Posts in the "Government Spending" category

NERI Post Budget Seminar

Posted on October 23, 2014

Post Budget Seminar 2015 - NERI post Budget seminar
NERI post Budget seminar

The October NERI seminar took place yesterday afternoon in the INTO Learning Centre. Michelle Murphy (Social Justice Ireland), Cormac Staunton (TASC) and Michael Taft (UNITE) provided on overview of the impact of the Budget 2015 with a focus on changes to system of income tax and the prospects for economic growth and employment over the coming years. 

Response to Budget 2015

Links to the slides used by each presenter can be found here:

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Permanent link | Categories: Government SpendingIncomeInvestmentMacroeconomics

Overview of Budget 2015

Posted on October 16, 2014 by Tom McDonnell

Tom McDonnell profile

There are some positive elements to the Budget but overall it represents a major missed opportunity.

The economics behind Budget 2015 are shaky to say the least. An expansionary budget based on tax cuts for the better off fails the economic best practice test and also fails the equity test. The Budget 2015 tax changes are regressive with single earners on €70,000 benefiting by four times as much as minimum wage earners from the direct tax changes. Taking into account the water charges the ESRI have confirmed that poorer households will lose out from Budget 2015 while richer households will gain.

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Permanent link | Categories: Government SpendingMacroeconomicsTaxation

Budget 2015 and Public Investment in Social Housing

Posted on October 15, 2014 by Daragh McCarthy


There are over 90,000 people on the waiting list for social housing.  This level of demand for a basic need required a substantial investment in housing, and, in this regard, Budget 2015 was a significant first step. The headline investment of €2.2 billion over the coming three years to provide 10,000 social housing units will make a difference.

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Permanent link | Categories: Government SpendingInvestmentJobs

Uncertainty and Economic Recovery

Posted on July 14, 2014 by Micheál Collins

Slowly, the Irish economy is recovering; very slowly! Over the weekend, I and other economists contributed to a article (see here) on the two-speed nature of the recovery. While the exchequers finances are improving (lower unemployment, higher employment, some increased spending, expenditure cuts and new taxes) the impact on the ground is very different. For those returning to work there have been significant, overdue and welcome benefits from recovery while for those already working the challenges of continuing to absorb further austerity has not dissipated.

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Permanent link | Categories: Government SpendingInvestmentMacroeconomicsTaxation

Spending on health and the cost of providing universal care

Posted on July 05, 2014 by Daragh McCarthy


The recent release of OECD data external link on health care has highlighted the low level of expenditure on health in Ireland. As noted in the Irish Times external link, the state spent less on health than any other country in Western Europe during 2012. In this blog I attempt to put this stark fact into the context of spending on healthcare in recent years and briefly highlight some of the costs associated with funding a single tier system through a compulsory private insurance model.

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Permanent link | Categories: Government Spending

Some data on public sector pensions in the Republic of Ireland

Posted on June 08, 2014 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI - Tom Healy, Director NERI
Tom Healy, Director NERI

The Government in the Republic of Ireland spends just over €3 billion a year on pensions to retired public servants (or their spouses). This represents approximately 2% of GDP, 6% of total ‘voted’ public expenditure or 16% of the total public service payroll. These payments are made to persons who had worked as civil servants, teachers, nurses, guards, local authority staff, health service staff etc. The topic of pensions, in general, and public service pensions in particular, attracts some attention – sometimes adverse.  It would be useful, as a starting point, to know what profile of pension payments there is at the current time.

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Permanent link | Categories: Government SpendingWages

Tábhacht Postanna, Pá, Tithe

Posted on June 03, 2014 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI - Tom Healy, Director NERI
Tom Healy, Director NERI

An príomh rud atá in easnamh sa tír seo faoi láthair ná dóchas – dóchas atá bunaithe ar fhírinní agus ar fhéidireachtaí na sochaí.

Tá teipeadh le straitéis na déine san Eoraip. Tá an tuarascáil is nua ag an gcomissiún Eorpach  Ní thugann an cháipéis aon tuarthaí nua dóchas agus athrú bunúsach do phobal na hEorpa. Níl an ráiteas bunaithe ar na fíricí ó thaobh dí fhostaíocht, caiteachas cúrsaí sláinnte. Níl le hofráil ach níos mó den pholasaí atá ag déanamh scrios don Eoraip cheana féin. Luaigh siad caiteachas poiblí ar sláinnte – go bhfuil sé thar an mean don AE. Níl sé seo fíor mar tá an figiúr seo bunaithe are oll-Ioncaim náisiúnta cé n’úsáidtearr GDP nó OTI ag an gcomisiún I gcónaí chun comparáidí a dhéanamh.

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Permanent link | Categories: Government SpendingInvestmentTaxationWages

Jobs, Wages, Homes

Posted on May 30, 2014 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI - Tom Healy, Director NERI
Tom Healy, Director NERI

Following 6 years of declining or stagnant living standards many people are wondering what the future holds. The gathering crisis of accommodation and social housing has caught many by surprise. While there has been a welcome pick up in employment and a very modest fall in unemployment these changes are tentative and it remains to be seen how fast we can move towards single-digit unemployment figures. Under-employment, unemployment, precariousness and poor-quality work experience are widespread and they impact on young people in particular.

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Permanent link | Categories: Government SpendingInvestmentJobsTaxationWages

Universal Private Health Insurance: Terms & Conditions will apply

Posted on May 17, 2014 by Tom Healy

Tom Healy, Director NERI - Tom Healy, Director NERI
Tom Healy, Director NERI

Recently the Government in the Republic of Ireland issued a White Paper on Universal Health Insurance. In it, the Government states: ‘it has set out an ambitious plan for the most far-reaching and fundamental reform of our health system since the foundation of the State.’ It describes the proposed reform of the health service as involving an end to the current ‘deeply unfair and highly inefficient’ two-tier health system. It promises a single-tier health system which:

  • delivers proactive, integrated care at the lowest level of complexity that is safe; timely, efficient and as close to home as possible;
  • provides equal access based on need rather than ability to pay;
  • drives the wider ‘whole of Government’ approach to health in all policies, and
  • delivers true value for the Irish people.

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Permanent link | Categories: Government SpendingInequalityTaxation

Time to think about the type of Ireland we want to live in

Posted on May 14, 2014 by Micheál Collins

The impact of the various austerity measures over recent years has been, and continues to be, felt by families in every corner of the country. Whether it is pay, public services or social welfare; all measures point towards a drop in living standards that has been hard felt. Recent data from the CSO quantified the average decrease in income for households since 2008 at 14%; of course it has been much more difficult for households on mid-to-low incomes to absorb this decrease.

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Permanent link | Categories: GenderGovernment SpendingIncomeMacroeconomicsTaxation

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