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Separated Parents to Pay €2,000 extra in income tax in 2014

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I wrote the following article for the Irish Mirror on 4th November, 2013…   This coming week in the Dáil, TDs will be dealing with the Finance Bill.   Believe it or not, one of the biggest losers in the Finance Bill is actually separated parents. Out of the blue on Budget day, Minister Noonan announced an end to the One Parent Family Tax Credit.   This tax credit is Read More

Gold-Plated Pensions for the Golden Circle – How the top paid in the Public Service protected themselves in Budget 2014

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I wrote the following piece for the Irish Mirror on Monday, 4th October, 2013….   Now, I know pensions policy is not the most exciting thing to be reading about in the newspaper. But I’m going to tell you about it anyway. Just to make your blood boil.   You see an awful lot of taxpayer’s money- between €2 and €3 billion as a matter of fact – is spent Read More

Do they Know it’s Christmas Time at all? Revenue must accept its mistake and extend Property Tax payment deadline

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I wrote the following piece for the Irish Mirror on Monday 4th November, 2013…   Wouldn’t the Revenue Commissioners break your heart?   They didn’t cover themselves in glory when introducing the Local Property Tax this summer – giving guidance on property values that they couldn’t even stand over themselves. And making it very difficult and, in some cases, very costly to pay the tax. Anybody would think they didn’t Read More

Address to Older Person’s Protest October 22nd 2013

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Well done on showing up and taking a stand. It’s a pity we are not meeting in better circumstances and that you are being forced to protest against these disgraceful cuts.       Let’s get one thing clear from the start.   Older people have been playing their part in getting the country back off its knees.   Often without complaint and without protest, they put up with   Read More

Thousands face over-charge of Local Property Tax and they won’t even get a Refund- Dáil speech

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A Ceann Comhairle,   I raise this issue today because I believe there is a very real risk that many thousands of home-owners face being over-charged the new Local Property Tax.     The Local Property Tax is an unfair tax. It’s anti-urban, anti-jobs, and above all takes virtually no account of ability to pay.     But the administration of the tax makes that unfairness even worse.   The Read More

Revenue Property Tax Guidance Causing Widespread Confusion

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There is widespread confusion among the public as to how to arrive at an honest valuation of their property for Local Property Tax purposes because of the completely inadequate valuation guidance offered by the Revenue Commissioners. The Revenue Commissioners used a complex statistical model based on a range of data sources to arrive at an estimate for each property around the State. However, such obvious determinants of house price as Read More

Property Tax is the Final Straw

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There is one item dominating TDs clinics at the moment and that’s the Property Tax.   There is an overwhelming feeling of dismay and anger at the new tax. The Property Tax is the final straw for most people.   Older people, in particular, can’t understand how they can be subject to the tax if they are on a low fixed income. Most will be deferring the tax if they Read More

Taxpayers forking out €70 million in tax breaks on foreign property

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Irish taxpayers are forking out up to €70 million in tax breaks on property outside the State. Revenue figures, provided to me through a Dail question, show that in 2010, the last year for which figures are available, the estimated cost of allowing landlords write off mortgage costs against rental income from foreign property was €69 million. In 2009, the cost amounted to €71m. In total there were 13,522 cases Read More

Higher Earners can’t be the new Untouchables

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If reports are true that Fine Gael Ministers are only prepared to allow for extra tax on higher earners if cuts are also applied to social welfare recipients, then this represents a new low in Irish politics. So much for fairness and social solidarity.  Either we are in an emergency situation or we are we are not. Approximately 100,000 people earn in excess of €100,000 (based on pq reply 6683/12). Read More

Up to 70% of Pension Tax Reliefs go to High Earners

The most recent data available on tax reliefs on pension contributions reveal that the State is foregoing €200m per year as a result of tax breaks on pension contributions made by people earning over €100,000 per annum.  The figures relate to just two pension products, Retirement Annuity Contracts (RACs – used mainly by the self-employed) and Personal Retirement Savings Account (PRSAs). The figures were compiled by the Revenue Commissioners in Read More