South Dublin homeowners will not face property tax hike

Cork County Council votes to keep tax at national rate to ‘protect public services’

Homeowners in the South Dublin County Council area will not face any increase in their property tax next year.

Councillors voted on Monday evening to apply the maximum discount of 15 per cent below the national property tax rate for the third year in a row.

William Lavelle, the Fine Gael leader on South Dublin County Council who proposed the motion, said the vote represented a "welcome mitigation for hard-pressed homeowners in Lucan and other parts of our county".

All four Dublin local authorities have now voted to cut the rate of property tax charged to homeowners by the maximum amount permissible under law.


By contrast, Cork County Council’s elected representatives voted on Monday not to reduce the property tax from the national rate.

A majority of members of Fianna Fáil mnembers, together with most independents, backed a Fine Gael proposal not to seek any cut to the tax.

‘Better services’

Fine Gael Cllr Kevin Murphy, who proposed the motion, welcomed the result and said it was a “victory for common sense” as well as the provision of better services to the people of Cork county.

Cork County councillors voted by 40 votes to 10 to support a Fine Gael motion not to cut the tax after an attempt by Fianna Fáil to introduce a 5 per cent cut and an attempt by Sinn Féin to introduce a 15pc cut were both defeated.

However, at a meeting of South Dublin County Council on Monday evening, there was cross -party support to maintain the reduced rate.

Just two councillors - Independent Paul Gogarty and Labour's Breeda Bonner - opposed the move, on the basis that the local authority urgently needed funding to provide basic services.

“People are always complaining that we do not have enough funding for homeless services, parks and other services,” said Mr Gogarty, who also opposed the move to reduce the tax last year.

“Central government has reduced its funding to local authorities and this was our only chance to secure an extra €4.5 million to €5 million.”


South Dublin County Council’s chief executive Daniel McLoughlin said the council was taking a neutral stance on the vote, but outlined the implications of reduced rates for local funding.

Mr Lavelle said the fact that the local authority had recorded a small surplus in its €200 million budget meant it was only right that homeowners should benefit from a reduced taxation burden.

The amount of property tax paid is based on the value of the property on May 1st, 2013.

At the standard rate, a house valued at €325,000 then would have a property tax liability of €585.

However, councillors in each local authority area have the power to decide to increase or decrease the rate charged in their area by up to 15 per cent each year.

Their decision holds for one year only and if no notice of change is given to Revenue by September 30th, the charge reverts to the standard rate.

With the full 15 per cent cut, a homeowner who would have had a basic or standard charge of €585 will pay €497.25.

Carl O'Brien

Carl O'Brien

Carl O'Brien is Education Editor of The Irish Times. He was previously chief reporter and social affairs correspondent

Barry Roche

Barry Roche

Barry Roche is Southern Correspondent of The Irish Times