Bruton, John

Wednesday, 18 June 1986

Dáil Eireann Debate
Vol. 368 No. 2

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Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - Dundalk Lorry Parking Area.

There is no provision in Vote 10, Office of Public Works and Buildings, for the carrying out of this work in 1986. The provision of funds for the work in 1987 will be considered in the context of the...More Button

Yes.More Button

Yes.More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - State Domestic Borrowing.

In accordance with the usual practice the figures for Exchequer borrowing in the domestic market will be released in conjunction with the Exchequer returns for end-June 1986. The Exchequer's normal bo...More Button

This question is not concerned with realignment. It is concerned with total borrowing by the State on the domestic market. Therefore, that supplementary question does not arise.More Button

Domestic borrowing by the Government in the first half of this year has had no significant effect on interest rates.More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - Airport Customs Service and Checks.

I am satisfied that a proper and effective customs service and adequate customs checking procedures operate at the three main airports and at other licensed aerodromes.More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - New Army Headquarters.

The Minister of State is dealing with this question. I have not got it.More Button

Can it be postponed until later?More Button

Can it be adjourned?More Button

I now have the answer. A considerable amount of work was necessary to enable the contract documents previously prepared in respect of the project to be amended to comply with up-dated conditions of co...More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - EC Regulation Funding.

I propose to take Questions Nos. 5 and 16 together. Drafting of a programme as required by Regulation No. 3637/85 is under way, and discussions have been taking place with the Commission on the basis ...More Button

The Deputy will realise that it involves very substantial expenditure of funds involving a significant contribution by the Exchequer. Therefore, there is a considerable need to ensure that adequate c...More Button

I have no responsibility for advertisements placed by Bord Gáis Éireann.More Button

The Council regulation in question was only adopted in December 1985 which is not that long ago considering that one is dealing with very large capital projects. The work is continuing at present on ...More Button

No. It depends on being able to come forward with satisfactory answers to questions posed by the Commission who, after all, have to approve the allocation of funds. They have to be satisfied that as...More Button

I would make two comments on that. First of all, it is a separate question and, secondly, it is based on extremely doubtful if not false hypotheses.More Button

The question of an integrated programme is a separate matter.More Button

We do not accept the supposition.More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - Custom Clearance Facilities.

It is not a function of the Minister for Finance or of the Revenue Commissioners to establish depots for the inland clearance of goods. The Revenue Commissioners, however, are empowered to approve pla...More Button

There are 47 authorised consignees' premises in the Dublin area at present. Customs entries for goods delivered to these premises are accepted from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday to Friday, and on Saturday...More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - Information for Revenue Commissioners.

The Revenue Commissioners are responsible for implementing a very extensive body of tax legislation in relation to over one million subjects within the charge to tax under a number of tax heads. The ...More Button

The constitutional position is quite different in Great Britain; they do not have a written Constitution. Therefore I understand that it is easier for the Inland Revenue in England to publish lists of...More Button

I can assure the Deputy that the Chairman of the Revenue Commissioners is governed, as we all are, by the provisions of law in this country and by the provisions of the Constitution. It is not simply...More Button

—— well, case law in regard to taxation — to add the necessary rider to satisfy the Deputy. Case law in regard to taxation from another jurisdiction would not be an appropriate subject for publicati...More Button

The only comment I would make on that is that when the Deputy's party were last in office they increased the share of total taxation taken from the PAYE sector from 30 per cent to 34 per cent.More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - Divorce Referendum Cost.

On the basis of the costs of previous referenda and taking into account present cost levels, I estimate that the cost of the Divorce Referendum will be of the order of £1 million.More Button

No, I could not do that at this point. The Deputy asked the overall cost. That is all that I have. Basically it is a projection of past costs, using experience and intervening inflation.More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - Estimated Current Budget Deficit, 1986.

The current budget deficit for the first three months of the year was £641 million, which was in line with budget day expectations. The deficit for the first six months will be disclosed in accordanc...More Button

I just said that the deficit for the first six months will be disclosed in accordance with normal practice on the publication of the end June returns. I indicated that, as the House is already aware,...More Button

I am aware of the budget deficit projections contained in the national plan, Building on Reality. I am also aware that the previous Minister for Finance explained, in dealing with his most recent bud...More Button

The Government have made a statement in regard to this matter stating their intentions for each of the intervening years and for 1987. It is fair to say that the deficit for 1986 is not as far along ...More Button

Deputy O'Kennedy is asking me to announce my 1987 budget. I do not propose to do that. As far as 1986 is concerned, I have already answered the question. The only thing I would wish to add in respon...More Button

I was talking about 1987 in response to Deputy Brennan's question.More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - VAT Rate on Publications.

I presume that in speaking of the VAT rate on publications, the Deputy is referring to magazines and periodicals and not newspapers which already attract a low rate of VAT. I am aware of the case tha...More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - Interest on Loans to Farmers.

The Central Bank have primary responsibility for interest rate policy. Following the easing of the upward pressures on interest rates experienced in the early part of the year, significant reductions...More Button

I have agreed on a number of occasions in the House with Deputies who have suggested that our interest rates at the moment are undersirably high from the point of view of the productive sector. I ha...More Button

As the Deputy will be aware, real and high interest rates are a feature all over Europe and all over the world at present. It is not something that is happening only in Ireland. However, it is in ma...More Button

That is precisely why the Government decided to introduce a scheme whereby £135 million worth of money can be borrowed from a country where interest rates are lower on an exchange risk guaranteed basi...More Button

I am delighted that the party opposite have recognised that there is a connection between borrowing by the Government and high interest rates. This is something their Leader did not seem to realise w...More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - Tax Rebate.

The taxpayer has claimed a repayment of income tax for the years 1984-85 and 1985-86 and the question of his entitlement to a repayment falls to be determined by way of reviews of his liabilities for ...More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - EC VAT Directive.

The revised proposals of the EC Commission for a 16th VAT Directive are currently under examination in my Department. Discussions have also been initiated with interested parties in industry. While...More Button

I am sure the Deputy is aware that the harmonisation of rates will cause us problems——More Button

—— in that we are one of only two countries in the EC that zero rates food. I do not necessarily see that as an immediate solution to any problem that might arise under the 16th Directive. The proble...More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - VAT Rating of Foodstuffs.

It is currently estimated that the respective full year gains from applying VAT at 5 and 10 per cent to foodstuffs, which is taken to mean zerorated food and drink for human consumption, are £98 milli...More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - Secret Service Budget.

The nature of Secret Service payments is such that to subject them to normal Dáil scrutiny would obviously defeat the whole object of the expenditure. That is why Dáil Éireann, since the foundation o...More Button

The Comptroller and Auditor General, as the Deputy will be aware, exercises his functions with great care. As I said in my reply, there are strict accounting and certifying procedures, which are acce...More Button

I suppose that is in the nature of things. We cannot examine this Vote in the same way as other Votes because particular procedures are laid down which are operated by responsible officers. I have n...More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - Oil Prices.

The current working assumption of international forecasting agencies, including the OECD, is that crude oil prices will remain at about $15 per barrel from the middle of this year. On this basis, and ...More Button

I do not know what the Deputy means by that question. In the natural course of events the drop in prices will be available to those using oil. It will be passed on through the economy to the consume...More Button

I presume the Deputy is not inferring we should spend more Government money in order to accentuate the benefit.More Button

If he is saying we should try to reduce Government expenditure to take account of the fact that the services being bought by the Government can be bought at a lower price because of the fall in oil pr...More Button

The use of that kind of simplistic oratory, which means absolutely nothing, is of no benefit to economic debate here.More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - Tax Projections.

Tax receipts so far this year give no reason to indicate that the budget estimate for tax revenue will not, in broad terms, be achieved. On this basis, and using the latest estimate for GNP, total ta...More Button

There is a substantial inflation element built into the figures quoted by the Deputy. Obviously, £6 billion now is worth much less than the same amount was worth five years ago because of inflation. ...More Button

I agree our tax burden is far too high. We are collecting too much tax from the people under all headings. However, to reduce it requires reductions in expenditure. Obviously, we cannot borrow any m...More Button

I have to tell the Deputy there is no short cut to low tax rates. That can only be done by taking the necessary difficult decisions to reduce expenditure. All of the shades of Opposition on that sid...More Button

There is no short cut to low taxation. It can only be achieved by taking difficult decisions.More Button

It is plain silly.More Button

The Deputy has not a clue what he would do. He is taking one item, taxations, and ignoring what causes it, namely, expenditure. That might lead to applause for the Deputy in certain assemblies other...More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - Employment Targets.

The Government aimed, in the national plan Building on Reality, 1985-1987 to create the conditions in which employment would be more readily created and sustained. On the basis of certain assumptions...More Button

I will not comment on the Deputy's figures because this question does not deal with emigration. If the Deputy wanted information about emigration he should have asked a question about it rather than ...More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - GNP Growth.

The latest projections indicate that, provided oil prices and exchange rates remain stable at about their present level, GNP should grow by about 2½ per cent in real terms in 1986. However, real GDP s...More Button

Ceisteanna — Questions. Oral Answers. - Exchequer Foreign Debt.

The Exchequer's foreign debt was IR£5,290 million at the end of 1982 and IR£8,441 million at the end of 1985. As indicated in the national plan, the Government's policy objective is to stabilise the E...More Button

A large part of the gross foreign borrowing undertaken by the State is to re-finance existing loans when they come up for renewal——More Button

—— or when the Government choose to do so. The actual position is——More Button

—— that net new foreign borrowing by the State was 9.3 per cent of GNP in 1982 and has been reduced in 1985 to 5.2 per cent, virtually halving the amount of new foreign borrowing undertaken by the Sta...More Button

Written Answers. - Border Trading Village.

I am aware of the village referred to by the Deputy. The Revenue Commissioners are also aware of it and are constantly vigilant in order to ensure that the enforcement of the customs regulations is c...More Button

Written Answers. - Wealth Tax Receipts.

Total receipts under the Wealth Tax Act, 1975, up to 31 December 1985, amounted to £20,536,081. The estimated full year yield from the re-introduction of wealth tax would be of the order of £10 milli...More Button

Written Answers. - VAT on Confectionery.

Confectionery items, including biscuits, cakes and other flour confectionery as well as chocolates, sweets and sugar confectionery, attract VAT at the standard rate of 25 per cent. I have no plans to...More Button

Written Answers. - Farm Holdings Classification.

By end-May 1986 the Farm Classification Office had determined the adjusted acreage of 2,340 farm holdings. It is estimated that a total of 2,900 holdings will have been assessed by 1 September 1986. ...More Button

Written Answers. - EC Regional Fund Receipts.

Ireland's receipts from the European Regional Development Fund in 1985 amounted to IR£76.013 million. The expected level of receipts in 1986 is IR£80 million.More Button

Written Answers. - Tax Relief on VHI Premiums.

I have no plans at present to change existing arrangements for income tax relief on health insurance premiums. The relief will, of course, fall to be kept under review as part of the budgetary proces...More Button

Written Answers. - Income Tax Burden.

I am. There are various ways of measuring the burden of taxation. Under the terms of the National Plan, Building on Reality, the Government are committed to adjust tax bands and allowances each year...More Button

Written Answers. - Meath Flooding.

The Commissioners of Public Works cannot accept that their drainage operations on this river caused or aggravated a flooding problem at the property in question. Accordingly, there are no plans to un...More Button

Written Answers. - Special Tax Allowance.

I would not consider it desirable to make any special provision in this matter relating to marriage in the Income Tax Acts. Provisions regarding the status of common law spouses should be contained in...More Button

Written Answers. - Howth (Dublin) Harbour.

Work on the installation of the shunting equipment is in progress and is expected to be completed in about two months. Trollies are already available and in use at Howth harbour. Additional trollies...More Button

Written Answers. - Income Tax Rebate.

I have been advised by the Revenue Commissioners that, owing to a regrettable oversight, the relevant cheque was not issued to the taxpayer. Arrangements have now been made for the issue of the chequ...More Button

Written Answers. - Semi-State Bodies' Annual Reports.

The following State bodies which are under the aegis of the Minister for Finance published their 1985 annual reports on the following dates:More Button

Written Answers. - Farm Holdings Classification.

By end-May 1986, the latest date for which figures are available, the staff of the farm classification office had inspected and determined the adjusted acreage of 2,336 farm holdings covering an area ...More Button

Written Answers. - Maigue (Limerick) Drainage Scheme.

Requests for numerous extensions to the Maigue Catchment Drainage Scheme in County Limerick have been examined by the Commissioners of Public Works since the scheme was commenced in 1973. If the Depu...More Button

Written Answers. - Blackwater (Monaghan) Drainage Scheme.

Under the Blackwater (Monaghan) Catchment Drainage Scheme, it is proposed to provide footbridges at these locations in order to maintain the existing pedestrian facilities. The question of providing...More Button

Written Answers. - Maigue (Limerick) Drainage Scheme.

The construction phase of works on the Maigue Arterial Drainage Scheme is expected to end on 4 July 1986. At present there are 120 workers employed on the scheme. Two of these are due to retire on g...More Button


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