A CORK TD will today launch new Derelict Site Levy Legislation in the Dáil, which will increase the pressure on local authorities and the minister in collecting taxes on long-term vacant properties.
The legislation is being launched by Sinn Féin TD Thomas Gould, who said he believes that increased transparency and additional accountability are necessary to tackle dereliction.
The Cork North Central TD said that, right across Cork city and county, “there are thousands of potential homes falling further and further into disrepair”.
He said the derelict sites levy was introduced as one of a number of tools available to local authorities to tackle dereliction, but he believed “this has failed”.
“My legislation would impose transparency and accountability across local and national government where there are failures to collect the derelict sites levy.”
The Cork TD said he wanted to see 75% of the levy (currently set at 7% of the property’s value) collected by local authorities or a report would have to be sent by the council to the minister, with the minister reacting appropriately.
“What we want to see is a situation whereby local authorities are applying levies on all eligible properties and collecting these levies. Not only will this act as a deterrent and ultimately reduce levels of dereliction but, in the meantime, the additional funding will support local authorities to build houses and resource communities,” he said.
Mr Gould said that, in Cork City, there was over €3.4m in untapped potential revenue for the council.
“It is so frustrating that, in the middle of a housing crisis, we are surrounded by homes that are falling apart. These homes should be repaired and made available for families who will cherish them,” he said.