"Child benefit should be universal , but tax high earners more" - Ó Snodaigh
Responding to developments in Britain and the Minister for Children Barry Andrew's suggestion that child benefit be withdrawn from some children, Sinn Féin Spokesperson Aengus Ó Snodaigh called on the Government to maintain child benefit as a universal payment and tax high earners more.
"Moves by the Government to cut or restrict eligibility for child benefit would in fact be a counterproductive cost- cutting measure. By removing child benefit from high earners it would actually make child benefit up to thirty times more expensive to adminster.
"Responses to parliamentary questions that I recieved last week reveal that the current cost of adminstering child benefit stands at 0.2 per cent of the spend on it. The introduction of a means test could cause the cost of administering the scheme to rise to 6 per cent (the current cost of administering the means-tested supplementary welfare allowance).
"Child benefit must be kept as a universal benefit. The logical solution is to tax high earners more. A third tax band should be introduced taxing 48% on individual earnings in excess of €100,000. This would increase tax revenue in a fairer way, while keeping administration costs at a low. ENDS"