Archive for October 15th, 2010

No Tax Change for Artists

15th October 2010

The Irish Times has a report today on the comments to the Dáil by the Minister for Arts Mary Hanafin about the artists’ tax exemption scheme.

She told the Dáil she had “no plans to have any further review of the scheme carried out at this time”.

The scheme, introduced 41 years ago to create an environment in which the arts could flourish, offers tax exemptions for certain artists and writers. The Minister said the scheme “marks Ireland out as unique in Europe in its support for its artists”.

The arrangement was changed in last December’s budget, with a new entry-level income restriction of €125,000 and a full restriction applying at €400,000. The Minister said 82 per cent of people who benefit from the scheme earn €40,000 a year or less.

Asked by Labour arts spokeswoman Mary Upton to examine how the exemption is distributed, Ms Hanafin said she was reluctant to suggest changing the scheme “at all, lest people think we would like to change it entirely”.

They did not want to do that because it was a “good internationally recognised scheme”. She suggested “it is best to let the hare sit”.