Our thanks to the Scot-Buzz readers who wrote in support of our lead item last week on the iniquities of the tax system. This clearly hit the spot – not least with readers of progressive disposition who are discovering the full weight of the tax burden on a personal basis.
Unfortunately little by way of comfort is provided by Conservative-led coalition. According to the Taxpayers Alliance, there have been 299 tax hikes since the Coalition came to power…
These have taken the tax take from £513 billion in 2009-10 to £671 billion in 2015-16 on the current plans, a real terms increase of 15 per cent.
Given that the fiscal crisis came after a decade in which taxes went up, not down, says the TPA, “we need the government to cut spending and restore the public finances to health that way, not just find creative ways to take more of your money.”
Cutting tax reliefs, restricting allowances, increasing rates and levying new taxes are all ways for the government to increase revenue.
Key findings of the TPA research are:
- The Coalition Government has implemented or planned 180 more tax rises than tax cuts since May 2010 two and a half times as many tax rises as tax cuts.
- A total of 299 separate tax rises have either already been implemented or are planned between May 2010 and May 2015. Of these, 254 separate tax rises have been implemented since the 2010 election. A further 45 tax rises are planned before the end of this Parliament.
- A total of 119 separate tax cuts have either already been implemented or are planned between May 2010 and May 2015. Of these, 109 separate tax cuts have been implemented since the 2010 General Election. A further 10 tax cuts are planned before the end of this Parliament.
- The research measures the number of tax raising or cutting measures in cash terms. It does not account for inflation, so freezes are not counted while adjustments to account for inflation are.
Among the tax rises listed are Air Passenger Duty, Aggregates Levy, Alcohol Duty, Climate Change Levy, Income Tax, Landfill tax, alcohol and tobacco tax, National Insurance and Capital Gains Tax.