independent

Sunday 20 April 2014

Public sector salary cap planned

Pearse Doherty said the Government had a choice ahead of next month's Budget to target struggling households or the most well-off

High-earning public sector workers would be hit with a 100,000 euro pay cap under Budget plans unveiled by Sinn Fein.

The party has targeted hospital consultants, city and county managers, TDs and senators as well as state agency chiefs for salary reductions in its proposals.

It is also arguing for wealth taxes, instead of a property levy, including a new 48% income tax rate for earnings over 100,000 euro.

The rich would further be asked to pay a 1% levy on wealth over one million euro, except farms, business assets and a fifth of the value of family homes and pensions.

Pearse Doherty, Sinn Fein's finance spokesman, said the Government had a choice ahead of next month's Budget to target struggling households or the most well-off.

"We believe there are people in society that can afford to pay a bit more," he said.

"It is not just about the fairness and justice of that, it is also, in our view, good for the economy."

In its Budget proposals, Sinn Fein said it would make up most of the 3.5 billion euro in necessary savings through new taxes, raising 2.75 billion euro.

These would also involve a clampdown on the black market and false revenue returns, changes to tax reliefs, tax hikes on "super-pensions" and a new 5% levy on all gambling, to be paid for by customers.

Other measures include charging the full cost of private care in public hospitals, bringing in more generic alternatives to branded medication and capping hospital consultants' pay at 150,000 euro for three years.

Press Association

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