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Budget 2013

Taxes on texts and junk food proposed by Social Justice Ireland

Social Justice Ireland that a €3.5bn budget adjustment can be achieved without cutting social welfare or child benefit.

AN ALTERNATIVE BUDGET proposed by Social Justice Ireland (SJI) has put forward ideas for the implementation of taxes on text messages and junk food which will go towards achieving a €3.5 billion adjustment next year.

SJI says that the current approach to resolving Ireland’s deficit issues is protecting the rich at the expense of the rest of the population and proposes to take €3.5 billion out of the economy – as the government is proposing to do – through increasing taxes and reducing revenue by a ratio of 2:1.

The government proposes to reduce expenditure by €2.25 billion while raising revenue through taxation measures amounting to €1.25 billion in December’s budget.

Alternatively, SJI says that it would eliminate the household charge and introduced a site value tax which would be based on the value of the site that a property is built on as opposed to the property itself which would raise €500 million.

The Universal Social Charge (USC) would be extended to tax three per cent of all incomes over €10,000 and a levy of 2.5 per cent would be introduced on all corporate profits next year, yielding €750 million.

The tax break on pension contributions would be standard-rated to yield income of €700 million.

A two per cent tax on salt, alcohol, sugar and trans fats would yield €15 million while a tax of one third of a one cent on each text message sent through mobile phones would yield €40 million in revenue, according to SJI.

Expenditure cuts will be targeted through an income contingent loan scheme for third level students, existing proposed health sector savings, and pay bill savings achieved through the Croke Park Agreement.

Read: Think-tank says Irish economy is ‘bouncing along the bottom’

Read:  Fianna Fáil to table city council motion opposing property tax

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