Increase in pay packets for many on first pay day of 2016 – English

Budget 2016, Business, Jobs, Meath, Wesmeath
Minister of State at the Department of Jobs and Fine GaelTD for Meath West, Damien English, has said that the USC changes introduced in Budget 2016 will be evident to thousands of people who are getting paid today (Friday) for the first time in 2016.

“Budget 2016 introduced a cut to the USC for low to middle income earners from 7% to 5.5%, reducing the tax rate to below 50%. The entry point into USC has also been increased to €13,000, exempting 90,000 low earners from the USC. All of these changes came into effect on 1st January and will be visible in pay packets this month.

“These changes to the USC, which will help spread the benefits of the recovery and will ensure that hard work pays, were opposed by Fianna Fáil; the high tax party.

“Since the launch of the Action Plan for Jobs, over 135,000 jobs have been created. More people in work create the resources to cut taxes for working people and to invest in better services.

“Fine Gael has committed to eliminating the USC altogether during the term of the next Government. We have a long term plan to keep the recovery going and will continue to make responsible decisions to keep the economy strong.

“USC changes introduced in Budget 2016 will make a small but significant difference to workers in all parts of the country. The Irish people have worked too hard to get to where we are, we cannot go back. Fine Gael is committed to getting people back to work and will use the resources created to reduce taxes and invest in vital services.”

ENDS

5 years ago today FF introduced USC. FG will abolish it – English

Budget 2016, Business, Jobs, Meath, Wesmeath
Five years on from the introduction of the USC by Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael is on course to abolish the punitive tax according to Fine Gael TD for Meath West and Minister for Skills, Research and Innovation, Damien English

“Five years ago the country was at its lowest ebb. The IMF had taken over the running of our economy. For those left in employment, Fianna Fáil introduced the Universal Social Charge which saw people’s take home pay severely reduced.

“Five years on Fianna Fáil has shown that when push comes to shove, it has no intention of reducing the impact of the USC on taxpayers. In the recent alternative budget presented by Fianna Fáil it refused to drop the main rate of USC on hard pressed low and middle income earners. They also voted to oppose cuts to the USC introduced by the Government in the last two budgets. In doing so they have reinforced their reputation as the high tax/high spend party.

“This Government has reduced the rate of USC on low and middle income earners and we will get rid of it over the lifetime of the next government, providing that our finances allow for it. We are committed to abolishing the USC because we implicitly understand that the sustainable reduction of our high taxes is good for our economy. Lower taxes support jobs and high taxes kill jobs. That’s a fact. Fianna Fáil doesn’t know where to start when it comes to job creation as evidenced by their lack of a jobs policy.  

“In January, taxpayers will see a reduction in their USC for the second consecutive year. We have consciously reduced the tax burden because people in this country pay too much tax.
 
“Five years on from the introduction of the USC we are seeing economic progress, with over 135,000 more people at work, but we cannot take for granted that stability and recovery will continue.

“The next election will be about who can be trusted to keep the recovery going, based on stability and progress as opposed to instability and chaos. We cannot go back to the same old Fianna Fáil who wrecked the economy, have learned nothing from the past and still has no plan to create jobs or ensure our economic recovery.”

Why Fine Gael is NOT a party of the elite

Action Plan for Jobs, Budget 2016, Business, Meath, Research and Innovation, Speeches, Wesmeath

Fianna Fáil’s efforts to paint Fine Gael as a party of the elite are fatally undermined by this week’s budget…

FIANNA FÁIL’S NEWEST line of attack , which finance spokesman Michael McGrath has been pushing on this website, is that Fine Gael doesn’t care about ‘ordinary’ people.

Given that Fianna Fáil screwed virtually every ordinary person in the country, the irony of this statement will not be lost on many people. This week’s budget, as with its predecessors, provided clear evidence that ordinary people are at the heart of Fine Gael’s budgetary priorities.

We reduced the rate of USC on low and middle earners from 7% to 5.5%. Low and middle earners are the focus of our tax cuts. That’s why there’s no relief on earnings over €70,000.

We believe that people should be rewarded for their work and, from January, 42,000 lower earners will no longer have to pay any USC. This means that by next year 450,000 will have been removed from the USC net by this government.

There is also a 50 cent increase in the rate of pay for minimum wage workers on the way. A full time minimum wage worker will see their annual take home pay increase by €708, a 4.2% increase, while a person earning €55,000 will see their take home pay increase by €677 or 1.8%.

The Budget also provided a €550 self-employed tax credit for small business owners, many of whom are just about getting by.

There was also a €3 per week increase in the old age pension, a €5 increase of child benefit and the commitment to provide a second year of free pre-school care, which will significantly benefit working parents and people considering having children.

So much for not caring about ordinary people.

Fine Gael is committed to ensuring that there is work for everyone who can work and that people are incentivised to work.

We also implicitly understand that lower taxes lead to further job creation. More people at work means more money for the State to spend on services like health and education and on providing strong social protection to those who are out of work or unable to work.

Not a party of the elite

mcgrathOn Fine Gael, Micheal McGrath told TheJournal.ie recently: I don’t think they care too much about ordinary people.Source: TheJournal.ie

Michael McGrath is a very capable politician and will probably be the next leader of Fianna Fáil. But I don’t believe for one moment that he actually believes the guff he is spouting.

His comments reflect a clear effort to portray Fine Gael as a party of the elite, but Michael Noonan’s Budget emphatically debunks that notion.

When I go to a Fine Gael branch meeting I meet a lot of ordinary, decent individuals who care about their community and their country. I am fairly sure that McGrath meets the same kind of people at his local cumann as does every TD when they meet their supporters. I’m sure he and Fianna Fáil care about ordinary people – virtually everyone in politics does – but caring is not enough.

Politicians are not paid to care, they are paid to deliver. Fianna Fáil has failed on this front.

In government it presided over the economic equivalent of a head on car crash. Over 300,000 ordinary people lost their jobs, saw the value of their homes plummet, struggled to pay their mortgages and make ends meet.

This government had a plan. Like all rehabilitation plans it was hard, it required sacrifices, but thanks to the resilience of ordinary Irish people it worked.

Fianna Fáil’s alternative budget doesn’t stack up. Demographic changes mean that an extra €300 million a year is needed in education and health just to keep the current level of service. Around €267 million is needed to pay for the Lansdowne Road Agreement on public sector pay increases next year. Fianna Fáil did not account for either of these in its costings.

The Irish economy is in recovery but still has a long way to go. The challenge for the next government will be to ensure that the recovery is sustainable and that we don’t see a return to boom and bust economics.

The choice facing the Irish people in the forthcoming election is clear: Do you chose a government with a strong record of delivery and a vision for sustainable growth, or take a chance on a party without a plan?

Damien English is Minister of State for Skills, Research and Innovation and a Fine Gael TD for Meath West.

USC cut will ensure recovery is felt in Meath West – English

Budget 2016

Damien English, Fine Gael TD and the Minister for Skills, Research and Innovation has said that the significant reduction in the Universal Social Charge (USC) contained in the Budget will make life easier for families and individuals across the constituency of Meath West.

“This significant reduction in the USC will help ensure that every worker in Meath West and throughout Ireland benefits from the economic recovery that is underway. Reducing USC from 7% to 5.5% on people’s earnings between €18,668 and €70,044 will make a significant difference for working families and individuals. This reduces the tax rate on low and middle income earners to below 50% for the first time since 2009.

“With most new jobs now being created outside Dublin, the USC reductions will be felt by working people across the country. Of the 56,000 jobs created in the last year, over 70% have been outside the capital. So, reducing the USC will ensure that the benefits of the recovery are spread throughout Ireland.

“Minister Noonan has increased the entry point for USC payment to €13,000, meaning a further 42,000 workers will no longer have to pay the USC. Over 700,000 of the lowest paid workers will be exempt from the paying the USC from January.

“The USC cuts are sensible, affordable steps that will keep the recovery going and bring its benefits to more households. As a result of this Budget:

  • a one income family with two children earning €35,000 will see their take home increase by €57 per month or €687 a year;
  • a single person, working full time on the minimum wage, earning €17,542, will see an increase of 4.2% (€708) a year;
  • a family with three children with parents working as a Garda and a nurse earning €55,000 and €50,000 respectively will have an additional €196 per month in their pocket (€2,300 per year); and
  • a self-employed worker earning €40,000 will see a gain of €1,002 in his or her annual net income due to this budget, an increase of 3.5%

“Tax cuts are good for our people and our economy. They create jobs, they make work pay and they attract migrants home. And, as with the tax reductions in last year’s Budget, those who will benefit most from the reduction in the USC will be low and middle income workers. The top priority of this budget is to sustain our economic recovery and bring its benefits to every family.

“Today’s USC reduction is the second year in a row that we have reduced the tax burden on low and middle-income earners. If re-elected, we will get rid of the USC altogether over the lifetime of the next government.

“Ireland now has the highest economic and employment growth in the EU, and over 125,000 jobs (net) have been created since this Government launched the Action Plan for Jobs. Our recovery is real and is helping to improve lives, however I am aware that many people are still to feel the benefit. Today’s announcement will help change that situation for the better.”