Fine Gael’s commitment to increase the threshold for the top rate of tax to €50,000 over the next five budgets has been roundly welcomed by Cllr. John Paul O’Shea, North Cork Fine Gael Councilor and Cork North West General Election candidate.
Cllr O’Shea said the announcement by An Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar TD, at the party’s Ard Fheis last weekend highlights Fine Gael’s responsible approach to growing the economy and giving back to middle-income earners in Ireland.
During his leaders’ address at the Citywest Hotel in Dublin on Saturday, Taoiseach Varadkar committed to increase the point which people pay the top rate of tax to €50,000 for a single person and €100,000 for a two-income married couple. Currently, a single person pays the top rate of tax at just over €35,000. The Government also plan to introduce family benefits such as two weeks of extra paid parental leave for both parents next year.
Cllr O’Shea said the reckless economic mismanagement of the past was unfair to all, which resulted in hundreds of thousands of jobs lost, public services slashed and taxes hiked. While Fine Gael has managed to reverse much of that unfairness, he said, some elements persist. For example, people on average incomes in Ireland pay the highest rate of tax. The average full-time income is almost €46,000 but in Ireland we pay the top rate of tax on just over €35,000.
“This discourages parents from returning to the workforce, discourages people who emigrated from coming home, and makes it harder to attract good jobs and talent to Ireland,” Cllr O’Shea said. “The announcement by An Taoiseach at the Ard Fheis will be welcome news to people and families right across North Cork and the whole of the country. I think it shows a responsible approach to government and it will allow hard-working people to keep more of the money they earned.”