Waterford city’s hotels are currently handing over an average weekly contribution of €2,500 a week in rates, a meeting of Waterford City Council revealed this week.
During a debate on the economic hardship which the city’s hotels are currently experiencing, the figure referenced by Councillor Gary Wyse crystallised Monday’s discussion.
“That leaves hotels with an awful lot of €49 per night rooms to fill, just to make it to €2,500, never mind anything beyond that,” he said.
“We’re talking about €10,000 a month, which means €120,000 a year and in the current climate, that’s a pretty heavy burden for a business to be carrying.”
He added: “The consequences of a hotel of such a scale closing in Waterford is stark – it would mean €120,000 less for the Council coffers, and that’s a figure we simply cannot afford to have slipping off our balance sheet in the current climate.”
Members were discussing a motion put forward by David Cullinane and Tom Cunningham which called on the Council to recognise “the severe hardship (being) currently faced by hoteliers”.
The motion, also supported by Suir Area County Councillor Brendán Coffey, referred to Hotel Federation of Ireland (HFI) figures which suggest that 82 per cent of hotels will lay off further staff this winter.
It states: “The 900 hotels in Ireland encompassing 60,000 bedrooms pay approximately €90 million a year to local authorities in rates. This equates to an average of €1,500 per bedroom or 11.8 per cent of total revenue and, in many cases, can go up as high as €2,500 to €3,000 per room.”
Councillors Cullinane and Cunningham’s motion called for “the Government to immediately resource and fund the operation of the Valuations Office in order to expedite the review and revision of rateable valuation assessment of HFI members’ properties in the south east.”
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