Pensioners will receive an increase of €5 a week. This is made up of the €1.75 weekly increase under the COLA mechanism together with another increase of €3.25 weekly. It is expected that 93,000 persons will benefit from this decision.
So that this increase will not be taxed Government will increase the tax ceiling to €14,000.
The supplementary assistance given to families and elderly whose income doesn’t reach the set threshold will receive increases amounting between €70 and €108 annually. Around 29,000 people will benefit.
Persons of a pensionable age who however do not qualify for a pension will have their bonus increased by €50 annually.
Last year those on the poverty line were given a benefit of €150. Now this cheque will also be given to over 65 years of age who receive supplementary assistance.
Increased benefit to employ a carer
The benefit given to those who employ a carer will now be increased to €6,000 annually. Moreover the criteria for eligibility will be widened and will also include people with disability.
Parents with children with disability who are over 16 years old and had to stop working to take care of their children will receive €300 annually.
The Government has allocated €9 million to make good for injustices that happened in the past. It is estimated that 5,500 people will benefit. The budget envisages compensation for heirs or employees of the Dockyard who suffered as a result of the presence of asbestos at their place of work.
Persons of 70 years of age or over will be given a Tallinja card so that they can use public transport without paying fares.
The government will be offering more Saving Bonds for those over 62 years of age and will be giving better rates than those paid by banks.