Responding to today’s publication of the Government’s Jobs Initiative, Fianna Fáil Leader Micheál Martin TD commented, “One of the most striking omissions from today’s ‘Jobs Initiative’ was the absence of any figure for estimated jobs to be created. The supporting economic documents for the Initiative show that the government has not projected any net impact on employment from the measures.
“Part of this is because many of the key labour-intensive projects announced are receiving very little new money. In fact 70% of the allocation announced for education, roads and retrofitting is actually taken from existing allocations:
- €30 million is announced for environmental retrofitting of homes, but €11 million of this is coming directly from the Department’s existing capital allocation.
- €30 million is announced for summer capital works in schools, but €20 million is existing schools capital money.
- €135 million is announced for total capital spending, but €106 million of this is from existing provisions.
“On top of this 20,900 new training places are promised, but at a full year cost of €2100 per place – which is far below the real cost. This clearly implies that existing places are being double-counted.
“My party will not be repeating the sort of negative and defeatist rhetoric that we saw from the last Opposition, but today’s package taken as a whole will add little in terms of net job creation and represents a missed opportunity.”