Budget 2018 – Lack of affordable Housing Plan a Missed Opportunity – O’Keeffe


- FF influence delivered reduced pupil-teacher ratio and tripling of NTPF -

Cork East TD, Kevin O’Keeffe has said that the failure of the Government to announce an affordable housing programme for people not eligible for social housing and unable to secure a mortgage is a missed opportunity.
“This is a really bad oversight by the Government. There is an entire generation of people who earn too much and cannot be considered for social housing, but yet don’t earn enough to get a mortgage to buy their own home.
“We run the very real risk that thousands of people will never have the opportunity and benefit of owning their own home.
“This is one of the biggest concerns I have about the Budget. Of course, there have been successes – many of them at the insistence of Fianna Fáil, but the lack of affordable housing is a national emergency, and it deserved attention in today’s budget announcement.
“Fianna Fáil did secure positive movement in terms of reducing the pupil teacher ratio and tripling the funding of the National Treatment Purchase Fund to over €55 million to deal with waiting lists.
“These are two key priorities in the Confidence and Supply Arrangement that my party has with Fine Gael.
With regards Agriculture O’Keeffe added “I welcome the increased funding of €25m for the Areas of Natural Constraint (ANC) scheme in Budget 2018. It is vital that this funding is allocated to the most appropriate areas. I am however concerned about the increase in stamp duty on non-residential assets from 2% to 6% this completely over the top and will have a big impact on people trying to consolidate farm holdings”.
“We will continue to work hard to ensure that further improvements are made in the next Budget,” concluded O’Keeffe.