Friday, April 13, 2012

Replace the Household Tax with a Wealth Tax – Kelly

Cllr Anthony Kelly has renewed his call on the government to scrap the household tax ahead of today’s Labour party national convention in Galway. The Wexford Sinn Féin rep is calling on Labour party senior government member, Minister Brendan Howlin, to lobby the Labour party convention to change their stance on the controversial tax. Instead, Cllr Kelly is calling on the government to implement a fair wealth tax after it emerged that over seven hundred thousand people are living in poverty in Ireland.

Cllr Kelly said;

“Wexford Sinn Féin is calling on our local Labour party government Minister Brendan Howlin and his councillor colleagues to petition the national convention of their party to change its stance on the household tax. Figures have emerged during the week showing that over seven hundred thousand people are living in poverty in this state today. It is morally wrong and at odds with everything that Minister Howlin and local labour party councillors were elected on to pursue these suffering people to pay a grossly inequitable household tax that they simply cannot afford.”

“Over seven hundred thousand homeowners have refused to pay the household charge. It is blatantly obvious from the new poverty figures that have emerged that the majority of these families cannot and will not be able to afford to pay this tax. These people have been bled dry. I am asking Minister Howlin to represent these people now and use his influence to move the Labour party away from the maniac stance that Eamon Gilmore has taken.”

“It’s a well know story that Minister Howlin was named after a great Wexford Labour party leader, Brendan Corish. In 1967, Brendan Corish addressed his national convention and asked, ‘Do we accept man’s basic dignity as the starting point of all Government policy?’ What would Brendan Corish make of his Labour party standing against the impoverished citizens of this state today?”

“We are calling on Minister Howlin to present the sensible alternative to the Labour party convention. Axe the Household tax and introduce a wealth tax. There is no doubt that there is still wealth in this state. The Capgemini Merrill Lynch World Wealth Report annually tracks the liquid assets of the worlds wealthy. They estimate that there are over 18,000 super wealthy living in Ireland today who, through the transfer of assets from property to commodities, have recovered their wealth to 2005 levels.”

“A wealth tax would generate about €800 million a year, five times the total amount that could be taken in from the household tax in its current form. Surely it is time that the Labour party remember its roots and began to protect the basic human dignity of the new Irish poor by concentrating on a policy of fairness. Those who can afford to should pay more.”

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