Concrete levy 'will turn public against mica homeowners'

Concrete levy 'will turn public against mica homeowners'

Campaigners say that the Government’s €2.7bn scheme does not offer 100% redress for homeowners. File picture: Dominic McGrath/PA

The introduction of 10% concrete levy will turn people against the homeowners affected by mica, according to a campaigner.

Donegal mica redress advocate Paddy Diver said the inclusion of the levy in Budget 2023 is driving a wedge between people affected by mica and those who are not.

He said: “The public are being turned against mica homeowners. We have mica homes in four counties costing €2.7bn.” 

The Defective Concrete Block bill, which underpins a €2.7bn redress scheme, was signed into law in July. More than 100 amendments to the bill were tabled. Donegal TD Joe McHugh lost the Fine Gael party whip after voting against the bill.

Campaigners say that the Government’s €2.7bn scheme does not offer 100% redress for homeowners. The concrete levy, set to come into effect from April, is expected to raise in the region of €80m per annum for the redress scheme.

The majority of homes affected are in Donegal and Mayo, although houses in a number of other counties have also been affected.

Mr Diver described the concrete levy as a “knife in the back” for people suffering the consequences of mica in their homes.

He said: “As homeowners we are disgusted. The scheme won’t give us 100%. 

This is another knife in the back. This is another tightening of the screw against the homeowner plus the fact that we can see the total despair that is happening with the families at the minute.

He was speaking as Sinn Féin were due on Tuesday to bring a motion before the Dáil calling for the scrapping of the proposed levy, and to call on the Government to “hold those actually responsible for housing defects to account”.

Mr Diver said that those responsible for housing defects “must have insurance” that affected homeowners could claim from.

On Monday, the Taoiseach, Mícheál Martin, said that the mica redress scheme will require significant expenditure, which would need a revenue stream. He said that the Finance Bill will flesh out the details of the levy proposal.

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