24th September 2014

Fine Gael TD for Kildare North, Anthony Lawlor, was delighted to learn this morning (Wednesday) that Minister Simon Harris will be introducing an amendment to the Valuation Bill which will see sports clubs with bars (or other commercial facilities) receiving a partial exemption on their rates.

“This is an issue which I have been proposing for quite some time. I have had discussions with the IRFU, GAA, and the FAI about the matter and had made similar proposals to Government in the past, therefore I am delighted to hear the announcement this morning.

“At present Sports Club facilities are exempt from rates. However where a sports club has a bar all of its premises are valued for rates purposes including buildings that are purely for sporting purposes. This situation is seen as placing an unfair burden on many local clubs that are a key part of their community. Under this Amendment Community Sports Clubs will only be liable for rates on buildings that are used for the generation of income. If a sports club’s only commercial facility is the bar then it is only the bar and ancillary facilities that will be rated. This is in contrast to the current situation where a club that has a bar pays rates on all of its premises.

“I am looking forward to reading the Amendment when it is published and having further discussions with the Minister to ensure that all clubs benefit from this measure. This will be particularly important where a club’s building has a multi purpose use and despite being used primarily for sporting activities, also has the possibility of generating a commercial income”.