Saturday 24 February 2018

Grand plans lack concrete action

Water and property charges: Labour is opposed to the introduction of property tax and says it would abolish property reliefs instead. Mr Gilmore is also opposed to water charges. A spokesman said yesterday Labour was "sceptical" about metering systems for houses because of potential costs. Public-sector pay: Mr Gilmore called for the Government to negotiate with the unions and strike an agreement on pay and reform. But when the Croke Park deal was agreed, he refused to back it. Avoiding offending anyone, he then welcomed it when it was passed. He yesterday said Labour was working on a new public-sector reform plan, which his spokesman said would be released before Christmas. Health funding: Labour leads the way in advocating a change to Universal Health Insurance for all -- a policy adopted by Fine Gael. While Fine Gael sets out how the change would be funded, Labour, 10 years on, still has not said how it would be implemented and how much it will cost. A spokesman said the document would be released before Christmas. Crime: Labour continually wants more resources for gardai, but fails to set out where it would get the money. The party also accuses the Government of failing to tackle gangland crime, yet opposed the Criminal Justice Bill last year, which was aimed at cracking down on this area. Education: Spokesman Ruairi Quinn has published a leaflet calling for, among other things, new employment programmes for teacher training graduates and a school-building programme to "meet demand". However, the proposals are not costed.

Irish Independent

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