Derry rate hike of 3.37% will mean average bill of £484.62 in 2020/21

Ratepayers will pay an extra £15.80 a year in district rates after a 3.37% rise was struck on Monday

Monday, 10th February 2020, 6:46 pm
Rate struck.

The increase means the average domestic rates bill for 2020/21 will be £484.62.

Alfie Dallas, Lead Finance Officer with the Council outlined the impact the increase will have on ratepayers across the Council area.

He said: “For an average domestic ratepayer in this Council area, this represents a District Rate increase of 3.37% that will see the current average domestic district rates bill of £468.82 increase by £15.80 per annum of 30p per week.”

Average bill up to 484.62

He added: “On the basis of average property valuations being lower than in other Council areas, the average ratepayer in the Derry City and Strabane District Council area will continue to pay lower rates bills than average ratepayers in the majority of other Council areas. For business ratepayers, the results of Reval 2020 have been incorporated in this year’s rate resulting in non-domestic ratepayers whose property remains the same following this exercise, seeing a rates bill reduction of 2.24%.”

Council’s Chief Executive John Kelpie said building on the Council’s substantial programme of capital investment was a key priority for the local authority, with £25m having been earmarked for critical catalyst project.

He said significant progress being made towards agreement of the Heads of Terms for the City Deal and Inclusive Future Fund £105m funding package that was announced by the UK government in May last year.

“Council is anticipating that a further minimum £50m of match funding from NI Executive will shortly be confirmed hopeful bringing about investment in a range of innovation and digital projects, the Graduate Entry Medical School at Magee, skills projects and major regeneration projects in Strabane Town Centre and along the City riverfront.”

Acknowledging the significant financial pressures on Council, in particular the impact it has on less wealthy and most deprived Councils, the Council Chief Executive said further anticipated Central Government budget cuts to Rates Support Grant have had a significant impact but that lobbying to get these cuts reversed would remain a key priority for the Council.

Concluding John Kelpie said Council was committed to working in partnership with partners and Government departments to deliver on the objectives and targets of the Strategic Inclusive Growth Plan. He said the Plan was key to the development of the region to create over 10,000 new jobs in the Council area over the next 10 years, see a reduction in unemployment levels to below the Northern Ireland average and ultimately improve the wealth, prosperity and general well-being of citizens.

He added: “The agreed District Rates increase will allow Council to drive growth and investment right across the City and region. It will ensure Council can provide continued delivery across all Council’s front-line services from refuse collection, street cleansing services, building control, planning and environmental health, grounds maintenance, parks and cemeteries to leisure, sport, health and community development, as well as vital corporate services.

“While setting a rate is a challenging process in light of the financial pressures and cuts imposed, we are confident that Council can continue to deliver on its commitment to invest in growth and development so that we can achieve our targets of improving the wealth, prosperity and well-being of the citizens living and working in the City and District.”