Speculation on what will and won’t be in the Budget has started in earnest this month. It seems inevitable that the upcoming Budget will have a few nasty income tax surprises in store, regardless of political promises made during the election. “Irish workers could easily be between €1,000 and €2,000 less well off once the Budget kicks in in two months’ time” writes Louise McBride in the Sunday Independent.
Thanks to Alan Shatter, the justice minister, we also know that the Government plans to take some money from its own pockets as well. In a heated government exchange last week the minister unexpectedly revealed he’s planning to shave 15.7%, or €340m, from his department’s budget over the next three years, according to the front page story in the Sunday Times.
If you want to save your Government some money, put down the fizzy drink and donut. Minister for health Dr James Reilly is exploring the introduction of a “fat tax” on sugary, fat or high salt foods to defray the cost of illnesses brought on by poor diet such as obesity and type 2 diabetes, says the Sunday Business Post.
In a timely piece given the fast-approaching Budget and the end of the tax year for the self-employed and those with non-PAYE incomes, The Sunday Independent details some of the ways still open of minimising tax. When the Government says there will be no increase in income tax, does anyone really believe it? Well, like the angel dancing on the head of the proverbial pin, it may be literally true but in effect chances are everyone will be paying more tax next year, whether in the form of levies, changes to reliefs or revised tax bands.
As part of the EU/IMF deal, the Government will now be forced to raise income taxes despite giving commitments to the contrary in the Programme for Government, The Sunday Business Post reports in its main front-page article.