In order to continue supporting businesses and ratepayers, and in recognition of the ongoing impacts of COVID 19 and the associated public health restrictions, the Government has put in place a commercial rates waiver for the first half of 2021. It applies to businesses most seriously affected by ongoing restrictions. Automatic eligibility is extended to retail, hospitality, including hotels, pubs and restaurants, leisure and entertainment, personal services such as hairdressers and barbers, health services and various other categories.
Local authorities are required by law 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 Valuation Acts 2001 to 2015. The rates liability of a property is determined by multiplying the valuation of that property, which is set by the Valuation Office, by the Annual Rate on Valuation (ARV). The ARV is decided by the elected members of each local authority as part of the annual budget and its determination is a reserved function.
As has been the case since the outset of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Department will continue to engage with the local government sector and with individual local authorities on the financial impacts of the pandemic. As with all public health measures and associated supports, the waiver of commercial rates will be kept under review.