As over 6000 people respond to Gwynedd Council’s consultation on second home council tax premium, Plaid Cymru Gwynedd Chair says: “Most local people, over 60%, support the need to increase the premium from 50% to 100%.”
Councillor Elin Walker Jones commented on findings from a report made public today, that will be discussed by Gwynedd Council’s cabinet next week (Tuesday 16 February)
Of the homeowning taxpayers who do not pay the premium, 61% said they supported the rise from 50% to 100% in council tax for second homeowners whilst 37.7% felt that rising the premium would have a positive impact on the local economy.
A staggering 3,326 second homeowners responded to the consultation. 95.5% second homeowners stated that it would not be appropriate to raise the council tax premium from 50% to 100%.
“Local people are aware that we have reached a crisis point within the housing market, here in Gwynedd. Councillors from across the political spectrum are generally united in Plaid Cymru’s calls to strive for change.
“Our first and foremost principle is to ensure people, especially young people, have the right to a comfortable home here in their locality. That is our fundamental aim, as we continue to discuss a raft of housing issues, here in Gwynedd.
“The housing market has been in overdrive since the end of the COVID-19 restrictions and we have seen a huge rise in house prices. Houses are selling without delay, often paid for with cash. It is clear that many are being bought as second homes, places for people to escape the rat race, escape populated areas and visit occasionally during the year.
“Some of these houses prevent young people from getting their feet on to the property ladder. My main concern, as a politician, is to support a local person to find a home.”
Gwynedd recently announced its ambitious £77 million action plan for housing in the county, providing quality homes that the people of Gwynedd so desperately need.
A detailed report released in December by the planning department saw that 8% of the housing stock in Gwynedd is now a second home, with 60% of local people in Gwynedd currently priced out of the housing market.
Cllr Elin Walker Jones said: “A number of Plaid Cymru Gwynedd Councillors believe that raising the premium from 50% to 100% is a key tool to help tackle the problem.”
Plaid Cymru-led Gwynedd Council first introduced the council tax premium for second homeowners back in April 2018, raising the council tax premium for owners by 50%.
On 3 of December, Deputy Leader of Plaid Cymru Gwynedd, Dafydd Meurig said that Gwynedd Council needed to consider increasing the second home premium from 50% to 100%. Gwynedd Councillors backed his calls and the cabinet was tasked with consulting with the public. The report to cabinet concludes that consultation process.
Gwynedd’s full council will meet on 4 of March to make a decision.