5 April 2012 2 Comments by The Northern Standard

A total of 4,091 people had paid the household charge at local authority offices throughout Co Monaghan by the deadline of Saturday, March 31 last, Acting Co Manager David Fallon told Monday’s meeting of Monaghan Co Council.
Mr Fallon expressed the view that the collection performance of Monaghan’s Co and Town Councils was extremely good, representing approximately 20% of the eligible households in the county compared to a local authority collection average nationwide of around 13%, and was contrary to some weekend newspaper reports suggesting that Monaghan had one of the lowest collection rates for the household charge in the country.
Media reports suggesting that local authorities could be penalised in future Local Government Fund allocations if the performed poorly in the collection of the charge excited some concern among the councillors, who, by 13 votes to five (the SF members opposing), passed a motion put forward by Independent councillor Paudge Connolly, and seconded by his non-party colleague Seamus Treanor, calling on the Minister for the Environment Phil Hogan and Taoiseach Enda Kenny to extend the payment deadline by three months to facilitate those wishing to pay the charge.
This proposal also carried an amendment from Fine Gael’s Aidan Murray seeking the introduction of a deferred method of payment for the charge.
However, a similar voting pattern defeated a SF motion that called on Minister Hogan to repeal the household charge legislation and for the Government to bring in a supplementary Budget that would address the resultant Exchequer shortfall.
A lively debate ensued after the Fianna Fáil councillors succeeded in having the meeting’s Standing Orders suspended to allow the Acting Manager to brief the meeting on aspects of the charge issue.
The discussion heard an appeal from Colr Murray for the Council to show leadership by advising the public to pay the charge, a questioning by Colr B McKenna of why the Government seemed reluctant to tax the country’s wealthy, and general cross-party criticism of aspects of how the household charge was handled, with FF’s P J O’Hanlon branding the Government’s performance in this regard “an unmitigated disaster”.
The FF proposal was to have Standing Orders suspended to request the Acting Co Manager to make a full statement on the percentage of the household charge collected in Co Monaghan, if there was any indication of cuts to the Local Government Fund for counties that had low collection rates, and what pressure was being placed on the Council management and staff to go out and collect the charge.
Pádraig McNally said the proposal was asking the Manager to make a statement on where they stood in Co Monaghan in relation to the household charge, in light of media reports that counties with low collection rates would suffer in future Local Government Fund allocations. Colr McNally stated that he had received phone calls from staff who …


  • John Murphy said:

    I remember one time, a long time ago, I was foolish enough not to pay a particular charge as certain politicans said they would not pay the same charge, I ended up getting find in court, only to discover that the said politicans had made their payment on the quiet……that set of footprints in the sand may well be the time you walked alone…..

  • Séan Ryan said:

    Cant pay wont pay anyone who buys into this now or in 3 months obviously can afford too, John Murphy which charge are you on about the imaginary one?