Call for review of rates system to incentivise business start-ups

I’ve called for a review of the council rates system in order to prevent the ‘falling rates base’ in the local business community.
There’s a need to introduce a scheme which offers discounted business rates to new business owners in order to stimulate economic growth in Donegal’s towns and villages.
There is a need for a scheme which would incentivize business set-ups by offering a reduction in rates for the first year, for new businesses that are not in direct competition with others. The government must get town centre offices and shops reoccupied and at present the law prohibits councils to reduce rates for any reason except when a company shuts down and the rate payer can negotiate.
Until such units are occupied then confidence will not return.
In my view, the way council currently charge rates must be reviewed in the light of the falling rates base in the business community. At present councils cannot offer incentives for new businesses to set up by charging a reduced rate.
It would be better for the council to get some rates and give a fledgling business a chance if a system was introduced that allows local authorities offer a discount for an initial period. The rating system is so out of date and from another era entirely. Unless we can devise a system of rates that incentivises business rather than set up roadblocks to progress, then the prospect of stimulating economic growth in the towns and villages of Donegal will disappear.
This is an issue I will be actively campaigning for and encouraging the Labour Party to pursue in the future. It is a matter of national importance that we incentivise and stimulate business growth in the rural economy in particular.


About Senator Jimmy Harte

I am a Labour Party Senator based in Donegal North-East and a public representative for the last 16 years. I represented Letterkenny Town Council and Donegal County Council until 28th April 2011 when I was elected to the Senate I attended St Eunan's College in Letterkenny and UCD (Dublin) where I studied psychology to BA level. I also played soccer with UCD first team. I live in Letterkenny and own Harte Insurances which I set up at the age of 24. We have two offices, Letterkenny and Raphoe.
This entry was posted in County Council Issues, Labour Policy, Letterkenny Town Council Issues, Local Community News and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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