2:24pm 21st March 2012
(Updated 5:28pm 21st March 2012)
The Chancellor has used his Budget speech to promise what he's calling far-reaching tax reforms to support the most hard-up families.
George Osborne told MPs a simpler tax system would be good for workers and good for business:
Motorists will be breathing a sigh of relief.
There are no changes to fuel duty in today's budget.
Bad news for smokers though:
There'll be no change to duty on any alcohol though.
Elsewhere, if you're a parent claiming child benefit there's some news for you:
News now on housing, but only if you're a millionaire.
From midnight tonight, homeowners who buy a property worth more than 2 million pounds will face a new stamp duty charge of 7%.
It's what's known as the so-called "mansion tax".
And finally, the North of England was singled out for train travel as well.
We're gettng a cash boost for York based Network Rail:
Statement from Network Rail
Following today’s announcement of further funding for the Northern Hub, Network Rail chief executive David Higgins said:
"Today’s announcement of further funding for the initial stages of the Northern Hub is a welcome show of confidence in rail bringing benefits to passengers as well as driving economic growth. To realise the project’s total value of £4bn to the Northern economy and create between 20,000 and 30,000 new jobs, the final stages of funding will need to be supported in the rail budgets to be announced later this year.
"When completed, this project will be a clear demonstration of how investment in smart infrastructure can unlock economic potential by connecting commerce and communities across cities such as Manchester, Liverpool, Sheffield, Leeds and Newcastle with 700 new train services each day."
Statement from Councillor James Alexander (Labour Leader of City of York Council)
“There are some good things in the budget such as the electrification of the Transpennine route from Manchester to Sheffield. This builds on the chancellors previous announcement of the electrification of the route from Manchester to York. The Government agrees with City of York Council that transport is key to facilitating economic growth and this is why the Labour council has set up an Economic Infrastructure Fund to invest in transport.
“However it is disappointing the Chancellor has not acted upon a request to give a temporary VAT reduction to the hotel and guest house industry that would help York’s tourism economy grow. Furthermore I am disappointed the Chancellor is still pursuing a 5.6% increase in business rates in April. This is something the Leeds, York and North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce has very strong views on.
“The reduction in the 50p tax rate for the most wealthy whilst reducing child benefit is a hard sell for families who are struggling in this current economic climate. The Government’s economic policy is hurting but not working and this budget marks the end of ‘we’re all in it together’.”
Local MP backs Chancellor’s Budget
Julian Sturdy, MP for York Outer, has today backed the Chancellor’s Budget. Speaking earlier this afternoon, the Chancellor outlined the Government’s strategy to reduce the deficit, reform tax, support growth and reward work.
The budget had a neutral impact on the public finances and included the following measures:-
- An increase in the personal allowance by a further £1,100 in April 2013 – the largest increase in the personal allowance in both real and cash terms in the last thirty years;
- An additional one per cent reduction in the main rate of corporation tax;
- A reduction in the top rate of tax from 50p to 45p – paid for by other measures which will see the rich pay five times more tax in the future than in the past;
- A crack down on tax avoidance;
- An increase in the tax charged on high value properties via a new Stamp Duty Land Tax
- The Government will support Network Rail to invest a further £130m in the Northern Hub rail scheme;
- An extra £3 million for York and North Yorkshire Local Enterprise Partnership;
- Changes to the personal allowance will benefit over 1.8 million individuals in Yorkshire and the Humber.
Speaking after the Budget, Mr Sturdy said:
“The overriding responsibility of this Government is to tackle the budget deficit.
“The overriding responsibility of this Government is to tackle the budget deficit. Our plan is working and as such I am pleased that the Chancellor has produced a fiscally neutral Budget. At the same time we are lifting millions of the poorest people out of paying tax altogether and clamping down on the tax avoidance loopholes which have in the past benefited the super rich. I particularly welcome the changes to the child benefit policy which was unworkable and unfair in its original format and I am pleased that the Government is continuing to invest in York through additional funding for our local enterprise zone. Likewise, further investment in the Northern Hub will really benefit our great City and our region as a whole.”
“Some announcements will require a great deal of thought. I remain deeply concerned about any negative changes to the planning policy framework and I can assure all concerned constituents that I shall be keeping a very close eye on this matter as and when further details are made available.”
McIntosh welcomes relief for hard pressed familes
Miss Anne McIntosh, MP for Thirsk, Malton and Filey, today welcomed the announcement by the Chancellor of the Exchequer that hard pressed families in Thirsk, Malton and Filey will benefit from this year’s budget.
Miss McIntosh said:
“People in Thirsk, Malton and Filey will be £220 better off; 24million people nationally who earn less than £100,000 will gain, while 2 million people on the lowest incomes will have been taken out of tax altogether.”
"While I am disappointed that the Chancellor announced no change to fuel duty at this time, the increase in personal allowance will allow each person to keep more of their income.”
“I am seeking an early meeting with the Chancellor to discuss the increasingly detrimental impact on rural communities from having the highest fuel prices in the land.”
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