Zero increase in Carrickmacross rates for fourth successive year

14 January 2011 No Comments by The Northern Standard

Rates in Carrickmacross will remain the same this year as they were last year, following the formal adoption of the Budget for 2011 at the Annual Rates Meeting of the Town Council on Monday last.
A provision for Gross Revenue Expenditure of €2,446,286 and Gross Revenue Income of €615,899 leaves the amount to be levied from rates at €1,295,041, which will require a General Annual Rate on Valuation of 65.55. This represents a zero percent increase for the forth consecutive year.
There was general support from all the members for Town Manager Paul Clifford’s view that contributions being made by the council towards the development of the town — including an increase from €15,000 to €17,000 in a fund aimed at helping the Chamber of Commerce promote local business — will be of more benefit to traders than any small reduction in rates.
Mr Clifford pointed out that a one or two percent reduction in rates would amount to a saving of only €20 to €40 for the average ratepayer, and the councillors agreed that the extra money being contributed for promoting and marketing the town could be more beneficial than what Cllr Matt Carthy described as a “headline grabbing” reduction in the rates.
Cllr Carthy and his party colleague Noel Keelan also pointed to the value of continued (and in some instances slightly increased) contributions from the Town Council to local sporting and voluntary organisations as well as annual events like the Christmas, St Patrick’s Day, June Bank Holiday and Halloween festivities. These donations demonstrated the value of a town council at a time when such bodies were under threat of being abolished, they emphasised.
Supporting these sentiments, Town Mayor PJ O’Hanlon said previous council members also had to be acknowledged for their role in building up a fund that he knew to be appreciated by the many groups that were benefiting from it.
The total budget of €2,446,286 is to be paid for through rates of €1,295,041 (53%), money from the Government through the Local Government Fund of €535,346 (22%), and income from goods and services provided by the Town Council, amounting to €615,899 (25%).
The Local Government Fund, which includes a pension levy of €24,000, is down by over €50,000 on the allocation of €586,800 (also including the €24,000 levy) given by central government last year.
It was confirmed that traffic and litter warden services would be reduced, with only €7,000 being allocated for a combined post and the service being provided centrally out of Monaghan Town Council on a “basis of need”.
Mr Clifford also revealed plans for 27 new off-street car-parking spaces in his budget presentation, stating that it is intended that this facility will have direct pedestrian access to the middle of Main Street.
Full story in The Northern Standard

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