Killarney businesses contribute to quarter of Kerry rates collected by council

Businesses in Killarney contribute almost a quarter of the total rate income collected by the council for the whole of Co Kerry.
Killarney businesses contribute to quarter of Kerry rates collected by council

The details emerged in advance of the district’s annual budget planning meeting this week.

There is growing concern that Killarney town — with less control over its affairs now that there is no longer a town council and now that it is part of a huge municipal district, including Castleisland, Rathmore, and a number of villages — is not getting its fair share. Monies collected in the area are going to other municipal districts, it is also feared.

Killarney councilor Donal Grady was told that rates collected in Killarney municipal area last year amounted to €10.1m. The vast bulk, over €8m, was from Killarney town and environs, he said. At €41.26m, rates constituted a third of the total county council budget last year.

Cllr Grady sought information on how the rates money from Killarney was spent. He was told, in a written report, it was not possible to isolate expenditure funded by rates from Killarney, or other municipal districts.

Money from the council budget is spent on housing, economic development, library services, fire services, maintenance, and roads.

Last year it emerged almost €63m, half the annual budget, goes on salaries, pensions, and expenses.

Until the restructuring of local government, some €650,000 was spent on cleaning the town; now €600,000 is the sum set aside for both Killarney and Castleisland. Cllr Grady is seeking additional resources to be ringfenced for the town next year. As well as rates, between €1.3m and €1.5m is collected in parking charges in Killarney and this now is also going to other areas, the councillor believes.

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