A Mullingar businessman says the measures are another blow to small and medium businesses.
A 6% increase in commercial rates approved by councillors in Westmeath is lunacy that will annihilate small and medium businesses.
Des Walsh, from Walsh Jewellers in Mullingar, also says the grant scheme proposed to offset the cost is nothing more than a gimmick.
Nine Fianna Fáil reps along with both Green Party councillors and independent Mick Dollard voted in favour of the increase in charges.
Mr. Walsh says the measures are another blow to local business: