New super councils will hit many Castlereagh ratepayers very hard – Alliance

Alliance Vice Chair and Castlereagh Councillor Michael Long has stated that the creation of the new super councils will hit ratepayers who are now in Castlereagh but will soon be within the Belfast boundary. He stated that this change has caused worry and confusion among those affected, as they will see large rates hikes when the super councils come into being. Michael Long demanded clarification and stated that this anomaly strengthens the case for scrapping rates and introducing a fair local income tax.

Cllr Michael Long said: “The difference between rates bills in Castlereagh and Belfast is a large sum of money. When these new super councils are introduced many people will be changing from Castlereagh to Belfast council, therefore they face massive rates hikes.

“As these people had no say in this matter, it is totally unfair that they are going to be hit with big increases in their rates bills.

“This will hit local people very hard and I demand clarification from government on this issue.

“I would also like government to state whether there will be any interim measure to alleviate the rates burden facing the householders who are changing from the Castlereagh area to the new Belfast super-council.

“This unfair rates system must be scrapped. A local income tax is the solution to this problem. It would be based on people’s ability to pay and would help older people and those on low incomes.

“The tax burden for northern Ireland could be vastly decreased if segregation was stopped here. The government wastes £1 billion yearly on duplicate facilities instead of providing shared services, which would promote good relations and save cash.”


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