Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Tories Stop Cider Tax

A smidgin of good news among the horse-trading badness of it all:
The Conservative Party last night forced Labour to drop three planned tax rises in a victory on the first day of the month-long election battle.

The 10% increase on a pint of cider will be scrapped, with prices dropped again on 30 June.

Plans for a new 50p tax on phone lines to help pay for rural areas to receive improved access to broadband were also dropped.

These measures were announced by chancellor Alistair Darling just weeks ago in his Budget.

Plans originally announced last year for tax relief on holiday homes were also scrapped. The plans would have put the tax treatment of furnished holiday lets on a par with that for other property rental businesses. The travel industry had warned that the changes would have cost tourism millions of pounds with the loss of thousands of jobs.

The Labour party needed Tory approval to rush through the finance bill before the dissolution of parliament. The bill turns the Budget into law. The Tories would not sanction the fast-tracking of the legislation unless the three tax hikes were abandoned.

Phillip Hammond, the shadow chief secretary to the Treasury, said it was a ‘major victory for businesses and consumers across Britain’.
The scrapping of the taxes marked a coup for the Tories on the day that prime minister Gordon Brown sought approval from the queen to hold the general election on 6 May.
From citywire.

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