Tuesday, 17 October 2006

Ceisteanna (198, 199, 200)

Brian O'Shea

Ceist:

278 Mr. O’Shea asked the Minister for Finance the proposals he has to amend Section 469 of the Taxes Consolidation Act 1997 as sought by the Dyslexia Association of Ireland (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32963/06]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Michael Ring

Ceist:

285 Mr. Ring asked the Minister for Finance if he will amend Section 469 of the Taxes Consolidation Act 1997 (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32993/06]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Finian McGrath

Ceist:

287 Mr. F. McGrath asked the Minister for Finance if he will examine the option of an amendment to Section 469 of the Taxes Consolidation Act 1997 in order for the cost of specific tuition for people with dyslexia to qualify for tax relief under the heading of health expenses. [33021/06]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Minister for Finance)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 278, 285 and 287 together.

I am aware of the extra expense that can arise for parents who have children with dyslexia.

In recent years, the Government has increased significantly the supports available through the direct expenditure system for children with disabilities, including those with dyslexia.

As with many areas where State support may be required, the question arises as to whether such support may be more effectively provided through the direct expenditure route rather than through the tax system. One advantage of the former mechanism is that the support may be better targeted at those in need, irrespective of family income, whereas support through the tax system can only benefit those whose incomes are high enough to benefit from tax relief.

I have no plans to extend tax relief to cover expenses incurred by parents who have children with dyslexia. However, this matter, like any other, can be raised by the Deputies at Finance Bill time.