The Great British TaxPayer Rip-off

May 12, 2008 9:58 AM

Rising taxes, soaring charges, service cuts. It’s…

THE GREAT BRITISH TAXPAYER RIP-OFF

Download the full report (PDF)

In a new report, the TaxPayers’ Alliance outlines the way that over the last decade British taxpayers have faced a huge increase in their tax bills, but at the same time, they’ve been made to pay additional fees and charges for what used to be “free” public services. To cap it all, service levels have suffered widespread cuts. Faced by a rising cost of living, these taxes and charges are adding a sizeable burden to ordinary households.

It all adds up to the Great British Taxpayer Rip-Off.

Key Findings:

Rising taxes

  • The tax bill has soared, increasing over 50% in ten years even taking inflation into account. Through vast increases in a range of up-front taxes, stealth taxes and cunning measures such as fiscal drag, the average household tax bill has grown to £20,700.
  • The total Stamp Duty collected has increased a staggering 314% in the last ten years. Together, the nine fastest growing taxes, which are detailed in the report, make up three quarters of tax revenue.
  • Fiscal drag, by which the Government catches millions of people in higher tax bands by raising thresholds slower than inflation, has raised £80 billion in the last ten years, including £14 billion in the last year alone.

Higher Charges

  • The total cost of NHS, local authority and quango charges is now over £17 billion per annum, nearly £700 per household.
  • Full details of the range of charges are given in the report, but some examples include: school dinners charges have risen 50% in ten years to £1 billion per annum; parking charges and fines have risen to over £1 billion; Hospital car parks raise over £100m in England alone.

The full report provides the most comprehensive analysis of the rise in taxes, stealth taxes and charges that has ever been compiled, illustrating the burden borne by ordinary families across the country. A PDF of the report is attached to this email.

Mike Denham, the former Treasury Economist who authored the report, said:

“The Government has used every trick in the book to drive up the tax burden, and ordinary families are paying a heavy price. People are increasingly beset by record levels of taxation and growing service charges, but there has been no improvement in services in return. We find ourselves paying more and more for less and less. With rocky economic times ahead, this rate of taxation simply cannot be sustained.”


Matthew Elliott, Chief Executive of the TaxPayers' Alliance, said:

“The British public are being ripped off in the most shameful way. The cloak and dagger methods the Government is using the squeeze money out of hard working people are deplorable. We are sick and tired of being exploited and let down. With fewer police stations, limited GPs’ hours, libraries closing, rarer bin collections and a host of other cuts we are getting less for our money than ever before. People are facing higher fuel bills, more expensive food and much bigger mortgage bills – and on top of all that they are being stealth  taxed and charged more than ever before. This con has got to stop.”

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