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Gravel and jam jars: 8 novel Budget proposals you might have missed

Pesticide levy? Tax on drinking after midnight?

YOU MAY HAVE heard something about a “Budget” happening tomorrow.

In recent days and weeks, political parties and non-profit and lobby groups have been peppering the government with their ideas and submissions.

You can read about all the major questions in the run-up to this year’s Budget here.

But setting aside USC and debt-to-GDP ratio for a moment, here are some of the more innovative ideas proposed over the last few weeks and months, which you might have missed so far.

Pesticide

8531620662_6524c44b89_z Source: Gol Monitor via Flickr

“Further revenue can be generated by bringing pesticides into the tax net, which have been proven to harm human health and wildlife.” (An Taisce).

Jam jars

9486719057_91f2cfc224_z Source: George Redgrave via Flickr

Both Ógra Fianna Fáil and Young Fine Gael want a refundable levy on cans and bottles. You pay a bit extra at the till, but if you bring them back to be recycled, you get your money back.

Ógra Fianna Fáil propose 5 cents on aluminium food and drinks cans, 10 cents on glass bottles or jars. They say setting up this levy would cost €5 million next year.

Young Fine Gael, meanwhile, are proposing: 50 cents on a large glass bottle; 20 cents on a small glass bottle, jam-jar or large plastic bottle; and 10 cents on cans and small plastic bottles.

Condoms and hard hats

3831892362_c4bd450025_z Source: Rorro Navia via Flickr

Labour Youth wants to exempt certain items from VAT, including: geriatric equipment (chairs, walking sticks); contraception; and safety equipment (seatbelts, helmets).

Gravel

14885427486_f90644dbf8_z Source: Anna B via Flickr

A levy on aggregates (sand, rocks, gravel) would “raise €80 million a year, while cutting waste and emissions,” says An Taisce.

“[It] will also significantly increase the use of recycled material and help bring rogue operators into the tax net.”

‘My two cents’

8048048692_ab7cd8a8a0_z Source: JWPhotography2012 via Flickr

“Young Fine Gael calls for the removal of the one and two cent coins from circulation in Ireland… Since 2004 Ireland has lost over €4.5 million from the minting cost of producing one cent coins.

“They…serve little practical purpose as consumers tend to hoard them rather than use them in transactions.”

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Stiff drinks

nightclub Source: Mosippy via Flickr

Ógra Fianna Fáil are proposing a “50-cent levy on all alcoholic drinks sold after midnight,” with the proceeds going towards alcohol addiction services and family-orientated events.

“Such a levy would alter the behaviour of many drinkers and help alleviate ‘binge’ drinking.”

Parking 

carpark Source: Sunapics via Flickr

An Taisce is calling for a tax on “out of town retail parking.”

“Raise over €16 million a year in levelling the playing field between out of town shops (where parking is typically free) and town centres (where parking charges are in place.)”

Against the odds

2683932406_811a923af7_o Source: Viri G via Flickr

Labour Youth wants to raise €100 million from a 5% tax on betting and gambling.

“Given that the Betting Tax was set at 9% until the term of Charlie McCreevy, we feel this raise is a modest revenue-raising option.”

Follow all our Budget 2015 coverage here>

About the author:

Dan MacGuill

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