Rates rise announced.. and more to come

Secretary of State, Peter Hain, has stepped up pressure on our local politicians by announcing a 19% increase in domestic rates next April. He described the move, on Radio Ulster’s Talkback, as doing local politicians a favour – by taking the hard decisions for them. Meanwhile, on the same programme, Lib Dem MP Lembit Opik suggested that a fairer system, than the arbitrary rates system, should be considered.. namely the introduction of a local income tax.