Pensions reform to continue with 2013 Budget
The pensions reform would continue with the Budget for 2013, Finance Minister Tonio Fenech announced this evening.
Mr Fenech said that contribution credits would be provided to parents born between 1952 and 1962 that quit their job to raise their children. Since these parents will experience an increase in the number of contributory years from 30 to 35, they will benefit proportionally as those parents born after 1962.
These parents will benefit from credited contributions for every child, and in case of children with disability will receive two years contributions should the parent had quit their job to raise their children and eventually returned to work as is the case for parents born after 1962.
More forms of disability will be eligible for this pension.
There will also be the introduction of one mechanism to determine whether a person qualifies for the Special Disability Card or for registration with disability when seeking work through the ETC.
Married people with a disability who wed before January 2007 will be entitled to same pension as those who got married after that date
When it comes to the elderly, the €300 allowance announced last year for persons aged 80+ is extended to those aged 78+ and eventually to those aged 75+. 1.5 million euro vote per year. There will be a full COLA increase granted to the elderly.
Investment in Elderly Homes will continue through the conversion of Casa Flamini in Paola.
Supplementary assistance for those aged 65+ will be revised in cases where household income is below the risk-of-poverty threshold, to ensure that this category is covered by a higher allowance.
Service Pension initiative will be continued through a further increase of €200 in the exempted amount. In total, the exempted amount has now reached €1,266 per year.
The Pensjoni tal-Wens will be extended to those not covered by this pension due to means testing, as well as to those leaving the job market and qualifying for social assistance.
Parents of persons with a disability paying fees for residency services in respite centres will receive a maximum of €2,500 in tax rebates.
150 new jobs (50 of which are in Gozo) will be created for people with disabilities through the extension of work schemes with local councils to cover NGOs and other Government entities.
Mr Fenech also proposed a residence for persons with a disability within the voluntary sector in Gozo.