02 Dec 2021

Carlow TD calls on Council to impose vacant site levy to 'disincentivise land hoarding'

Carlow TD calls on Council to impose vacant site levy to 'disincentivise land hoarding'

Carlow TD calls on Council to impose vacant site levy to 'disincentivise land hoarding'

Fianna Fáil TD for Carlow, Jennifer Murnane O’Connor has called on Carlow County Council to impose the vacant site levy as a means of disincentivising land hoarding in the midst of a housing crisis.

In a letter to the local authority, Deputy Murnane O’Connor stated:

“The vacant site levy is a site activation and incentivisation measure for the purpose of promoting and implementing the concept of sustainable urban development, and to ensure that vacant or underutilised land in urban areas is brought into beneficial use.

“We are in a housing crisis and we need to do all we can to tackle this, hoarding of land is not something we can stand over today.”

The Carlow TD continued to say her concerns related to the Parliamentary Budget Office report which showed Carlow had four vacant sites registers in October last year. Only two had market valuation, and two were removed from the register while Carlow County Council did not collect revenue under the levy in 2020.

“The levy is to disincentivise land hoarding, it is not in itself a revenue raising exercise, however when Carlow Local Authority were asked to give an estimate of potential additional housing units which could be generated from activation of vacant sites on the register, 240 were identified. In November 2020, there were 519 candidates on the housing list in Carlow.”

Deputy Murnane O’Connor added that if the difficulty with imposing the levy lies with resources and staffing shortages at the local authority, that they can contact her immediately and she will bring it to the attention of the Minister.

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