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MEP Kelly: Rates relief for local sports clubs

Published: Thu, 25 September 2014

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Lower rates for local sports clubs will directly benefit communities across Ireland South, according to Sean Kelly MEP. “An amendment to the Valuation Bill 2012 will mean sports clubs that previously paid rates on its bar and on sports buildings, will now only pay rates for the part of the building that generates income, which is the bar in most cases.”

The former GAA President warmly welcomed the government decision, having campaigned for an easing of the rates burden on local clubs for many years in his role with the GAA and as an elected representative. “Reducing the rates burden will have a direct and tangible impact on local sports clubs which are an integral part of our communities.”

In practical terms, this will reduce significantly the size of the building for which sports clubs must pay rates and it will provide a welcome boost for clubs provided by volunteers for volunteers. Buildings that are used for the sale of alcohol or food or retail outlets will be rated but buildings that are used for community sport will be exempt.

The Ireland South MEP also welcomed the Sport Ireland Bill 2014 which will establish of a new body, Sport Ireland to replace the Irish Sports Council and the National Sports Campus Development Authority, under one agency.

“Importantly, the Bill also deals with doping in Irish sport and provides for information-sharing with relevant bodies for the purpose of combating doping in sport,” said Mr Kelly, who has advocated for a more coordinated action against doping and corruption in sport at an EU and international level.

The Government budget for sport of €95 million has been maintained this year – an increase of 28 per cent on 2013, including additional funding of €11.5 million for the Sports Capital Programme (SCP), which contributes to sporting facilities in towns and villages across Ireland. It also provides €13 million for the development of the indoor arena at the National Sports Campus, which is delivering world-class training facilities for athletes.


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