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No rift: Noonan and Kelly say they get on grand

The two ministers insist there is no rift between them over proposals for rent certainty.

Alan Kelly and, in the background, Micheal Noonan
Alan Kelly and, in the background, Micheal Noonan
Image: RollingNews.ie

MICHEAL NOONAN HAS moved to deny claims of a rift between himself and Alan Kelly over the introduction of rent certainty to address ongoing problems in the housing market.

The Finance Minister insisted today that there “isn’t any difficulty between Alan and myself” at the launch of the Mid-West Action Plan for Jobs in Limerick.

Kelly, the Environment Minister, was also at the launch and was stood beside Noonan when the Fine Gael TD insisted:

“Do you think there’d be ill-tempered exchanges between the two of us? Not at all.

The reported rift is over Kelly’s proposals to introduce so-called ‘rent certainty’ which would link residential rental prices to the consumer price index in a bid to address spiralling rents, particularly in Dublin.

The idea is that landlords would be prevented from raising a tenant’s rent above the rate of inflation except in cases where improvements have been carried out on the property.

Kelly has championed the idea since February, however he has reportedly been met with opposition from Noonan. The Fine Gael minister is concerned about such an intervention in the housing market and there was notably no announcement on rents in last week’s Budget.

However, speaking in Limerick today, Noonan insisted to RTÉ that there are no problems: 

There isn’t any difficulty between Alan and myself. We reached the point of Budget day, we announced what we had agreed, and there will be further announcements in the coming weeks, again on the basis of agreement.

He added: “What I want to stress is that both Alan Kelly and I are working together to address a problem that is quite difficult at present, particularly in the greater Dublin area.”

At the same event, Kelly also insisted there was “no ill-feeling between myself and any member of the government”.

He insisted that the proposals to address the housing market were separate to the Budget announcement last week and would be revealed “in the coming weeks”.

Spekaing in Dublin earlier, Kelly’s Labour cabinet colleague Brendan Howlin said he supported calls to introduce rent certainty but said it had to be done in a “sustainable way that doesn’t do harm to the market”.

Read: Why was there no rent certainty in the Budget?

Read: ‘Rent certainty’ might be coming, but could landlords get hikes in first?

About the author:

Hugh O'Connell

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