Government plans overhaul of property tax to avoid ‘timebomb’

Seen & Heard: Delay to law on taxing multinationals, Cairn sells student flats

Revenue documents show that the Government intended scrapping the single property tax rate – tied to a home’s value – in favour of a new system based on where people live.

Revenue documents show that the Government intended scrapping the single property tax rate – tied to a home’s value – in favour of a new system based on where people live.

 

The Government plans to overhaul property tax to avoid a “timebomb” ahead of a general election, the Sunday Business Post reported.

The paper said that Revenue documents showed that the Government intended scrapping the single property tax rate – tied to a home’s value – in favour of a new system based on where people live.

The move is designed to avoid a timebomb when homes are revalued in 2019 for the first time in six years.

“It will mean that most householders pay broadly the same property tax bill as before, even though house prices have soared since they last valued their homes in 2013,” the newspaper said.

Home-owners will have to submit the estimated market value of their home in November next year to the Revenue, but the tax will no longer be based on the rate of 0.18 per cent of this figure.

Instead each of the Republic’s 31 local councils will be given a different property tax rate, with the aim of collecting broadly the same amount of tax as before, The Sunday Business post explained.

Data protection

According to the same paper, rugby’s international governing body is seeking changes to data protection laws prevent major headaches in anti-doping investigations.

World Rugby has written to the Minister for Sport, Shane Ross and Data Protection Commissioner Helen Dixon, seeking new regulations that provide a clear statutory framework for anti-doping.

The organisation is concerned about the implications of data protection regulations for anti-doping and other “sporting integrity” activities.

Anti-doping data falls under health data, one of the most sensitive categories of personal data regulated by tough new EU rules introduced in May.

This could give rise to difficulties for sports organisations when it comes to transferring this information from one jurisdiction to another.

For groups such as the Irish Rugby Football Union, the newspaper says the problem could be even more acute after Brexit, as it will be transmitting this information between an EU and non-EU state.

Taxing multinationals

Political sensitivities over how multinationals are taxed led the Government to delay passing a new law exempting dividends paid by foreign subsidiaries from being taxed in the Republic, the Sunday Times reported.

The exemption was seen as an important concession for companies facing an EU crackdown next year on the diversion of profits to low-tax jurisdictions. However, it would also have benefitted Irish-owned businesses with overseas subsidiaries.

Minister for Finance, Paschal Donohoe, has pledged to include measures governing the taxation of controlled foreign companies in the finance bill that will give effect to the budget he will outline next month.

Tax advisors also expected him to include the exemption for dividends from foreign subsidiaries. However, the Government delayed introducing the exemption as it feared that the EU would interpret it as a yet another tax break that multi-nationals could abuse.

Student accommodation

Patrick Cox’s Carrowmore Property is paying €45 million to Cairn Homes for three blocks of students’ flats, according to the Sunday Times.

The newspaper reported that Carrowmore is buying a 112-bed scheme in Blackhall Place and a 400-bed block in Cork Street, both in Dublin, along with a 117-bed building in Eyre Square, Galway, from the quoted builder.

Cairn revealed the student accommodation sale in its half-year results last year, but did not name the buyer, the newspaper said.