With a variety of measures in this year’s budget that will directly affect students, let’s take a look.
By Ellen Cornelius
Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Michael McGrath directly addressed students today in the Dail following Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe’s outlining of a €4b cost-of-living centered budget.
Starting strong there will be a once-off €1,000 reduction in the student contribution fee this year.
This measure will take immediate effect while future reductions in fees are also planned.
Speaking in the Dail, Minister McGarth stated that: “In recognition of the cost of living pressures faced by students and their families, I am providing funding in 2023 to reduce the Student Contribution Fee by €500 for eligible families earning between €62,000 and €100,000.”
In addition to these reductions, students receiving SUSI maintenance grants will receive an extra grant payment this year with PhD students receiving a one-off cost-of-living payment in the run up to Christmas.
Minister McGrath continued by stating: “The income limit to qualify for a 50% reduction in contribution fees under SUSI will also be increased from €55,240 to €62,000 and all SUSI maintenance grants will be increased by between 10-14% in September 2023.
“The Post-Graduate Fee Contribution for eligible students of €3,500 will increase by €500 and the PhD stipend will increase too,” said Minister McGrath.
This increase will amount to €500 in stipends for PhD students funded through Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) and the Irish Research Council (IRC).
The Minister also stated that an additional €10m will be provided to further and higher education institutions.
For students who have permanently moved out of home and are now renting, another key aspect of the budget is the much-anticipated tax credit.
Tax credits on a renter’s principal private residence will be given until at least 2025 but can also be claimed back for rent paid in 2022, with each credit amounting to €500.
Further reductions to the cost of public transport are also planned.