Naas Town Council defends rates demand

RETAILERS complaining about the amount of rates they pay to Naas Town Council are being encouraged to contact the Valuation Office (www.valoff.ie).

RETAILERS complaining about the amount of rates they pay to Naas Town Council are being encouraged to contact the Valuation Office (www.valoff.ie).

A small number of Naas business owners face court action in the new year over non-payment of rates; in most cases dating back at least 2 years.

Naas Town Clerk Ken Kavanagh has pointed out that rates have not increased for three years and the local authority is obliged to seek and collect rates.

He said rates contribute to the provision of services such as public lights, street cleaning, roads and footpath upkeep, playgrounds, parks, open spaces, environmental protection, libraries and the fire service.

Individual properties have a rateable valuation which is applied by the Valuation Office in Dublin.

The RV is the value of the property determined by the Commissioner of Valuation.

This figure is multiplied by the Annual Rate on Valuation which is set by the local authority eg Naas Town Council every year.

The amount rates paid by individual businesses depends on factors such as the business location, square footage and the nature of the business.

“Naas Town Council is obliged by law to levy and collect commercial rates. The majority of businesses in the town are compliant when it comes to paying commercial rates and their contribution towards the local community is recognised and appreciated,” said Mr. Kavanagh.

He added: “However, unpaid rates have a serious effect on the council’s ability to deliver essential services and legal enforcement will be pursued where necessary. It is also unreasonable that non-payers should benefit from the efforts of other, often competing, rate-paying businesses in the town.”

Naas Mayor Willie Callaghan said the council is very much aware of the difficulties facing businesses and in every way tries to support local industry and commerce.

He said the Christmas promotion in Naas demonstrates how the town council, North Kildare Chamber and local traders can and have worked together to promote the town.

He also said NTC is collaborating with North Kildare Chamber to fund and develop a marketing plan aimed at “raising the regional, national and international profile” of the town as well as boosting the local economy through increasing visitor footfall and helping to make local businesses more sustainable in the process.

- Paul O’Meara