The Children’s Minister says budget negotiations have been ‘amicable and firm’

The Children’s Minister says she has not been kept in the dark by Fine Gael over the Government’s childcare plan.

The Irish Times reports that Katherine Zappone was left out of Budget discussions after she unveiled a plan to subsidise care for low income families.

The subsidy would amount to around €2,000 per child per year.

The plan would reportedly initially focus on families with a combined parental income of €47,000 or less.

The plan was criticised for neglecting the so-called ‘squeezed middle’, and Minister Zappone was reportedly not consulted about alternatives.

However, Minister Zappone says they are still negotiating and the reports of a rift at Cabinet do not reflect what is really going on.

“I don’t know where these phantom sources are coming from,” she said. “The negotiations have been amicable [and] firm.”

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