Just because Saj is trying to crack down on the taxpayer waste in the NHS, doesn’t mean the woke whack-a-mole game is over. HMRC are now on the lookout for 3 new Diversity & Inclusion managers, with salaries starting on £34,000 and going all the way up to nearly £50,000. It never ends.
Budding diversity tsars in Belfast have until the end of the month to get their applications in at Erskine House, with diversity business manager, consultant, and adviser roles all up for grabs.
The Taxpayers’ Alliance investigations campaign manager Elliot Keck adds:
“Taxpayers are fed up of paying for diversity non-jobs. We’re told that tax cuts are years away, yet the tax collectors are still happy to splash the cash on needless hires. Government bodies should get a grip on these unnecessary posts.”
All these jobs should be part of the human resource department’s responsibilities. At least we can rest assured when the taxman raids your pockets, he/she/zi/zir represents the whole community…
The Treasury has finally published its net zero review, and it confirms the inevitable: taxes will have to go up across the board. Who’d have guessed that “you can’t put a single figure on it” meant “it’ll cost a fortune”?
The Treasury warns that “beyond taxation and public spending that directly apply to households, [net zero] will affect households directly through the goods and services they buy and indirectly through the costs on businesses“. Raising the cash will also mean rethinking the tax code, because revenues from fossil fuel related taxes will inevitably drop to zero by 2050. Fuel Duty, Vehicle Excise Duty, Landfill Tax, the Emissions Trading Scheme, and the Carbon Price Floor will all have to be scrapped at some point.
Macro-economic analysis released by Bank of America says that to achieve net zero globally will cost $150 trillion in capital investment by 2050, an amount so colossal that the investment bank’s economists say it is beyond the capability of the private sector and taxpayers combined. It will, the economists argue, require central banks globally to undertake massive quantitative easing. Despite that analysis none of the increased public spending in Britain will be funded by additional borrowing, according to the Treasury:
“Seeking to pass the costs onto future taxpayers through borrowing would deviate from the polluter pays principle, would not be consistent with intergenerational fairness nor fiscal sustainability, and could blunt incentives.”
Instead, HMRC is “exploring options to further strengthen the analytical approach to monitoring, evaluating and quantifying the environmental impacts of tax measures”, like introducing a plastic packaging tax. “Overall, a combination of tax, regulation, spending and other facilitative levers will be required.” In other words: brace yourselves.
With the pandemic over, ministers have been making plenty of moves to get the country back to pre-pandemic normal, not least seeing workers return to the office to kickstart the economy. The powers that be in Whitehall however are determined to enforce one rule for ordinary officer workers and another for their own mandarins. An email sent to Department for Transport staff reveals they will still only have to come in to the office 2-3 days a week from September. Presumably travelling is too taxing for transport policymakers…
If you think that lacks ambition, Guido hears return plans are even more sluggish elsewhere in SW1. Guido understands that HMRC, which shares a building with the back-to-work pusher-in-chief Rishi Sunak, is merely aiming for staff to return for one day per week by the end of September, with the goal of “working up to” two of days a week in the office by December. This is on top of DEFRA which Guido revealed last week to still be boasting work-from-home options on job adverts. If ministers are briefing The Mail that workers should return to the office or see their pay slashed, those not on the public purse will rightly be asking why there’s one rule for them, and another for civil servants.
The Government will come under fire for inconsistency over public-sector pay restraint – last month HM Treasury offered a 13% pay rise over 3 years for its middle managers and advisors. In February the Association of Revenue and Customs balloted their members over the pay dispute – and members voted to accept the pay boost, which came alongside a doubling of paternity leave, and support for greater paid time off for childcare in general. In an email to members of the Association of Revenue and Customs, President Loz Hutton wrote that:
“Most members will see an average of 13% consolidated increase by the end of this pay offer. The vast majority of members will reach the 2022 maximum or be within 2% of this, with the new 2022 pay ranges being amongst the highest across the civil service.”
Rishi was happy to splurge out for those working in his favoured department – tax collection – not for other public sector workers in the NHS who are receiving a pay increase of just 1% while inflation stands at 0.9%. The Treasury will only undermine its half-hearted argument for spending restraint if it can’t tighten its own belt…
New HMRC figures published today have revealed the enormous cost of the Government’s furlough scheme. In the 52 days since the scheme began on 20 April, it has cumulatively cost the treasury £19.6 billion – or £377 million a day. That’s more than enough to build a new fully staffed hospital every single day in this country…
HMRC is ramping up its work to prepare for a no deal outcome, according to details released in a National Audit Office report. The organisation is developing a new Customs Declaration Service which will replace the Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) system (which can handle a greater volume of trade). The report found numerous issues have been resolved. Auditor general Amyas Morse said:
“HMRC has made progress in developing its contingency plans, and has reduced the risk of it not having an operational system in place next March. Inevitably risks remain, and the next few months are crucial if HMRC is to make this a success.”
The report will be seen as evidence that government machinery is heeding the call of senior Brexiters to ramp up no deal prep. Remainers claim that such preparations are not possible, in reality they are already taking place…