Calls have been made to exempt families with flooded properties from paying property tax.
With more rain predicted tomorrow and on into next week, many areas are still at a high risk of flooding and the Red Cross and Defence Forces are assisting flood hit communities across the country.
Both Fianna Fáil and Sinn Féin have now called for areas affected by the recent flooding to be exempted from the Local Property Tax.
Fianna Fáil spokesman on public expenditure and reform Sean Fleming said: “It’s simply unfair to ask families who have been washed out of their homes and suffered huge damage to their personal possessions to continue to pay property taxes while they try to get back on their feet.”
Reacting Defence Minister Simon Coveney said: “I think Sean is trying to get on the pitch in terms of trying to get the government to do things”.
But he added that government will consider all options.
Mr Fleming moved an amendment on the issue in the Dáil today during the debate on the Finance (Local Property Tax) (Amendment) No.2 Bill.
Deputy Fleming said: “Thousands of people have been affected by disastrous flooding across the country this year.”
He said any home “where water comes in the front door and out the back door of a house” should receive the relief.
“Many face the prospect of not being able to spend Christmas in their own homes. I don’t believe we can realistically say to these families that they must continue to be burdened with property taxes on homes they can’t live in or have to spend months repairing because of huge flood damage.”
On top of waiving property tax for homeowners he said there should be a commercial rates relief applied for businesses and self-employed people who have been flooded, who he said have “suffered damage property, stock and loss of earnings because of a prolonged closure through no fault of their own”.
Also speaking in the Dáil Sinn Féin’s Peadar Tóibín said: “What has happened during the recent storms has spelled disaster for families across the island, to turn around and demand the property tax from homes affected by the flooding is callous in the extreme.
“Homes and livelihoods have been devastated by the events of the past week. They must be exempted by the LPT.”