Minister Eoghan Murphy has outlined his views on the current vacant site levy situation troubling farmers.

Land in agricultural use should not be targeted under the vacant site levy, Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy has said.

“It is up to each local authority to decide which lands go on to its register. If farmland is in productive use, it should not be included,” the minister stated.

Minster Murphy was responding to a question in the Dáil from Deputy Tom Neville, who highlighted that farmland in Limerick was being targeted under the levy.

Recently, it has come to light that as many as 15 county councils have targeted agricultural land under the vacant site levy, which was brought in to target land that was being hoarded and could be used for the development of housing.

The IFA’s stance has remained that actively farmed land should not be targeted under the levy.

“The farmers shouldn’t have to incur the cost of appealing a decision made by the county with An Bord Pleanála,” regional development officer with the Limerick IFA Denis Griffin emphasised.

“It’s now up to the minister to make sure that active farmland is removed from the vacant site levy,” he said.

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