Budget 2013 and onwards: choices and consequences

Posted on October 30, 2012 by Micheál Collins

The Society of Saint Vincent DePaul launched their pre-Budget document entitled 'The Human Face of Austerity' on Thursday October 25th. At the launch I spoke about the choices government have as they compile Budget 2013 and reflected on some of the context and consequences of these choices for workers and families in Ireland.

The SVP document, available on their website here, complements much of the research I am colleagues have been engaged with over the past few years on minimum living standards for Ireland. The NERI working paper on the Cost of Work provides a good overview of that research and its findings.

The slides from the seminar are here. The key points raised were:

  • - Low incomes are more common than perceived
  • - Many people and families are living below the minimum essential standard of living
  • - Recession has hit all; but has been felt more at the bottom of the income distribution
  • - Work, either taking it up or staying in it, is a challenge for low income households
  • - There is room for tax increases in Budget 2013: both in income taxes and elsewhere
  • - It makes sense for Budget 2013 to shift the adjustment structure away from expenditure cuts
  • - Further public services cuts will hit the poor hardest as these individuals/households are the biggest users of these services.


Posted in: Government SpendingIncomeInequalityMacroeconomicsTaxation

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