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Ministers to keep €3,500 laundry allowance, Government confirms

Michael Noonan said he had no plans to remove the perk, which can be claimed as a tax refund by ministers who stay in hotels.

Image: Anna Oates via Flickr

GOVERNMENT MINISTERS WILL keep a controversial €3,500 tax refund for having their clothes laundered, Michael Noonan has confirmed.

Noonan said there were no plans to remove or alter the unvouched cleaning allowance, which applies to ministers who stay in hotels while attending the Dáil, saying:

I do not intend to abolish the dual abode allowance at this time or to make changes to its operation.

The allowance sparked controversy in November, when it was revealed in response to a parliamentary question from Sinn Féin’s Pearse Doherty.

At the time Noonan said while ministers did not have to provide receipts to claim the tax refund, they could still be subject to checks by the Revenue Commissioners.

Last week he told Labour’s Robert Dowds that only ministers representing areas outside Dublin can claim the perk, which is part of the dual abode allowance enabling them to maintain a second residence in the capital. Noonan added:

It should be noted that it is only where an office holder uses hotel or guesthouse accommodation as his/her second residence that any costs in relation to laundry can be allowed.

More: Ministers can claim €3,500 tax refund for laundry expenses>

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Michael Freeman

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