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Local Authority service charge inflation rates astonishing

10 March, 2005


Sinn Féin councillor Joe Reilly has described news that local authority service charges had risen by ten times the rate of inflation in the last three years as "astonishing" and further confirmation that this Government was engaged in "slight of hand economics" and was "hell-bent on screwing people for every penny they can."

He went on to say that the increase in Health service charges by almost six times the rate of inflation was "evidence that access to healthcare is becoming increasingly dependent on ones ability to pay."

Councillor Reilly was responding to the latest consumer price index published today. He said, "These latest figures are astonishing. While consumer price inflation itself is running at a fairly modest 9.8% over the three year period the inflation in local authority service charges was running at over 100%.

"It is now abundantly clear that the Government is engaged in slight of hand economics. While claiming to operate a low tax economy, they are at the same time hell-bent on screwing people for every penny they can through double taxation and levies. This is the least equitable way of raising taxation. It is not based on ones ability to pay.

"What is also very worrying from this report today is the news that inflation in Health service charges is running at six times the rate of inflation. This is evidence that access to healthcare is becoming increasingly dependent on ones ability to pay." ENDS

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