Speaking after the announcement of Budget 2016, Michael D'Arcy stated “This is a postiive budget for farmers and I am glad to see that it has been broadly welcomed by all the farm organisations and ICOS.
“The €550 tax credit introduced for the self-employed, including farmers, is a significant boost to farm families. Combined with the significant USC reduction, farmers will experience a significant tax dividend as a result of this budget. These changes will mean over €800 in additional net income, or 3.5%, based on the average Family Farm Income. The increase in the exemption limit for USC to €13,000 will be particularly welcomed by low-income farmers.
“Budget 2016 contains an increase in the Capital Acquisitions Tax (CAT) band from €225,000 to €280,000 for children inheriting the family home or farm.
“The budget contains a tax credit of €5,000 per annum for five years for farmers, in what is a major initiative on family transfer partnerships to assist succession over a period of time. This will make it much easier for farms to be passed from one generation to the next, securing them for the future of the family farm.
“I am glad that the Government is incentivising intergenerational farm transfer. When I was a young farmer trying to lease land from a family member, there was no tax relief available for inter family arrangements. Yet there would have been had I been trying to lease from a non-relative. This has never made sense to me, which is why I have lobbied for its removal. I’m delighted that this has now come to pass. We need to incentivise inter-family transfer of land so as to encourage young people to stay on the farm. This is exactly what we have done today.
“I particularly welcome the fact that sheep fencing has been added to the TAMS 2 scheme. Better management of grass is acknowledged as a key factor in creating greater productivity from sheep farms. Incentivising sheep fencing is a very welcome and practical move.”