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  • Writer's pictureLove Ballymena

MEA Council begins rate setting process

Pictured is Alderman Billy Ashe, Chair of Council’s Policy and Resources Committee and Councillor Marc Collins, Vice Chair of the Policy and Resources Committee.

Mid and East Antrim Borough Council has begun its rates setting process ahead of the introduction of next year’s rates rollout in April 2022.

With the Borough’s rate increase for 2021/2022 once again among the lowest of Northern Ireland’s 11 local government authorities at less that 1% for both business and household rates, elected members have committed to renewing ongoing efforts to minimise the financial burden on residents and businesses in 2022/2023.

Alderman Billy Ashe, Chair of Council’s Policy and Resources Committee, said:

“Since our formation in 2015, Mid and East Antrim Borough Council has worked hard each year to strike a rate that minimises the financial burden on our residents and businesses, whilst also safeguarding high-quality frontline services and continued essential investment in the borough.

“This year will be no different, with Council’s focus remaining firmly on interrogating all options through the rate setting process to secure the very best result for our citizens.

“Through strong collaboration between our elected members and officers, we will ensure that every practical efficiency and saving is identified, and that that rate determined for 2022/2023 is balanced, fair and sustainable.”

Domestic Rates bills in Northern Ireland are made up of two elements: Regional and District Rates, with the final bill based on the capital value of the property.

The Regional Rate, accounting for 50.9% of the total bill, is set by Central Government as a contribution towards services provided by devolved Government Departments and is the same throughout Northern Ireland.

The remaining 49.1% is covered by the District Rate, which is set at a local level for Mid and East Antrim by Council and supports the delivery of frontline services and continued capital investment in the borough.

Councillor Marc Collins, Vice Chair of the Policy and Resources Committee, said that rate determined for 2022/2023 will enable investment in “a wide range of exciting capital projects”.

“Alongside delivering a rate that is affordable for local residents and business owners, Council must also safeguard significant investment opportunities across Mid and East Antrim in the years ahead,” he said.

“This includes the planned expansion of The Gobbins and works to regenerate and renew Carrickfergus town centre, together with the development of a hydrogen training academy, the regeneration of St Patrick’s Barracks and a wider investment in the development of digital infrastructure across the borough.

“As Mid and East Antrim continues upon its recovery journey from the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, rates will play a critical role in supporting these and other capital investment projects that will unlock the economic potential of the borough by driving tourism, job creation and further opportunities for growth.”

Further information on how Domestic Rates bills are calculated can be found here.


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