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Saturday 21 April 2018

Cost of new household tax to be revealed by end of the month

Fionnan Sheahan Political Editor

Homeowners will find out by the end of the month how much they will be paying in a new household tax next year.

The plans for the rollout of the new household service charge -- a precursor to a property tax -- will be signed off on by the end of June.

The Cabinet will also discuss the installation of water meters in every house in the country next month. Once houses are metered, water charges will be introduced.

Environment Minister Phil Hogan insisted yesterday the "principle" of the household charge was agreed in Government. "There is nothing agreed by Cabinet. That is what the Taoiseach and Tanaiste are saying," he said.

"I haven't brought proposals to the Government yet, which I will in the next couple of weeks about its implementation. It's part of the EU-IMF agreement. We are obliged to do so. It's signed up for by the previous government," he added.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore managed to cast doubt on the introduction of the charge.

But Mr Kenny indicated yesterday that the charge was going ahead and the details would be agreed by Cabinet this month.

"The Government haven't decided on this but it will be decided probably before the end of June, so that people will be made aware well in advance of what's involved here.

"So a memo will come before Government in the next couple of weeks and we will make that decision," he said.

The Taoiseach denied there was any confusion on the matter or disagreement between the coalition partners.

Earlier in the day, Mr Kenny retreated from media queries about the tax issue with his handlers robustly dictating he would not be taking questions on any matter.

But Mr Kenny later did agree to take questions.

Irish Independent

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