Sinn Féin Finance spokesperson Pearse Doherty TD has described the Government’s announcement that no revenue will be going into the Rainy Day Fund as a “complete reversal in policy”, and welcomed their decision to adopt Sinn Féin’s position.
Deputy Doherty said that today’s announcement that €450 million in overruns will be again funded by unexpected tax windfalls is further sign of a Government that is underfunding public services and has no control of the public finances.
The Donegal TD said:
“Today the Minister for Finance has announced that his party and Fianna Fáil’s flagship policy of a Rainy Day Fund has finished before it even started. No money will be going into the Fund from this year’s revenue.
“Sinn Féin have repeatedly called the Rainy Day Fund out as a badly designed policy. The legislation that underpinned the fund allowed it to be used only in exceptional circumstances and to bail out the banks.
“I welcome the Minister’s decision today to adopt the Sinn Féin position on the fund.
“Today’s news that the Minister will be funding €450 million worth of supplementary estimates through corporation tax revenue is yet more evidence that this Government has no control of the public finances.
“Year after year the Government underprovide for our public services, and then announces overruns at each year’s end.
“This makes a mockery of the budgetary process and is a dangerous way to manage our public finances.
“We have seen no improvement in our public services. At the same time their funding is becoming increasingly reliant on unsustainable corporation tax revenue rather than a sustainable tax base.
“At this stage it is difficult to believe any forecasts that come from this Government.
“Brexit will influence this Budget but it shouldn’t define it. Our public finances can be protected while delivering real results for the challenges our people face. But only if the right choices are made.
“Next week’s budget is set to be another failure by Fine Gael to and Fianna Fáil to give workers and families a break.”