Tuesday 17 October 2017

Budget 2018: Welfare increases 'won’t be miserly', says Fianna Fáil

Fianna Fail's Dara Calleary wants a clear focus Photo: Tom Burke
Fianna Fail's Dara Calleary wants a clear focus Photo: Tom Burke
Niall O'Connor

Niall O'Connor

Increases in welfare payments in the Budget “won’t be miserly”.

That’s according to Fianna Fáil who today set out their expectations ahead of Tuesday’s announcement.

Fianna Fáil said it expects “modest” cuts to income tax with the party placing emphasis on the Universal Social Charge.

The party said it expects the see the minimum wage increased and that it favours retaining the VAT rate in the hospitality sector at 9pc.

“We think it's important people get a break,” the party’s finance spokesperson Michael McGrath told reporters in Dublin today.

Mr McGrath defended Fianna Fáil’s decision to continue propping up Fine Gael in Government, despite unrest within the party.

He said the Government’s record on housing and health has been an “abysmal failure” and that Fianna Fáil will continue demand action in these areas.

The party’s public expenditure spokesperson Dara Calleary said negotiations in relation to welfare payments, including the old age pension, will continue over the weekend.

But he rejected suggestions that the increases will not be felt in people’s pockets.

“We will continue to pursue a package for people on fixed incomes and welfare payments. It won’t be miserly.”

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