Ombudsman Andreas Pottakis is calling on local authorities to stop charging council tax for properties that are untenanted and no longer have power, regardless of when they were declared as such.
In a letter sent to local authorities, Pottakis calls on them to comply with existing legislation and accept retroactive declarations by owners regarding empty properties, which can be cross-checked with their income tax declarations and power supply termination documents.
The initiative follows numerous complaints by homeowners across the country that have been asked to pay large amounts of council taxes for the years before their empty assets were declared to local authorities.
According to the federation of property owners (POMIDA) the above practice by municipal authorities constitutes a “hidden tax” that was revealed by the federation’s branch on Rhodes, where the local authorities charged excessive amounts of council tax for years on the pretext that the date of power cut-off was not declared to the municipality’s financial department.
The ombudsman stressed to all local authorities that the law is clear in that properties are exempt for as long as they remain empty.