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Falling prices will be cancelled out by Finance Bill – Morgan

11 February, 2010

Speaking today after the release of the Consumer Price Index for January 2010, Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Enterprise, Trade and Employment Arthur Morgan said the benefits of the lower prices highlighted by the report will be cancelled out by the Finance Bill.

Deputy Morgan said it was an indictment of the Government that the costs of health and education have gone up.

“Prices may be falling for some commodities like clothing, footwear, food and beverages but these are more than offset by increases in education, transport and health. However, the benefits of these price drops will be cancelled out by the extra burdens placed on households by the provisions of the Finance Bill.

“It is an indictment of this Government that the costs of health and education, two areas of responsibility for the Government, have gone up.

“Now that people are forced to pay more for education and health, which should be fundamental guarantees to each person by the State, the Government are creating further inequalities and thrusting more and more people onto the margins.

“Budget 2010 has done nothing for the ordinary people of this State but given them a larger burden to carry.

“The decrease by 15.3% in housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels will be short-lived as the application of VAT to public bodies which provide bin collections, recycling, off-street parking and so on, will see charges for ordinary people rise – pushing up again the cost of living. The addition of VAT to bin charges will be implemented in tandem with the eradication of the tax relief for these charges.

“Today’s CSO figures will soon be a part of a ‘before and after’ scenario where the people will be able to see that, when the cost of living in respect of housing and other domestic charges were decreasing and perhaps making life a bit easier, the Government took calculated measures to drive these costs up again.” ENDS

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