Cuts to sustainable energy spending a mistake - Michael Colreavy TD
Deputy Michael Colreavy, Sinn Féin spokesperson on Communications, Energy and Natural Resources has said that Budget 2015 lacks real imagination.
Speaking in the Dáil, Deputy Colreavy said:
“The government had choices in this budget. According to their figures the debt to GDP ratio is falling and this allows them greater leeway in their fiscal policies.
“However, the government did not make the fair choices, ones that would have assisted the most disadvantaged in society.
“This budget could have been a lot better for low and middle income earners as Sinn Féin’s alternative budget has shown.
“I was perturbed by Minister Howlin’s utterances yesterday that money being used for the development of social housing is coming from the sale of Bord Gáis Energy.
“While of course I welcome that the government is finally waking up and addressing the crisis that is social housing, I do not believe that two wrongs make a right.
“State assets are a benefit to the state itself and can be used as an efficient and effective means of job creation.
“Will the government attempt to sell Irish Water as means to raise funds for another project as a result of failure to raise funds through progressive taxation?
“Sustainable energy is essential not only for our environment but also for our economy.
“The development of renewable sources of energy must be a priority for this government. Therefore I do like to not the cut to Sustainable Energy Programmes in this year’s budget
“I would also like to note a cut in funding to TG4 in this year’s budget.
“TG4 is not only essential in the development and promotion of the Irish language in Ireland, it is also important for an alternative, diverse media environment in Ireland.
“Austerity has severely damaged many communities throughout Ireland. Emigration coupled with a failure to invest has ensured that these communities, especially in rural areas, have resulted in many of these communities being left in the wilderness.
“Choices could have been made by government to develop these communities and attempt to bring a new lease of life into these areas.”