The Castlereagh Councillor said: “David Hanson’s proposals do not go far enough to help older people with the burden of massive rates hikes.
“This unjust rates system must be scrapped and replaced with a fair local income tax directly linked to people’s ability to pay. An income tax would also prevent the introduction of disgraceful water charges.
“Most older people work hard all their careers to pay for their home. They retired safe in the knowledge that their house is paid for and their financial situation is secure. For many this is now not the case because although they own their own homes, they cannot afford to live in them due to ridiculous rates bills.
“Some people’s rates bills are twice their monthly pension – its an absolute disgrace.
“How can he penalize older people so much, yet landlords who are generally wealthy are exempt from rates because they have students living in their houses.”
Sara Duncan concluded: “David Hanson can tinker with the system all he likes, but he can never make it fair. The only solution to the rates crisis is to scrap rates and introduce a local income tax.”