Houses of the Oireachtas

All parliamentary debates are now being published on our new website. The publication of debates on this website will cease in December 2018.

Go to

McGrath, Michael

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. Nbr.

Budget Statement 2014 (Continued)

With the agreement of the House, I will share 30 minutes of my time with Deputy Sean Fleming.More Button

As we all know, the last five years have been incredibly difficult for the majority of people in this country, to varying degrees. People’s incomes have come under sustained attack, their living...More Button

We all hope the country is on the cusp of recovery, but it is too early to draw definitive conclusions. All of us involved in politics, particularly those in government, have a responsibility to e...More Button

It over-promises and under-delivers. When one strips away all of the PR we have seen in recent days, this budget targets the elderly, medical card holders and young mothers. It abandons people wh...More Button

The way pensioners have been targeted in this budget is disgraceful. They are our parents, grandparents, people who have lived through far greater hardships than any of us can appreciate. Not o...More Button

In a famous quip a few years ago the Minister for Finance, Deputy Michael Noonan, asked the then Minister for Finance, the late Brian Lenihan, what he had against the third child. What does the Mi...More Button

In recent days we were bombarded with spin from the Government parties that the coping classes, those who pay for everything, as they put it, would be given a break in this budget.More Button

Unfortunately, when the reality sinks in, many people will be left bitterly disappointed when it becomes clear what this budget means for them and their families.More Button

The tone of self-congratulation coming from Government Buildings will ring hollow tonight when people realise its full extent. In many ways Opposition spokespersons are responding to a budget we h...More Button

Only then will we find out the full extent of the cuts and increases buried in the detail of the budget. That detail is often carefully drip-fed in the hope it will hardly be noticed. A full asse...More Button

Often, in the hours and days immediately after a budget an issue takes on a life of its own when its full magnitude is realised. In this budget, that issue could well be removing the telephone all...More Button

They worry about ordinary things. They worry about putting food on the table, paying their mortgages and paying their electricity bills, and at this time of year they begin to worry about providin...More Button

Halfway through its term in government, this is a good time for the Government to take stock of the economy, of where it said the economy would be at this time and of where we actually are today....More Button

He now estimates that over that period it will have grown - if we are lucky - by 0.4%. That is a prediction of 5.5% versus a reality of 0.4% growth in the economy. We have had little or no growth...More Button

It goes without saying that the weak external environment has been a drag on our exports. That fact, alongside a struggling domestic economy, has resulted in an overall economy that remains frag...More Button

Our deficit, while still high, is continuing to come down. The achievement of a deficit below 5% in the current year is an important step towards achieving the milestone of a deficit of less tha...More Button

There has undoubtedly been an improvement in the jobs market in recent months, and that is welcome. As far as I am concerned, every new job, whether a part-time or a full-time job, is good news....More Button

However, this is all a far cry from the promise of 100,000 net new jobs we heard from the Government on coming into office. Job creation in the private sector has played a role in the reduction ...More Button

The letter goes on to give a detailed description of what the job in Canada would involve and states that if the person is interested, he should send his CV to an e-mail address within the Departme...More Button

Just like the Tesco ad, the truth hurts here. So anxious was the Government to assist that person in applying for the job in Canada that it provided information on the CV format Canadian employers...More Button

While multinationals remain a critical part of our economy, Fianna Fáil believes that not enough attention has been paid to the indigenous economy, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises...More Button

The lack of credit is hampering many businesses and we would like to see far more innovative measures to address this, such as tax relief for individuals and making loan capital investment to SME...More Button

In many respects, the main issues that affect small and medium-sized businesses in Ireland did not even warrant a mention in the budget. We know electricity and gas prices are going up for busin...More Button

We know the collapse in property values has contaminated many good trading businesses and there is a need for a new approach in this area. The banks need to be required to restructure SME debt to ...More Button

With regard to the VAT scheme the announcement of an increase in the threshold for cash receipts to €2 million is significant and it is to be welcomed.More Button

The Minister announced a number of measures with regard to construction. The message I want to convey today is the main issue to address in construction and property, if one wants to get the sec...More Button

The Minister announced a certain change to corporation tax today. He should be under no illusions; Ireland's corporation tax policies are under siege. We need to send out a strong united messa...More Button

Last month the European Commission sought information from Ireland, as we know, on how certain multinationals are treated from a corporation tax point of view. We need to insist this preliminary...More Button

Let us see the detail. I will not play politics with corporation tax.More Button

The Minister stated it would be in the finance Bill so let us see what is in it.More Button

Tonight between 400,000 and 500,000 people will sleep in family homes where the mortgage is in some level of arrears. Alongside unemployment it is the single greatest economic and social challen...More Button

Today 143,000 family home mortgages are in arrears and there is no easy solution to the problem. No one suggests the banks can throw away the capital the taxpayers have given them and they must be...More Button

In the majority of cases presented to the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform the bank's solution was to tell the borrower it wanted the home back and the person ...More Button

The establishment of the new insolvency service was a welcome initiative, but there is growing evidence already that thousands of the most distressed borrowers in the country who most need access...More Button

This is a shameful decision. If the Minister announced it was to be replaced with a radical new innovative policy to support those in mortgage arrears of course we would examine it and its merits.More Button

The one safety net people had, the one direct cash support from the Government to those in mortgage distress, has been pulled from under them. I cannot understand the logic behind it. It will onl...More Button

The Minister announced a new levy in respect of banks operating in Ireland. It is fair to say nobody will chain themselves to the gates outside Kildare Street tonight to protest against the intr...More Button

Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett can speak for himself.More Button

Who will end up paying this levy? Will the banks simply be allowed pass it on to customers by way of increased fees, charges or higher variable interest rates? We know we do not have a properly...More Button

The Minister is removing the restriction on the use of deferred tax assets for NAMA. This is a big win for the banks and I would like to see much more detail on it. If the banks return to profi...More Button

While people are coming to terms today with budget 2014 the truth is last year's budget has not finished with them yet. Next year hard-pressed home owners will be faced with a double local prope...More Button

The Minister announced a significant change on pension tax relief. I wish to ask on a point of equity whether it applies to the highest echelons of the public service. For example, will the pen...More Button

The Minister has announced that the lower rate of VAT will be retained in the tourism and hospitality sector. That decision will be warmly welcomed by a sector that has undoubtedly benefited fro...More Button

It is one or the other. The Minister cannot have it both ways. The truth is that he has played a three-card trick. Since he announced the pension levy back in 2011, he reiterated time and again ...More Button

Will the Minister clarify whether there is PRSI of 4% on top of the higher DIRT rate? He seems to be indicating that there is not; therefore, the figure of 41% is inclusive of PRSI.More Button

In regard to excise duties, again, the Minister has left the off-trade untouched and is targeting the on-trade with the increase in excise duties. He knows what our view is on this issue. We be...More Button

The Minister is abolishing the air travel tax from April next year in an effort to boost tourism. However, as evidence of the lack of cohesion, he is decreasing the budget for tourism programmes...More Button

It is welcome that Ireland is on course to exit the bailout programme in two months time. We do not regard the putting in place of a precautionary line of credit as being in any way a second bai...More Button

We supported the liquidation of the IBRC in good faith and I do not regret that decision. However, I am not happy with a number of issues that have emerged since. I am not happy that credit uni...More Button

The Minister needs to do a lot more work in respect of the ESM. Mr. Wolfgang Schäuble today said it was not probable that we would get a retroactive deal on bank debt recapitalisation; therefore...More Button

Yet again in budget 2014 the Government has targeted some of the weakest in society. The basic level of comfort given to older citizens is being systematically unravelled. Those struggling to k...More Button

Financial Resolution No. 7: Income Tax

I thank the Minister for his comments. I wish to ask a few questions to clarify the position. First, why is there not any anticipated yield from this measure? The Minister said it is to prevent ...More Button

On the overall issue of increasing DIRT to 41%, could the Minister clarify whether that it is a matter that will be dealt with in the finance Bill? An associated issue is PRSI on unearned income...More Button

My question is on PRSI.More Button

Financial Resolution No. 7: Income Tax (Continued)

I will give my interpretation of this resolution. Much of the debate we have just heard is straying into areas that will be part of the Finance Bill, which will provide for the increase in DIRT to...More Button

Some of the answers on PRSI have not been satisfactory, to be frank but that is a matter for debate when the relevant legislation is brought forward. We can then discuss the issue of the treatme...More Button

The whole debate about DIRT at 41% is a debate for the Finance Bill. Is my interpretation correct that Financial Resolution No. 7 concerns specific accounts from which the Government is removing a...More Button

Special Educational Needs Services Provision

Asked the Minister for Education and Skills: the position regarding the current home tuition being given to a child (details supplied) in County Cork which expires on 15 November; and if it may be extended into the future. More Button