Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 16 September 2014

Labour plans to raise betting tax

The Labour Party wants to increase online and trackside betting taxes, it has revealed

The Labour Party wants to hike up betting taxes, it has said.

Party leader Eamon Gilmore proposes a 1.5% levy - up from 1% - on all online and trackside wagers.

Part of the cash raised would go towards maintaining the Horse and Greyhound Fund which helps finance the racing industry.

The public purse would no longer directly support the fund under Labour plans, Mr Gilmore said.

The party's proposals would see a consultation set up within the industry to plan how to raise money to keep horse racing prizes higher than in other European countries.

Labour also wants to use cash from the new betting levy to fund projects that increase sports participation in Ireland.

The party said it would overhaul the Irish Sports Council, renaming it Sport and Recreation Ireland.

The new agency would link up with local councils, the Office of Public Works, Waterways Ireland and Coillte to set up new outdoor facilities for walks, cycling, camping and water sports.

It would also work with local authorities around the county to improve recreation facilities, Mr Gilmore said.

"We need to build participation from the bottom up, while also supporting our elite athletes from the top down," he said. "Sport should be something that happens in the community, not exclusively behind high walls or expensive membership fees."

Latest News

Latest Sport

Latest Showbiz