Offaly has lowest payment rate of charge nationally

47% or 12,566 households in Offaly have paid the Household Charge, it’s been revealed.

47% or 12,566 households in Offaly have paid the Household Charge, it’s been revealed.

Figures released by the Local Government Management Agency have shown that while 12,032 people paid the charge before the due date of March 31, only 534 have paid it since that date.

Also in Offaly there were 286 waivers with 78 for those in receipt of the mortgage interest supplement, 205 for those living in unfinished estates and three people qualifying for both waivers. That makes the total number of waivers in the county of 286. In total €1,262,396 has been paid by Offaly residents.

The LGMA also said some of those 14,184 households who haven’t yet paid can expect reminder letters in July when the first batch will be sent out.

A formal project group has been established to progress data sharing across the agencies listed in the legislation; Non Principal Private Residence (NPPR), the Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB), Revenue Commissioners, Social protection and ESB Networks. The Local Government Management Agency (LGMA) has begun the process of analysing data to identify householders who have not yet registered and paid the Household Charge.

Those who paid after March 31 were hit with a 10% penalty while those who pay between 6 and 12 months after the due date will have to pay penalties of 20% and those who do not pay until after March 2013 will have to pay 30% on top of the original charge.

Across Ireland 884,602 properties were registered for the Household Charge on or before March 31. Since this date a further 40,282 properties have been registered and paid penalties and interest of between €11 and €13 in addition to the €100 charge. 17,219 properties have been registered for waivers. €92,917,309 has been raised to date and money continues to be paid in daily. Penalties and interest continue to accrue for those properties which have yet to be registered. The Household Charge still has approximately 17,000 applications on hand waiting resolution.

People who wish to pay the Household Charge can do so online at www.householdcharge.ie

by credit/debit card or by cheque/Postal Order/Bank Drafts at their local authority office. Or they can download forms from www.householdcharge.ie and post to Household Charge, PO Box 12168, Dublin 1.

A local authority has legislative power to bring legal proceedings for an offence. However, before any proceedings are commenced those who haven’t paid will be written to and given the opportunity to pay. Jackie Maguire, Chair of the Household Charge Project Board “encourages those homeowners who have not yet registered their properties to do so as soon as possible before additional penalties and interest charges apply”.

Ms Maguire said, “We are nearing completion of our first data set match and we anticipate that the results of this data set analyses will allow local authorities to send out their first batch of reminder letters next month to those homeowners initially identified in the data set as not having registered and paid. Over the coming months as further databases are compared, letters will issue to homeowners as they are identified, advising them of the outstanding charge on their property.”

Meanwhile, the Campaign Against Household & Water Tax have said, any attempt by government to deduct the household, septic tank or the new property tax at source from PAYE workers is unworkable as long as people continue to refuse to register.

“The reason this government want householders to register for this tax is because they don’t have a central database and don’t know who to levy it on. With 50% of households refusing to register, that remains the case. People have nothing to fear from the latest reports and should hold firm in their determination to boycott this tax and force its abolition,” said CAHWT local co-ordinator Ray Fitzpatrick.

He added, “The fact that this government has been forced to talk about deducting the property tax at source is a testament to the strength of the campaign of opposition and boycott. The Campaign exists in every county in Ireland and the boycott campaign has been and remains extremely strong so it’s no wonder that the government are casting about for ways to attempt to break the largest boycott in the history of the state.”