The Department of Housing, Local Government & Heritage issued details for the Commercial Rates Waiver to be applied for the first quarter of 2021.
On 30 December 2020 the Government announced Level 5 restrictions including the closure of non-essential businesses from close of business on 31 December until 31 January 2021. Further restrictions were announced on 6 January 2021. In order to reflect these restrictions and to continue the supports available for ratepayers, and in recognition of the impact of the ongoing trajectory of COVID 19, a further waiver of commercial rates will apply to eligible businesses in the first quarter of 2021. This three-month waiver has modified criteria and accordingly is a separate, standalone waiver scheme.
The three-month waiver will apply to eligible businesses and will take the form of a credit in lieu of rates. The value of the waiver is the equivalent value of 25% of the annual rate bill for 2021. The waiver will apply to businesses closed by, or badly impacted by, Level 5 restriction.
How to apply
An application to Laois County Council is not required. Laois County Council will automatically apply a 100% credit in lieu of commercial rates, for a three-month period, to classes and categories of occupied rateable property where the occupying business is not in an excluded category identified below.
The credit in lieu of rates for the first quarter of 2021 does not apply to categories listed below:
- Public Service
- Vacant Properties (all vacant property as is ordinarily understood for rates is excluded from the waiver, without exception)
- Global Utility Networks on the Central Valuation List;
- Properties in the “Office” Valuation Category;
- Properties in the “Industrial Uses” Valuation Category;
- Properties in the “Miscellaneous” Valuation Category;
- Properties in the “Minerals” Valuation Category;
- Properties in the “Utility” Valuation Category;
- Supermarkets greater than 500m2 (Categories Supermarket 2 and Supermarket 3);
- Properties with the valuation category of “Department Store” but which are occupied either partially or wholly by a supermarket which sells food and/or groceries;
- Banks, Building Societies and Credit Unions;
- Pharmaceutical manufacturing; and
- Premises contracted to provide services related to the COVID 19 pandemic to/on behalf of the State, where the State is already compensating for rates as part of the contract between the occupier or service provider and the State.
Business in the excluded categories above may seek eligibility from Laois County Council if it can be shown the business was severely impacted by the pandemic. The ratepayers may engage with Laois County Council. The Council may request documentary evidence to support eligibility. For businesses in the excluded categories wishing to make an application, please apply to email@example.com or by phone at 057 86 64163 before the 26th February 2021
Should you have any enquiries in relation to the Rates Waiver 2021 please contact the Rates Team on 057 8664163 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org