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Fiscal Council Report should spell the end of reckless tax cut promises - Pearse Doherty TD

7 June, 2017 - by Pearse Doherty TD

Sinn Féin Finance Spokesperson Pearse Doherty TD has said today’s Fiscal Council Report should spell the end of reckless promises made by Fine Gael, Fianna Fail and Labour to abolish or dramatically cut the USC.

He said Sinn Féin’s rejection of the last budget’s reckless cuts based on volatile corporation tax receipts has been proved correct by the report.

Deputy Doherty said;

“We are entering an extremely challenging couple of years and even before that our starting position has been eroded by reckless cuts to steady tax streams. The reckless USC cuts of the last couple of years have left us with the space we had under the rules constricted even further.

“I am calling on Leo Varadkar, Fianna Fáil and the Labour Party to make it clear that they no longer support cutting USC while our hospitals and public services are in such dire need of investment.

“The fact that these cuts were justified by a bounce in volatile corporation tax receipts makes them all the more reckless.

“The debate about what our debt target should be is largely academic. The fact is that any figure based on GDP is irrelevant in an Irish context. A new methodology needs to be agreed before we can have a real debate on what the debt policy should be.

“There are two ways to reduce the debt ratio - through paying down debt or through growing and investing. The chronic under investment of recent times means we must invest in housing, hospitals, broadband and other essential infrastructure.

“The report shows up in a stark light just how inappropriate the fiscal rules are. Sinn Féin’s opposition to them has been vindicated and others are now realising that the rules are not fit for purpose.

“I welcome the fact that the champions of the rules at home and in Europe are now seeing just what they mean in the real world. I hope that political momentum can result in radical reform of the rules especially the need for capital investment to be treated as essential to economic well-being.”


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