Tax credit in pipeline for low income earners in Budget

Tax credit in pipeline for low income earners in Budget

The Government looks set to announce new relief measures to cut water bills in tomorrow's Budget.

According to the Irish Independent, the Finance Minister will unveil tax and welfare changes to ease the burden of the charge on low and middle income families.

It is understood the package was agreed before Saturday's protest in Dublin which saw tens of thousands of people turn out to call for the charges to be scrapped.

According to the Irish Times, low and middle income earners will also see a cut in their rate of Universal Social Charge.

Michael Noonan delivers his Budget speech tomorrow and there are mounting reports that he will announce measures to ease the impact of water charges.

A relief package is being prepared which will see a water-related tax refund of up to €100 for low income families - as well changes to allow more people to qualify for welfare payments that offset the new charges.

Tens of thousands protested against the levy in Dublin on Saturday, while two anti water-charge candidates were elected in the Dáil by-elections, Paul Murphy in Dublin South West and Michael Fitzmaurice in Roscommon South Leitrim.

The Government will be hoping to prevent further public backlash with its new tax relief strategy.

It will raise the level at which the Universal Social Charge is applied to low and middle income earners, cutting the higher rate of income tax from 41% to 40%, and increasing the threshold at which the higher rate is payable by €1,000 to €33,800.

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