Powys Council must cut the waste first
Mar 2014 07
Councils in Wales have seemingly contracted Council Tax increase fever. For the past number of weeks we have seen increases of nearly 5 per cent in a substantial number of local authorities. Unlike the majority of councils in England who have received a grant to freeze Council Tax bills, councils in Wales are squeezing residents till the pips squeak. Continue Reading
LSE students Call Time on Duty
Mar 2014 06

London School of Economics students raised their glasses to our Call Time on Duty campaign. In the historic George IV pub in Portugal Street, opposite the LSE, they asked the Chancellor George Osborne to cut the duty on wine and spirits in this country, some of the highest alcohol tax rates in Europe. Continue Reading

Cut Cider Tax petition handed to Chancellor
Mar 2014 05

On the steps of HM Treasury, the TPA’s South West grassroots coordinator Tim Newark and Campaign Director, Robert Oxley, handed in a petition to the Chancellor of the Exchequer. The Petition calls on George Osborne to cut the tax on cider. The petition is part of the TPA’s general campaign to give drinkers a break in the UK and cut the duty on alcohol. Most of the 2,000 signatures on the petition come from the South West, home to a great many cider producers.

‘We gathered these signatures at county fairs and cider festivals across the country over the last few months,’ says Tim Newark. ‘From students to cider producers to local MPs, we’ve had a very positive reaction to our campaign. Last year, the Chancellor acted positively on our MashBeerTax campaign by cutting the beer duty escalator. We hope he will do the same for the cider duty escalator this year.’ Continue Reading

The Business, Innovation and Skills Committee are right – overhaul Business Rates
Mar 2014 05

The Business, Innovation and Skills Committee joined the growing chorus of Business Rates critics yesterday, describing the tax on business premises “not fit for purpose.” Just last week, the former Chief Executive of Tesco, Sir Terry Leahy said  that the “ancient” system should be reformed and “probably scrapped” because it hasn’t worked for years.

Indeed, in the Mirlees Review the Institute for Fiscal Studies demonstrated some of the shortcomings of a system which discriminates between different sectors (agriculture is exempt for example) and distorts production decisions. Continue Reading

COMMENT: For Britain to compete, our taxes must be simpler and lower
Mar 2014 03

Our Director, John O’Connell, has a column in today’s Daily Telegraph about Britain’s maddeningly complex tax system.

Complexity is expensive. That’s just as true of tax systems and economies as it is of manufacturing processes and prices. And few things are as maddeningly complex as the British tax system. As rising powers in Asia, South America and elsewhere develop increasingly competitive legal systems, workforces and infrastructure, our unwieldy and cumbersome tax code is becoming an obstacle to investment and growth that we can no longer afford to ignore.

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