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Newry and Mourne have set their Rates for 2014/2015. Photograph: Columba O'HareNewry and Mourne District Council has set its Rates for 2014-15 at a meeting earlier this evening.

Newry and Mourne District Council struck its rate to meet the cost of services it provides. They agreed to a 0% increase in the district rate.  This means households in Newry and Mourne District face an increase of 1.46% in their overall rates bill (assuming Regional Rate increases by 2.7%)  – an average of 20 pence per week or £10.49 per annum on a property with a capital rate value of £100,000.

Down District Council which merges with Newry and Mourne in 2015 also struck a rate of 0%

The Mayor Councillor Michael Ruane thanked Councillors and Management for their cooperation in achieving a realistic rate for 2014/15 and he said that he was pleased that Newry and Mourne District Council have continuously achieved their objective of striking a rate which is appropriate and realistic.

Councillor Charlie Casey, Group Leader for Sinn Fein stated “I am delighted that our Council has worked collaboratively to ensure we were able to strike a 0% rate rise.   During a time of economic recession it is incumbrant on all parties to work together for the benefit of the ratepayers and local businesses”.

Councillor Michael Carr, Group Leader for the S.D.L.P. stated “It has given me great pleasure to achieve a 0% increase in Newry and Mourne District Council’s rate for 2014/15.   A lot of time and effort has been put into the rate process to ensure we proposed a 0% rise without having any negative impact on Council Services.

During 2013/14 year the Council continued to deliver a programme of capital developments throughout the Newry and Mourne District.  These included a number of schemes including:

Bloody Bridge and Donaghguy Enhancement Schemes as part of the Mourne Coastal route

Annalong Cornmill restoration underway

Commencement of construction of Kilbroney Park Events space

Newry City Centre Revitalisation and Wifi Scheme

St Patrick’s Trail complete

Mountain Bike trails completed and fully operational and provision of additional car parking space at Kilbroney Park

South Armagh Landscape Partnership bid submitted

New signage and interpretation at Slieve Gullion Forest Park

Newry Linkages Public Realm Scheme commenced

Heritage Lottery Fund Stage 1 funding for Warrenpoint Park secured

Carnegat Multi use games area. 

Christmas Illuminations upgraded

Newry Maritime Project – The Docker. 

Funding secured for Phase II development of Slieve Gullion Adventure Play area

Car park provision at Corry Square completed

During 2014/15 Newry and Mourne District Council will be embarking on the implementation of the largest capital programme in the history of the Local Authority which will include:

Completion of Phase I new Swimming Pool in Newry City.

Commencement Phase II new Sports Centre

Newry City Linkages Public Realm Scheme completed

Kilbroney Park Events Space completed

Kilbroney Park Narnia Trail completed

Kilbroney Park Masterplan and Mountain Bike Trail Phase II Technical Assessment carried out

Annalong Cornmill Interpretation scheme completed

Ongoing development of Public Realm Schemes at Warrenpoint (Church Street and The Square) and Newry City Cathedral Quarter

Implementation of Rural Village Plans Enhancement Schemes throughout the District

Develop plans for the Mourne Esplanade Scheme via. the SEA fund

Development Phase of Warrenpoint Park HLF Regeneration Project

Complete Crossmaglen Community Centre extension. 

Culloville Community Centre – new build.  

Bessbrook multi use games area. 

Ballyholland Community Centre – new build.  

Slieve Gullion children’s adventure play area - Phase II Giants Lair 

Changing units at Orior Park and Tandragee Road playing fields.

To commence refurbishment of Newry Town Hall arising out of Feasibility Study

Additional investment in Sean Hollywood Arts Centre: improvement and enhancement of audio/visual facilities

Minor works to improve Newry and Mourne Museum exhibition spaces and meeting rooms

Increase in programming and marketing budget for the Arts

Support for Giro d’Italia event, South Armagh

Support for Ross Bicentenary event

Extension of Newry & Mourne District Council facilities at Council Offices, Monaghan Row, to accommodate the new Shadow and Super Council.

The Council will also

Replace the Air Quality Monitoring Equipment in Newry City

Provide a range of energy efficiency projects within Council Building Stock to make them greener and more efficient to run

Expand charging posts network throughout the district for electric vehicles

Work in partnership with other statutory and voluntary bodies to improve the health and wellbeing of our resident. 

The Council will continue to fund community initiatives through its voluntary contribution scheme.   The gross budget will be £1.5 m (including £242,000 of grant aid) which includes economic development, covers a wide range of schemes and projects and acts as a catalyst to lever substantial funds for community sectors.

Whilst the district council sets the district rate, it is the Land and Property Service that collects it. The breakdown of the Council rates is available on the Council website  www.newryandmourne.gov.uk

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