Dáil Éireann - Volume 486 - 10 February, 1998

Written Answers. - Liquor Licences.

189. Mr. Perry asked the Minister for Finance if he will have arrangements made to grant renewal of a licence, based on the additional information provided, to a person (details supplied) in County Leitrim; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [3258/98]

Minister for Finance (Mr. McCreevy): I am informed by the Revenue Commissioners that the last publican's licence issued to the husband of the person in question was issued in March 1996, in respect of the 1995-96 licensing year, which ended on 30 September 1996. No application was made for tax clearance or for a licence before the end of the 1996-97 licensing year, that is, 30 September 1997.

The Revenue Commissioners advise that the tax affairs of the taxpayers in question would not preclude their receiving a licence. Indeed, the husband of the person in question received a tax clearance certificate from the Collector-General on 15 January 1998.

[1594] The difficulty in the case is that the Collector of Customs and Excise may only issue licences before the end of the relevant year. After 30 September 1997 it is not legally possible for him to issue a licence in respect of the 1996-97 year. Further, he cannot renew the licence for 1997-98 because the licence has lapsed through non-renewal in 1996-97. Because of the importance of timely renewal, the Collector of Custom and Excise issues a reminder and the appropriate forms to each licence holder in April each year.

The remedy in this case is for the taxpayer to apply to the Circuit Court to obtain a new licence. This has occurred in the past and similar applications have been successful.