Senator Alice-Mary Higgins debates the flaws in the Knowledge Development Box Bill 2016

In January 2017, the Knowledge Development Box Bill 2016 returned to the Seanad.

Following pressure from me at Committee Stage the Minister agreed to publish an annual report on outcomes of the measures implemented under the bill. However, I was disappointed that the Minister would not commit to providing the level of information we need to adequately scrutinise this measure. I was also disappointed that both Fianna Fail and Fine Gael voted against my amendments for Revenue to exchange information with the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation around the cost to the exchequer of the measure and the tax forgone. My 'join the dots' amendment which proposed to track whether the Knowledge Development Box is linking up effectively with our wider innovation and employment strategy was also defeated. 

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Failure to address glaring inequality on pensions in Budget 2018 is indefensible - Government must face up to its responsibilities towards older women

Senator Alice-Mary Higgins seeks special debate on gender and equality aspects of Budget 2018

Senator Higgins said “The failure to address this glaring inequality on pensions in Budget 2018 is indefensible, particularly given Government promises on gender and equality proofing of the budget. I am calling on Pascal Donohoe to allocate additional funds to address this before the Finance and Social Welfare Bills pass through the Oireachtas. Senator Higgins has also called for a special Seanad debate on gender and equality aspects of Budget 2018, in particular the failure to address the glaring pension inequality within the contributory state pension system.

The Civil Engagement Group introduce bill to ban trade with illegal settlements

On Tuesday January 30th, the Civil Engagement Group brought the Control of Economic Activity (Occupied Territories) Bill to the Seanad which sought to ban trade in goods and services from illegal settlements in occupied territories. While Minister Coveney expressed his commitment to the aims of the bill but he was unwilling to support it at this time. As a result, we agreed to adjourn the debate until July when we will push for a  vote.