Thursday 24 January 2019

Seafield Hotel is hit with rates judgment

Fintan Lambe

Wexford County Council has said that Seafield Hotel in Ballymoney is obliged to pay its €84,000 rates bill immediately following a High Court judgment last week.

The council was awarded a judgment for more than €84,000 against Seafield Hotel Ltd. following a long-running action taken by the Council against the company in respect of its failure to pay commercial rates for the hotel.

The council declined to state how many years of arrears were involved in the case. The council was also awarded the costs of its action which it will also seek to recover.

When asked what options are now open to the council to enforce the judgment, and collect the monies due, Wexford County Council communications officer David Minogue said that these include: registration of judgment against assets of the company; instructing the county sheriff to seize company assets; or seeking the winding up of the company.

Mr Minogue said that the vast majority of the county's commercial rates customers make every effort to meet their financial obligations.

'The cost of unpaid rates is effectively met by those customers who do pay' he said. 'The council would be failing in its duty to these customers were it not to use all of the powers available to it to secure the collection of commercial rates.'

'As a publicly funded body, Wexford County Council has a duty to collect all money due so we can continue to fund and drive forward the development of the county and to provide the people of Wexford with a wide range of high quality essential services,' he added.

He said that Wexford County Council offers customers a variety of opportunities and incentives in relation to payment of commercial rates.

'Regrettably, despite these facilities, a small number of businesses make little effort to meet their rates obligations, leaving the council with no option but to take the necessary legal proceedings and secure judgment - as in the case of Seafield Hotel Limited,' he said.

This is not the first time in the recent past that Wexford County Council has taken strong action against a rates defaulter in North Wexford.

Just before the August bank holiday weekend this year, a sheriff, acting on the council's behalf, moved in and seized the stock of alcohol at the Courtown Hotel, over the failure of the owners, the Sykes Hotel Group Ltd ., to pay €21,000 in rates owed for the premises.

Gorey Guardian