Video: Property tax overhaul, Garda anti-corruption, hotels set to reopen

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Covid recovery plan

Ministers have agreed a €3.6 billion package of spending supports and measures to boost the economy as it emerges from the Covid-19 pandemic.

The pandemic unemployment payment (PUP) will be closed to new entrants from July while a reduction in rates is expected to begin at the start of September.

Taoiseach Micheál Martin defended the changes to PUP, saying the Government had “fulfilled its commitment” in not having a cliff edge in cuts.

Property tax

Homes built after 2013 will be liable for local property tax under plans approved by Cabinet today.

The change is likely to come into effect next year, bringing in taxation for around 100,000 homes which are not currently eligible.

In addition, an estimated 33 per cent of owners currently paying property tax will see it go up by one band and a smaller percentage – perhaps as low as 3 per cent – could have an increase of two bands.

Garda anti-corruption unit

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Complaints to a new Garda anti-corruption unit have included allegations of drug-taking among force members and at least one suggestion of infiltration of gardaí by an organised crime group.

Random mandatory drug testing for all force members is to be introduced within six months.

Vaccines at pharmacies

The Covid vaccination programme will be extended to pharmacies later this month.

It is expected that pharmacists will administer a “small amount” of the Janssen/Johnson & Johnson vaccine to eligible over-50s.

Meanwhile, the vaccine registration process will open for those aged 40 to 44 from Wednesday.

Kevin Lunney abduction trial

The Special Criminal Court has rejected arguments that it has no jurisdiction to hear the trial of four men accused of causing serious harm to Quinn Industrial Holdings director Kevin Lunney.

Mr Justice Tony Hunt, presiding, with Judge Gerard Griffin and Judge David McHugh, dismissed the claim that the court did not have jurisdiction to hear the case.

The court will resume at 11.20am on Wednesday to hear the arraignments.

Hospitality reopening

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar has ruled out a fast-tracked reopening of hospitality after crowds of people gathered on city streets in Dublin, Cork and Galway over the weekend.

Outdoor hospitality businesses such as bars and restaurants are set to reopen from bank holiday Monday, June 7th.

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Hotels are preparing to open from tomorrow, in advance of the bank holiday weekend.

Weather outlook

The first day of meteorological summer has brought more heat, ahead of a mixed week of weather.

Tomorrow will be largely cloudy with showery outbreaks of rain spreading northwards during the day.

The remainder of the week will see mixed conditions nationally.

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