The opposition once again railed against Blümel’s financial plan, Kurz announced a simplification of the corona rules and tax breaks for the catering industry had been decided. Day one in the National Council.
First one Budget day in the National Council:
- Opposition criticized Blümels Budget plan
- In short: there should be a minimum of rules in the future
- Kogler want Kulturhilfe define about income
- Tax relief For gastronomy
It was a turbulent day in parliament. Today, Tuesday, the first of three days of debate took place. The political hacking around the 2020 budget continued. The opposition raged against the financial plan by finance minister Gernot Blümel.
Culture: Money should also be for freelancers
But there was also encouragement in terms of finance. The Vice Chancellor responsible for art and culture Werner Kogler (Greens) assured Tuesday night during the budget debate in the National Council that further money would flow after the bridging aid for this area. This then helps over the respective Loss of revenue It would be logical for him, for example, to define it by missing tourists.
The Vice Chancellor also assured that there would be a support fund for freelance artists quickly. The grant should include compensation for six months.
Even if the figures in the budget for art and culture are spoiled by Corona, the minister emphasized that even before the crisis have given the area a corresponding importance. After all, 11 million euros more were budgeted.
Tax relief for catering decided
Not just the culture, also the gastronomy should get further Corona help. From July 1st, the sparkling wine tax will be permanently removed, the VAT on non-alcoholic beverages will be halved for a limited period. Business lunches can be sold to a higher degree in the future and meal vouchers will continue to be privileged.
The elimination of the sparkling wine tax applies permanently; previously, one euro had to be paid here per liter. The reduction in the VAT rate for non-alcoholic beverages is limited until the end of the year; the tax rate here will be ten percent in the future. So far, this value was only valid for animal milk and tap water. This affects the supply of “open non-alcoholic beverages”. This means that not only are directly served beverages it also means those that are typically opened directly by the restaurateur or the customer in the course of the purchase. Are not included beverages in Machines or in supermarkets, but very much in canteens or at sausage stands.
There are also tax breaks for meal vouchers that employers make available to their employees. Until now, these were tax-free up to a value of EUR 4.40 per working day if the vouchers were only consumed at the workplace or in a restaurant. This amount will be raised to eight euros. When paying for food that is not consumed immediately, the tax exemption currently only goes up to a value of 1.10 euros, which is increased to two euros.
Increase in justice and home affairs
The first day of the budget debate in the National Council ended quietly. Minister of Justice Alma Zadic (Greens) was pleased with the increase in her budget, with which she had managed to avert the feared “silent death of the judiciary”. The FPÖ don’t really believe in it yet, one expects it Loss of revenue in the judiciary due to the corona crisis.
Minister of the Interior had also seen reason for a good mood on budget Karl Nehammer (ÖVP). According to the pre-corona figures, his department is entitled to around 107 million more than last. This will primarily finance the further expansion of the plan and training positions in the executive branch. Small disputes accompanied the debate less because of the budget but because of the campaign-related red-turquoise matches around the corona policy Vienna.
Foreign minister Alexander Schallenberg (ÖVP) emphasized in his chapter the increase in the foreign disaster funds from ten to 25 million and the “substantial” strengthening of development cooperation. He praised the “logistical masterpiece” in bringing Austrians home in the corona crisis. The importance of diplomatic missions was also seen. These are “not luxury, but life insurance for those in need”.
The budget debate will continue on Wednesday from 9 a.m. with the sphere of action of the Minister of Infrastructure Leonore Gewessler (Greens). After that, national defense, business and agriculture as well education resolved. The parliamentary budget marathon ends with the last chapters and the final votes on Thursday.