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Dessie Ellis

Ceist:

498. Deputy Dessie Ellis asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government his plans to introduce exemptions or waivers from commercial rates for the arts and culture sector. [31523/13]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Environment)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 497 and 498 together.

Local authorities are under a statutory obligation to levy rates on any property used for commercial purposes in accordance with the details entered in the valuation lists prepared by the independent Commissioner of Valuation under the Valuati on Act 2001. Schedules 3 and 4 of that Act set out properties that can , and cannot, be considered for rating purposes. The Commissioner for Valuation has sole responsibility for all valuation matters, including determination under the Act of relevant property for the purposes of rates.

Under the provisions of the Local Government (Rates) Act 1970, a rating authority may make and carry out a scheme , providing for the waiver by the authority of all or a portion of commercial rates due by ratepayers in respect of a specified class or classes of property. The making of such a scheme is subject to my consent as nister for the Environment, Community and Local Government. No rate waiver schemes have been consented to in respect of commercial property.

While matters relating to rates are kept under regular consideration in my Department, the operation of the Valuation Act 2001 is a matter for my colleague , the nister for Public Expenditure and Reform.