Monday 14 October 2019

Budget 2020: Here's everything we know so far about the upcoming Budget

PLANS: Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe will present Budget 2020 next week
PLANS: Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe will present Budget 2020 next week
Kevin Doyle

Kevin Doyle

The countdown to Budget 2020 is on. Independent.ie will have live coverage tomorrow (Tuesday) but, for now, here's everything we know about the upcoming Budget and how it will affect you so far.

Money available:

€2.9bn

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Money already committed for spending:

€2.1bn

Health:

- €200m for costs associated with the National Children’s Hospital and National Broadband Plan.

- Free GP care for under-eights (won't kick in until September 2020).

- Free dental care for under-sixes (won't kick in until September 2020).

- Prescription charge fees for the over-70s are to be reduced by 50c.

- 56,000 more people will be eligible for medical cards as €30m allocated to larger number of people entitled to it.

- Maximum a family pays for medicine in a single month will be capped at €114 next year, to be reduced by €10.

- Allocation for National Treatment Purchase Fund to increase in bid to cut waiting lists.

- 100m to be made available to reduce hospital waiting lists

- €60m allocated to hire 1,000 frontline staff

Childcare and family:

- Millions of extra funding for childcare to ensure families with a gross income of up to €100,000 qualify for subsidies (not expected until "very late next year", possibly November).

- Funding for the introduction of two weeks' paid parental leave for each new parent, starting from November 1.

- Extra money for homecare help.

- Extra funding for Fair Deal nursing home scheme.

- No change to child benefit.

Tax and personal finances:

- A 2pc reduction in the tax on savings (DIRT), from 35pc to 33pc.

- No changes to income tax thresholds.

- No change to inheritance tax.

- Increase to the €1,500 tax credit given to couples where one parent stays at home to care for a child.

- Price hike for cigarettes of up to 50c.

- There will be no excise increase for alcohol due to concern about cross-Border smuggling after Brexit.

- The €13,000 entry point for the US to be raised slightly to counteract 30 cent increase to minimum wage.

- Increase to the self-employed income tax credit.

- Increase to entrepreneurs' relief on Capital Gains Tax.

Climate:

- Hike to carbon tax of between €6 per tonne which will be ring-fenced for climate action initiatives.

- Reform of motor taxation to push drivers ahead from petrol and diesel.

- 'Just Transition' fund to help sectors affected by climate change, including workers employed by Bord na Mona.

- Fuel allowance likely to be increased in bid to counterbalance carbon tax.

Education:

- Employers to be hit with 0.1pc increase to National Training Fund. This should bring in €77m extra for third level education.

Housing:

- Help-to-Buy scheme to be extended into 2020 for first-time buyers.

Rainy Day fund:

- Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe had originally promised to put €500m into the Rainy Day Fund, but on Friday decided this would not happen next year.

Pensions and social welfare:

- Christmas bonus to be paid at 100pc rate in December.

- Pensioners will not get a €5 OAP top-up in Budget 2020 as the focus shifts towards families struggling with the cost of living.

- Low-income families with teenagers who receive the Qualified Child Allowance will see an increase on the current rate of €37 a week.

- The Living Alone Allowance of €9 a week for older people is to be increased.

Brexit

- €900m total package aimed at mitigating the impact of a no-deal Brexit.

- €100m for unemployment linked to Brexit.

- Funding for 600 extra gardaí.

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