Unfair Budget rewards better-off and fails ordinary citizens - Adams
Sinn Fein Leader Gerry Adams TD has said yesterday’s Budget is unfair, gives more to those who have more and does nothing for already hard-pressed families and individuals.
Mr Adams said the Budget was an example of the Government putting its own electoral ambitions before the interests of the people.
He said that as a result of the Budget, the Taoiseach would be four times better off than a married couple with an income of €35,000 and he asked Mr Kenny if he believed that this was fair.
Addressing the Taoiseach in the Dáil this morning Gerry Adams said:
“Yesterday the Government had the opportunity to relieve the burden on long-suffering citizens. You had the ability to get rid of Water Charges and the Family Home Tax and to take the lowest-paid workers out of the tax net.
“You decided not to do this. Instead, you put your own conservative interests and your electoral ambitions before the interests of the people.
“Your Budget lacks ambition and vision. You don’t deal with the unemployment crisis, the housing crisis or the crisis in health. Half-a-million people have been forced to emigrate in the last eight years. There is a massive human cost to society, to communities and to families. You don’t deal with this.
“There is no fairness in your Budget. There isn’t even the pretence of dealing with citizens on the basis of equality. At this time one-in-seven people live at risk of poverty. One-in-four live in a jobless household. These people cannot afford to pay your Water Charges or your Property Tax.
“And even middle-income workers, who you claim will be better off, will have their modest benefits completely offset by upcoming Water Charges. For example, you Taoiseach, will be four times better off than a married couple with an income of €35,000. Taoiseach, this is your choice. This is Labour’s choice. Do you believe this is fair?”
Gerry Adams said the unfairness of the Budget is best represented by the Government’s refusal to abolish Water Charges and the Property tax.
“Fine Gael and Labour continue to over-tax ordinary families. A fairer budget would shift the burden of taxation onto revenue sources less harmful to the domestic economy while ensuring finance for frontline services.
“Abolishing the Property Tax – a deeply unfair family home charge – would be a massive stimulus for low and middle-income families and for the domestic economy.
“Scrapping Water Charges would have an even greater effect. Your proposal for a tax credit of 20% of the Water Charge Bill, capped at €100 euros, in no way compensates for the impact on hard-pressed families.
“It isn’t that people won’t pay your charges. They can’t pay your charges without getting into greater debt or cutting other necessities for their families.”
Calling again for the scrapping of the Water tax, Mr Adams said this had been the message delivered by thousands of people on the streets of Dublin last Saturday.