herald

Sunday 20 August 2017

Any spare money will just be eaten up with college fees, says Dublin father

The Leahy family live in Dublin where dad Dick (57) and mum Theresa (54) both work to support their three children. However, yesterday's budget meant nothing to their household.

"I think deep down this budget will mean nothing to me and nothing to the family," Dick said.

Their three children all live at home: Emma (23) is working part-time and looking for employment with her accountancy qualification, Eugene (21) is studying history and geography in UCD and Eoin (17) is studying for his Leaving Certificate.

The big factor that would have impacted the family's balance sheets was if the universal social charge (USC) was scrapped. After weekly bills have been paid and groceries are bought, there is nothing left over.

"When the USC came in I lost my pocket money, whether that was for a pair of jeans or something like that," explained Mr Leahy.

The cut to USC and the 1pc cut to income tax will not, however, make any major difference to their bank account.

"We're talking pennies really and once again anything that we do get back as a result will be eaten up with bus fares and college registration fees," Mr Leahy said.

One benefit that came out of yesterday's budget is the hope that the father of three will now give up smoking.

"The 40c increase will be an incentive for me to give up now," he said.

Vote

Mr Leahy voted Labour his entire life but has given up on Joan Burton's party and yesterday's budget will not win back his vote.

"This wouldn't make me vote for them again. Labour are gone.

"I'm not going to be able to pay for a holiday or even buy a new washing machine on the strength of this budget," said Dick.

"A lot of people are just trying their best now," he added.

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