Slimming the State

Irexit Freedom to Prosper will tackle wasteful tax-funded spending, eliminate costly quangos and slim down excesses of the state. Our party will implement a tax system that eases the burden on hard pressed Irish families.

In 2011, Leo Varadkar accused the government of having set up so many state agencies “it can’t even count them, let alone tell us how much they cost”. He vowed a “bonfire of the quangos” if his party were elected. Low and behold, Fine Gael’s 2011 election manifesto promised to cull 145 agencies.

A 2015 report by the Institute of Public Administration (IPA) found 62 agencies were terminated, but 52 were merged into government departments or bigger quangos. There was a net reduction of no more than 17 bodies and practically no savings.

In April 2016, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said the total cost of the St James Children’s Hospital project would be €650 million. By December 2018 the total cost of the project had increased to at least €1.73 billion.

It has been suggested that Irish taxpayers would be paying over twice as much per bed for the St James hospital than it was costing to build the most expensive hospitals in the world, such as the Royal Adelaide in Australia and the Karolinska in Sweden.

The Irish people have a right to know why our public services and things like utilities (especially electricity) cost so much and how this cost can be reduced.

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