THE Budget will be announced today, Tuesday, October 12.
Here’s everything we know so far ahead of Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe’s 1pm speech.
A €250m package will tackle waiting lists, now approaching a total of one million people.
There will a €30m cancer strategy allocation
There will be €10m to back the roll-out of free contraceptives to young adults.
Home supports and care hours will be increased.
Measures will be taken to relieve period poverty for the first time ever in Ireland.
There will also be money to expand services at sexual assault treatment units.
Options under consideration include changes to the National Childcare Scheme (NCS) as well as increased investment in childcare services to support staff retention.
Fine Gael is pushing for an increase in the universal subsidy which is just €22.50 per week. But senior Government sources have signalled it may be the next budget before costs for parents are cut in any meaningful way
The family staple of child benefit will be yet again left alone.
There will also be a significant package for carers, including changes to how they are means tested along with a €5 increase in their weekly payments.
There will also be a €10 Increase in the Back To School Clothing and Footwear Allowance payment.
The National Childcare Scheme will be increased to include children aged up to 15. Only children up to the age of three are currently covered by the subsidy. The scheme provides 50c per hour towards the cost of a Tusla-registered childcare place for a maximum of 45 hours per week.
The minimum wage will rise to €10.50 per hour.
The Employee Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS) will be extended to the end of March 2022. Announcements expected into the wind down of PUP and the CRSS pandemic schemes.
In line with the Finance Act passed last year, the carbon tax will be increased by another €7.50 this year to €41 per tonne – and will rise by the same amount in every budget until the year 2029. This will push up the cost of petrol, diesel and home heating fuels. A 60-litre tank of diesel will increase by €1.48 from October 13 and a similar tank of petrol by €1.28.
All other fuels will go up from May 2022 with an estimated €19.40 on a 1,000-litre tank of home heating oil. Mr Donohoe is resisting pressure from some in Fine Gael to scrap the planned increase over fears about its impact on home heating costs. The funds raised from the increase will go towards funding an increase in the fuel allowance as well as programmes aimed at reducing the State’s overall carbon footprint.
Coal and peat will also become more expensive from May with a 40kg bag of coal costing 89c more and a 12.5kg bale of peat briquettes costing 20c extra.
The €5,000 grant scheme for electric vehicles will also be extended for another year.
Tens of thousands of pensioners will see their weekly welfare payments increase by up to €13 under plans to be announced in today’s budget.
The state pension is set to increase by €5 to €253.30 from January while the Living Alone Allowance will increase by €3 to €22 on the same date.
All social welfare recipients will also see a €5 weekly rise along with a full Christmas bonus when Budget 2022 is announced this afternoon. The €5 increase in social welfare benefits will kick in from January 2022.
Fuel Allowance will also rise by €5 a week from midnight and will now be worth €33 per week, but carbon tax will increase.
A full Christmas Bonus will be paid to all social welfare recipients under plans to be announced.
From the first month of next year, the State pension will be €253.30 a week, the Jobseeker’s Allowance will be €208 and new parents on parental leave will receive €250 a week.
Among the welfare recipients to receive a €5 boost are those on Illness Benefit, parental leave payments and the Jobseeker’s Allowance.
Young people will be able to avail of half-price travel on public transport. Discounts of 50pc on all fares will apply up to age 24, and to young adult workers as well as those studying at third level. It will be introduced next year.
Commercial rates are to be waived for the hospitality, arts and entertainment sectors until the end of the year. Travel agents and the aviation industry are also set to benefit from the waiver which will be announced in the Budget.
Minister of State for Sport Jack Chambers will confirm today that the female GAA players will receive the same amount of state funding as their male counterparts after today's Budget. Under the current model, male players receive €1,200 from the government while female players just €400. The move to equalise payments so that male and female players receive €1,200 will be sanctioned by today's Budget with grants distributed by the Gaelic Players Association. Mr Chambers has also secured increased funding for Sport Ireland and the Gaeltacht next year.