Wednesday 28 September 2016

Collector 'happy to see end of household charge'

Published 10/09/2016 | 02:30

It is not just the public who were happy to see the end of the hated household charge. It caused Revenue problems too.. Stock photo: PA
It is not just the public who were happy to see the end of the hated household charge. It caused Revenue problems too.. Stock photo: PA

It is not just the public who were happy to see the end of the hated household charge. It caused Revenue problems too.

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A precursor to the local property tax (LPT), the €100 levy on all households was introduced in 2012 and Revenue later took responsibility for its collection from local authorities.

If the charge was outstanding in July 2013, it was doubled to €200. At that stage, about one in four property owners had failed to pay.

Michael Gladney said collection was an "enormous" job, in part due to the lack of a good quality database setting out which households had paid.

"The way the data was captured included someone paying someone else's household charge and they were recorded as the payer," he said.

"There were 412,000 properties which, according to our cross matching of databases, hadn't paid. We had to do a fair deal of analysis. We got to a point where we could fairly confidently write to a taxpayer saying they had paid LPT but may not have paid the household charge. That was tricky to collect.

"We have €65m collected, and have brought 350,000 properties into compliance. Of the ones that are left, there are some arguments about whether it was paid. We're coming close to the end. We will collect less than €5m, and there might be 30,000 (households) left. I'm very happy that the household charge is coming to an end."

Irish Independent

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