Northern Ireland Finances

in N. Ireland
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CottaCotta Forumite
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I sometimes wonder if our politicians have any grasp of finances and how to use taxpayers money in an effective manner.


Last week the Alliance party proposed the introduction of water charges and prescription costs. I'm not completely against prescription charges but feel it's unfair to say NI residents do not pay for their water as some of the rates we pay go towards water. It is also unreasonable to expect water charges to be introduced without at least a long term vision and before efficiencies are made within the water department.


Today Naomi Long has slammed NI MPs who votes against taking in additional immigrants stating that she would be more than happy with her taxes going towards the additional charges. It seems the Alliance party are very much in favour of increased taxes without putting a framework in place.


I'm only highlighting the Alliance party at present, however I'm sure there are plenty of examples from other parties ofequally un-costed Financial policies.


This leads me to the point, how much longer can NI rumble on like this before we're in real financial difficulty?
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Replies

  • edited 27 April 2016 at 2:22PM
    ballyblackballyblack Forumite
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    edited 27 April 2016 at 2:22PM
    Free prescription charges are just crazy.

    A nominal charge say £2 for everybody would guard against misuse which is rife at the moment

    Pay by your 'Means' would only add to admin costs and fraud


    .
  • qwert_yuiopqwert_yuiop Forumite
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    It's quite interesting how many people don't have to pay any income tax these days, now that the threshold is well over £10,000 and the various concessions for children etc leave you with no liability at all. It's all in today's daily telegraph ( free website) with the heartbreaking spin that the rich have to pay so much. Oh dear.

    As for refugees from Syria, it seems only a third of them are actually refugees from Syria. The backlash is well underway - a right wing anti immigration party has just won the austrian presidency. By the time we get round to taking refugees, Europe will be expelling them.
    “What means that trump?” Timon of Athens by William Shakespeare
  • oldhandoldhand Forumite
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    We have many similar problems here as the mainland UK. There are many thousands on the housing waiting list with many families having been waiting years without any idea of when or if they will be housed.An added difficulty here is that if a house becomes available sometimes the family next in line for it are unable to accept it due to the "area " it is in.
    A small charge as was suggested for prescriptions would I think be a very good idea if for no other reason than it may reduce the number of people who just dont feel they have seen a doctor unless they come away with a prescription in their hands.
    Regarding water charges we already pay toward that in our rates but if the UK government had its way what little is left of the waterservice (formerly DOE) would be privatised with the same results as happened in the UK with the utilities turned over to the highest bidders who surprisingly seemed in many cases to have directors who were former MPs or serving lords on their boards.
    The alliance party always seem to me at least to be fence sitters ready to jump onto whatever bandwagon is in vogue at the time,which may help to explain why even though few vote for them at elections they tend to make up the headcount when it comes to sitting on the various useless Quangos.
    It appears helpful to have a cherryvalley or malone address when applying for those.
    Perhaps some of the Alliance party or any other party for that matter who advocate taking more and more refugees were to offer to house them people would have more faith in their preeching to others??
  • qwert_yuiopqwert_yuiop Forumite
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    I can't see water charges being brought in for all here following the bother they've had introducing them down south. They'll just add another bit to the rates bills.

    Any sign of the long awaited removal of the rates cap yet?
    “What means that trump?” Timon of Athens by William Shakespeare
  • MilkoMilko Forumite
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    Just throwing this one out there as food for thought ...


    I've recently just employed a guy who due to a relationship breakdown has recently returned from Spain where he lived for 14yrs. Born & bread here from early 70's, he & his partner emigrated. He has been told he is not allowed either housing benefit or dole money etc... for 3 months from his return & he must sit a residency test to become a British citizen again. Thankfully he no longer will require dole money due to his employment but for the last couple of months he's had nothing.
    Yesterday, 80 odd refuges landed in Belfast to newly furnished homes & immediate benefits.
    I'd also like to point out, that I often have Polish, Latvian, Bulgarian contractors working with me so I fully understand the need for allowing immigration but we must look after our own in the same context.
    This government / institution must change & soon !
  • qwert_yuiopqwert_yuiop Forumite
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    That bit about the residency test is not correct.
    “What means that trump?” Timon of Athens by William Shakespeare
  • suki1964suki1964 Forumite
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    I can't see water charges being brought in for all here following the bother they've had introducing them down south. They'll just add another bit to the rates bills.

    Any sign of the long awaited removal of the rates cap yet?

    I think the water charges are closer then we think

    I do market research and a lot of the questions Ive had to ask this year have been about water charges and smart meters
  • qwert_yuiopqwert_yuiop Forumite
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    There seems to be some difficulty getting the southerners to pay for their water.
    “What means that trump?” Timon of Athens by William Shakespeare
  • guirimanguiriman Forumite
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    At least one party has finally broken ranks on the water charges issue, if I remember correctly what was reported when this first came to light the amount contributed by rates is not even enough to maintain the current system, never mind improve it. Putting on a small charge (say £5 a household per annum, or whatever that is a %) and then ringfencing that money specifically to address leaks in the water mains (or other inefficiency if it pays back quicker) would be minimal pain for all but at least make a start to improving the situation. The longer this particular can is kicked down the road the worse it will be when it finally gets dealt with.

    Having said that the Alliance can say whatever they like since the chances of them having any influence to implement their policies is zero.
  • BatCatBatCat Forumite
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    Yesterday, 80 odd refuges landed in Belfast to newly furnished homes & immediate benefits.

    Actually it was 57 refugees.
    http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-northern-ireland-36154540
    These people have nothing. Nothing.

    If your recent employee has been working for 14 years, then he should have some savings. He should not necessarily expect to arrive and immediately claim benefits.

    I agree we should get our own house in order, but part of being a civilized society is that we also take in those who are helpless through no fault of their own.
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