Economy

Government desperate to strike blows against mass non-payment of household tax in advance of water meter installation and property tax legislation

Responding to the reappearance of Minister Hogan after an absence that happened to coincide precisely with the duration of the fiscal compact referendum campaign as well as to the threats against non-payers of the Household Tax that have emanated from his office Socialist Party TD for Dublin North and United Left Alliance Environment and Local Government spokesperson Clare Daly said:

“Non payment of the household tax has remained solid since the passing of the government deadline on 31st March with negligible registrations since that time. Questions put to Minister Hogan reveal that around one tenth of 940,000 properties (representing half of the true government target figure of 1.85 million not 1.6 million as is falsely claimed by government and media elements) were multiple registrations which suggests that a decisive majority of liable individuals remain in the non-payment camp.

“The government recognise that the beginning of the septic tank registration process next month, water meter installation in October and the drafting of the legislation for the property tax later this year will all provide a fresh impetus to the CAHWT. Therefore the threat of ‘compliance letters’ to non paying households in the coming weeks and months should be seen as a desperate measure by the government to try diminish the scale of non-payment in order to dampen a storm of protest that will meet the upcoming measures which all point in the direction of household bills averaging €1,000 of which the campaign has correctly warned all along.

“As with the successful campaign against the water tax in the 1990s every piece of threatening correspondence and court action will be met with a round of public meetings, mass newsletter distribution and protests as well legal defence measures. Such will be the scale of revolt Minister Hogan will wish he stayed in hiding!”

Economy

United Left Alliance
Press Statement June 1 2012

ULA says people were bullied into accepting Austerity Treaty
Resistance to austerity will continue

In a statement today the ULA said the people were bullied into voting yes. The Government did not put up any good arguments in support of this treaty. They agreed a blackmail clause with the EU and then used it to bully the people. They said we had no choice even though they took an active part in agreeing to link the treaty with access to funding in the future. Many of those who voted yes did so reluctantly.

Despite the campaign of fear, huge numbers voted against the treaty. Across the country those most affected by austerity have said no and sent a message, particularly to Labour, that they have had enough of austerity. It is now clear that Labour’s way is Frankfurt’s way. Labour will continue to put the boot into ordinary people to pay for the debts of bankers and developers. Labour has no mandate from its supporters to implement austerity.

The ULA is confident that the resistance to austerity in Ireland and Europe will deepen in the next few months. The promise of government that the treaty will bring stability is false. There will be no stability. The treaty does not offer a way out of the economic crises. It will make it worse by institutionalising austerity across Europe.

We will continue to campaign and mobilise against austerity. We will continue to demand the scrapping of the Household Tax and other policies which impose the burden of bank debt on working people. The ULA will continue to offer a real alternative to the failed policies of austerity.

Economy

Conditions laid down by union in return for ‘yes’ vote have not been met

SIPTU member and Socialist Party/United Left Alliance TD for Dublin North, Clare Daly has called on SIPTU General President to come out on behalf of the union and call for a No vote in tomorrow’s austerity treaty referendum

“A ‘No’ vote call from SIPTU General President is the only logical step given that the €10 billion investment guarantee they demanded from the government in return for advocating a ‘Yes’ vote has not been delivered.

“The truth of the matter is that such a commitment was never going to be forthcoming from the government and the position the SIPTU leadership took was a device to avoid calling for ‘No’ vote alongside Mandate, TEEU, CPSU, Unite, TSSA and IWU who stood with the European Trade Union Confederation in opposing this deal.

“Again SIPTU are pulling their punches from the point of view of representing the interests of their members because of their ties to the Labour Party. How much more austerity must be shoved down our throats from this government before SIPTU cease handing over thousands of members money to the Labour Party which has proven itself a more than willing accomplice in the cuts agenda.”

Transport Tourism and Sport

Nine year rule needs to be scrapped in favour of a fair road worthiness test

“The nine year rule being applied to cars being driven as taxis is forcing full time career taxi drivers out of the trade. Time and again taxi drivers are telling me that they cannot access credit to purchase new cars but have spent what money they have to keep their existing cars road worthy.

“The nine year rule does not apply to drivers whose licence number is below 45,000 which is a bizarre and arbitrary cut off. Anomalous situations can arise now where cars of greater years and greater miles on the clock and are road worthy can remain on the streets than younger cars who happen to be over nine years.

“I call on the Minister for Transport to replace the nine year rule with a fair road worthiness test. This is only one part of a solution of a wider package of necessary and radical reforms to save the taxi trade which me and my United Left Alliance colleagues will be advocating.”