Ireland:Labour Accept No Change To Early Payment Requirement For 2014 Property Tax
06 November 2013
Posted by: Author: Harry McGee
Author: Harry McGee (The Irish Times)
Party has all but conceded it has failed to get the Revenue
Commissioners to change its requirement that households paying the 2014
property tax by credit card or debit card must do so later this month.
Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore
intervened at the weekend, saying it was unfair to ask households to
pay a 2014 tax in 2013. He urged Revenue to revisit its decisions of
imposing a November 27th deadline for card payments.
However, Fine Gael
did not support the Labour stance on this issue with Taoiseach Enda
Kenny insisting on Saturday night that Revenue was entitled to collect
the property tax in the manner in which it saw fit. Fine Gael Ministers
accepted the letters sent to some 960,000 households may have given rise
to confusion but would go no further than to say that additional
clarification was necessary.
Minister for Finance Michael Noonan
met the chairwoman of the Revenue Commissioners Josephine Feehily on
Monday night and briefed his ministerial colleagues on the discussion at
yesterday’s weekly meeting of Cabinet.
Ministers were informed that as of yesterday some 50,000 households had filed returns for the tax.
spokesman for the Tánaiste said he welcomed that further clarification
had been given on payments by cheque, which ensured that those paying by
this method could do so up to January 1st.
he said a "somewhat worrying situation” remained where people who paid
by credit or debit card were required to make the payment in November.
an acceptance that Labour could do little to change that, the spokesman
said: "Ultimately the arrangements are for the Revenue Commissioners
who are independent in their work.”
It was signalled, nonetheless, that the junior Coalition partner was not going to pursue the matter this week.
Ms Feehily will appear before the finance committee of the Oireachtas
tomorrow and will set out Revenue’s approach to the tax and its
rationale for asking for November payments. Mr Gilmore, his spokesman
said, would await the outcome of that meeting and might return to the
leader Micheál Martin urged the Taoiseach to accept an amendment to the
Finance Bill that would allow the tax to be paid in 2014.
Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams alleged unfairness on the part of the Government.
This article first appeared in irishtimes.com.