Sunday 15 December 2019

Party policy snapshots: Day 10

Green Party Leader Eamon Ryan holding the Green Party Manifesto at its launch. Photo: Photocall /
Green Party Leader Eamon Ryan holding the Green Party Manifesto at its launch. Photo: Photocall / newsdesk

The Social Democrats have pledged to set up a new agency with responsibility for housing supply if in government

The party’s policy on affordable housing promises to link rent to inflation, reduce the social housing waiting list by 10,000 per year and significantly improve inspection regimes.

But at a press conference in Dublin, Kildare North TD Catherine Murphy admitted that the policy was not independently costed.

She told reporters that the housing crisis was a product of “decades of inaction” and there had been a “disastrous” over-reliance on private developers.

Ms Murphy said that, if in government, the Social Democrats would seek the creation of a full cabinet position with responsibility for housing.

Green Party

Legislation is required to ensure future Governments are obliged to honour the commitments that were agreed at the historic Climate Change talks in Paris last year. That’s according to the Green Party, which launched its policy document on climate change in Dublin yesterday.

The party says it will invest €30bn in renewable energy if in government.

There will also be a specific programme for managing land.

Green Party leader Eamon Ryan said his party wants to set up a “citizen trust fund” that would see €5,000 being invested for every child at the time of his or her birth.

The investment would then mature once the person turns 20 and be worth between €15,000-€20,000. The scheme is aimed at assisting young people in moving out of their family homes.

Sinn Féin

Sinn Féin claims that it will create 250,000 jobs if the party is elected to power over the next five years.

The party plans to use the “budget room available” during the next Dáil term to invest in capital projects and deliver the jobs in housing, health and education.

Economics spokesman Peadar Tóibín said: “In both our manifesto and our ‘Invest In The West’ policy document, we have committed to a series of initiatives which aims to address the historical and regional imbalance in job creation.

“We believe in jobs in Donegal, rather than Darwin, in Meath rather than Melbourne, in Tallaght rather than Toronto.”

Sinn Féin also said it would improve the situation for the arts, increasing funding to the Arts Council by 45pc over the lifetime of the next Government.

Independent Alliance

Mainstream political parties have an “attitude problem” that is hostile to non-party TDs, a leading member of the Independent Alliance has claimed.

Dublin Bay North TD Finian McGrath yesterday claimed that members of mainstream parties are guilty of “intellectual and political snobbery” in relation to forming a new coalition.

Mr McGrath was referring to recent remarks by senior Government figures that suggested they would not do business with Independents. 

Speaking at an Independent Alliance event in Dublin yesterday, Mr McGrath called on the mainstream parties to “get over themselves” and “respect the mandate of the people in all elections”.

Mr McGrath predicted that he and his colleagues will feature in any post-election negotiations that take place after February 26.

Irish Independent

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