“The pandemic is still with us.”
Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe and Public Expenditure Minister Michael McGrath said that the Government is aware of the cost of living pressures still facing many, as they announced the details of the €4.7bn budget this afternoon.
There will be “no cliff edge” facing people on the employment wage subsidy scheme. Instead the scheme will be phased out between January and the end of April 2022.
In better news, Minister Donohoe said Ireland’s post-pandemic recovery is contiuning apace:
“Due to the success of our vaccination program, restrictions were eased over the course of the second quarter, with the domestic economy recovering strongly as a result. Modified Domestic Demand, the best measure of the domestic economy, grew by almost 8.5% in the second quarter and surpassed the level immediately preceding the pandemic,” he said.
Donohoe said “there are truly exciting times ahead” in 2022 and beyond but for now the Government is “planning for the resumption of safer times”.
Here’s a handy breakdown:
- Ireland’s minimum wage will rise by 30c to €10.50. The tax cut-off will increase by €1,500 (this will put around €300 back in the pocket of the average worker – with the band increasing from €35,300 to €36,800 for single individuals and from €44,300 to €45,800 for married couples / civil partners with one earner).
- There will be “no cliff-edge” facing people on the employment wage subsidy scheme. Instead, the scheme will be phased out between January and the end of April 2022.
- The Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) will remain in place until the end of February 2022.
- An additional €3 per week will be added to the Living Alone Allowance.
- €5 increase for young jobseekers
- €5 increase for pension age recipients
- 100% Christmas Bonus for social welfare recipients.
A total of €286m has been ringfenced for economic recovery. This includes an aviation package, funding for schools and roads, hospitality and the arts as well as mental health, palliative and community care supports.
800 extra Gardaí will be put on Ireland’s streets in 2022.
Free contraception will be made available for women aged 17-25 from August 2022.
#Budget22 – free contraception for women aged 17-25. Why not for other women? And why not for men? Are women meant to be solely responsible for contraception, then?
— Mick Barry TD (@MickBarryTD) October 12, 2021
- 60,000 students will benefit from an increase in the SUSI grant and maintenance grant.
- The Non Adjacent limit will be dropped from 45km to 30km.
Working from home
- Remote workers can avail of an income tax deduction, amounting to 30% of the cost of vouched expenses, for electricity and broadband.
- The carbon tax will be increased by €7.50 this year to €41 per tonne.
- VRT to increase by up to 4% on petrol/diesel cars with high emmissions
- €5,000 in relief for battery electric vehicles until the end of 2023
“The world is burning,” said Donohoe. “And the only chance we have to control those fires is through coherent and effective policies. And that is why carbon taxation is important.
- The price of a box of cigarettes will rise again by 50c. Smokers will be paying around €15 for a pack of 20 cigarettes from midnight tonight.
- €250m will be allocated to tackle hospital waiting lists.
- €1.5bn for further resources, more doctors and nurses and hospital staff –
- Extension of free GP care for children ages six and seven
- €37m for the expansion of mental health services
- Better dental access
- The Help to Buy scheme will be continued at the current rate into 2022. A “full review of the scheme” will be carried out over the course of 2022.
- €20b will be allocated to creating 4,000 new affordable homes and 9,000 social homes in the coming five years.
Families & Schools
- Parents benefit to increase from five weeks to seven weeks
- €10 increase in the Back to School clothing allowance
- Childcare: €716m will be invested in childcare in 2022
- A Youth Travel Card will offer a 50% discount to young people aged between 19-23 across the transport sector.
- €30m for the School Transport Scheme
- €4m to extend the Hot Meals Programme in schools
- 980 extra teachers and 1165 SNAs
- The 9% VAT rate for the hospitality sector will remain in place until August 2022.
- A range of new measures for SMEs and entrepreneurs will be introduced as part of a €30m drive to incentivise employment.
- This year’s Budget will introduce a new tax credit for the digital gaming sector. The relief will take the form of a refundable corporation tax credit available to digital games development companies for qualifying expenditure incurred on the design, production and testing of a digital game. It will be available at a rate of 32% of eligible expenditure up to a maximum limit of €25 million per project and there will also be a per project minimum spend requirement of €100,000.