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readers panel

Readers’ panel: Married with children

Fintan Hynes thinks that the universal cut to the children’s allowance was unfair. He also thinks that the increase in car tax is going to make it a lot more difficult for couples who need to run two cars.

FINTAN HYNES IS married and has a daughter, aged three. He works in the private sector as a software engineer. His wife also works full-time. Ahead of the Budget, he was worried that changing tax rates and the impact it could have on people’s desire to work longer hours.

My attitude to this budget (and any of these “austerity” budgets) has been that I don’t mind paying a little bit extra to the state and getting a bit less back. Our system of income versus expenditure seems to be fundamentally broken and of course there is going to be a re-balancing.

I’d prefer to pay some extra tax through indirect or consumption-based taxes rather than out of my pay packet, however.

With that in mind I’m happy that there has been no change to the tax rates or bands, PRSI exemption removal aside.

However, I’m disappointed with the crude measure of a universal Children’s Allowance cut. This hits poorer families much harder than people that don’t need the payment. I can’t see why there would be any objection to making this payment taxable income.

The increase in car tax seems like it’s going to be very significant for a household that needs to run two cars (i.e. both parents living in the country, both working).

The wine is an odd one as I think this is already taxed higher than other alcohol and I don’t know why wine in particular is being singled out. But I don’t think it’s a big deal.

I agree with the pension fund reforms. Once a pension hits a certain point it becomes a significant asset and should be taxed as such.

Property tax is no surprise and the rate seems to have been known weeks ago but I would have expected to see a more comprehensive list of exemptions to be honest.

All in all what I’ve seen so far hasn’t been that surprising. Most of it seems to have been leaked ahead of time anyway.

I would be a lot more concerned about where the breakdown in €2.25 billion in expenditure cuts is going to be. This is where the real pain and controversy will come from.

Read the verdict from other readers on’s panel>

Readers’ Panel Part One: What are you expecting from Budget 2013? >

Readers’ Panel Part Two: What are you expecting from Budget 2013? >

Read more:’s coverage of all the latest news from Budget 2013 >

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