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The Green Tax switch

June 8, 2006 6:00 PM
Sir Ming trys out the switch to Chris Huhne's hybrid car

Sir Ming trys out the switch to Chris Huhne's hybrid car

Liberal Democrat leader Menzies Campbell MP has unveiled plans to protect and improve our environment with a major "green tax switch".

The party wants to cut income tax for everyone, and take millions of the least well off out of income tax altogether, whilst instead taxing pollution more heavily.

"We are the only major party which takes the environment seriously and that does mean that environmental taxes will rise, but we will also cut income tax by 2p in the pound and take around three million people out of income tax completely. This will be good news not just for our environment but for everyone who will benefit from income tax cuts," said Ming Campbell.

You can read his speech in full and watch a video interview with him at http://www.libdems.org.uk/menzies-campbell-speech.html

Local campaigner Cllr David Goodall adds this switch to Green Taxation is part of a wider reform of the taxation system that the Liberal Democrats wish to do with five main aims, the Liberal Democrats wish to make the tax system:

  • Fairer: - progressive in relation to income and wealth
  • Simpler: - for individuals and companies
  • Greener: - taxing 'bads' and bigger incentives to sustainability
  • Local: - greater fiscal freedom for democratic local government
  • Efficiency: - promoting incentives to work and save

The general aim is to cut the burden of direct taxes on the low paid and 'Middle Britain' and pay for it by raising taxes on those who pollute the environment and on the very wealthy. As ever with all Liberal Democrat tax policies they will be fully costed and probably account for in a balanced budget at the next general election. However the broad approach is clear:-

  • Sir Ming discusses Eastleigh’s wind turbine with Cllr Louise Bloom and Chris Huhne MP

    Sir Ming discusses Eastleigh's wind turbine with Cllr Louise Bloom and Chris Huhne MP

    Cut the basic national rate of income tax from 22% to 20%.
  • Raise the income tax threshold to lift low paid workers people and pensioners out of income tax- aim to lift 2 million out of income tax.
  • Raise upper rate threshold to lift people out of the top rate of income tax- since 1997/98 an extra 1.2m now pay top rate of income tax (a total of 3.29m) - we aim to reverse this.
  • Scrap Council Tax and replace with Local Income Tax - local government funding is under review by Sir Michael Lyons
  • Return environmental taxes to their 1999 level as a percentage of GDP (3.6% from 3%), increase aviation taxation, reform CCL, widen VED differential (protecting rural communities)

Currently there is a Tax Commission within the party looking at the detail implementation of these policies and detailed recommendations are expected to be published around the middle of July. Then as a democratic party, we shall debate these properly at our Autumn Conference and approve or not then. So watch this space for the more detail in September.

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