Thursday, October 4, 2012

No justification for cutting children's allowance - O' Súilleabháin

The local branch of Sinn Féin is making its opposition to any cuts to the children's allowance in Budget 2013 known.  Fionntán O' Súilleabháin has said that his party is opposed to any reduction to the benefit, stating that there is no justification for these cuts when there are clear alternatives available that will not impact so harshly on families.

Mr O' Súilleabháin said;

"Children's allowance is a popular target for certain political parties and vested interests in this state.  It has already been cut in recent years by both the Fianna Fail/Green government and the current Fine Gael/Labour regime."

"A government advisory group has recommended a cut of €40 a month to the children's allowance.  Such a cut would have devastating consequences and should be openly and swiftly rejected by this government.  There are clear alternatives available to balance the books."

"Sinn Féin has consistently called on those who can afford to pay more to be made do so.  Some would say that there are families who can afford to do without the children's allowance but who is going to identify those people? There are people living in houses that were bought for half a million struggling to pay their electricity bills nowadays."

"Instead of cutting the children's allowance the government should go after the incomes of high earners.  A third income tax rate of 48% on income over and above €100,000 should be introduced.  A wealth tax of 1% on all assets in excess of €1 million, excluding working farmland, business assets, and the first 20% of value of primary residences worth in excess of €1 million should also be part of budget 2013.

"The introduction of a third tax band at 48% would bring in €365 million.  Our wealth tax would collect €800 million.  The return on the proposed cut in child benefit would return only €200 million.  Clearly these alternatives make economic as well as moral sense."

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