IPSA Gives Another Taxpayer Boost to MPs’ Budgets

At the start of the pandemic, Guido was the first to report that MPs were to receive a huge boost to their expenses allowance, when IPSA raised their monthly credit card limit to £10,000; allowed items to be claimed for without proof of purchase; and increased office budgets by £10,000. Since then, IPSA has also changed rules to allow MPs to claim for taxis. We can’t expect our representatives to catch the plague-ridden public transport like the rest of the proles…

Yesterday, a further boost was announced, in the form of a £312 annual homeworking bonus for MPs’ staff, to cover their home telephone usage, internet, electricity and gas – all tax-free. If every parliamentary staffer – none of whose incomes have been hit by Coronavirus – claimed the allowance, it would cost the taxpayer £1.1 million…

MPs will also be able to request up £18,270 extra for their staffing budget to deal with “a rise in workload for their offices as a result of coronavirus” – up from the £10,000 allowance rise announced at the start of the lockdown.

Responding to the neverending parliamentary pandemic pocket-lining, The Taxpayers’ Alliance Duncan Simpson told Guido:

“MPs and their staff should not be getting budget top-ups for working from home when everyone else is being expected to just get on with it.

“Millions have been stuck in the house, looking after kids and cracking on with their day jobs – where’s their £312 annual homeworking bonus? 

Parliamentary authorities need to get a grip and stop pampering our politicos.”  

Guido can’t imagine this is the last excuse for picking the pockets of the public we’ll see from IPSA before the pandemic is out…

mdi-timer 26 June 2020 @ 11:15 26 Jun 2020 @ 11:15 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Play Chancellor With The Taxpayers’ Alliance Tax Calculator

The UK’s tax burden, as the former Chancellor reminded us in his resignation speech (and on Twitter), is the highest it’s been for fifty years. Ahead of the budget, the Taxpayers’ Alliance has produced a nifty tool for you to cut the cost of Britain’s tax regime. The calculator allows users to select which taxes they want to cut, and by how much – showing how much money it will save the taxpayer at the end. Click here to try it now and see how much you can save!

mdi-timer 4 March 2020 @ 10:10 4 Mar 2020 @ 10:10 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Government Wants Your Views on BBC Reform

Co-conspirators will know that Guido has little time for the BBC’s biased activist/experts, bloated news crews, and Question Time group think. Rival broadcasters don’t charge a legally-enforced licence fee to non-viewers. Why should the BBC continue to enjoy that privilege?

With the new consultation on decriminalising the TV tax, ministers may be finally looking at major changes to Britain’s state broadcaster. Decriminalising the licence fee is the first step to funding reform; from a tiered system to a subscription model. Something we’ve called for long before Dom got on the phone to Tim Shipman

The Taxpayers’ Alliance is preparing for a fight, rallying grassroots supporters to counter the tidal wave of worthy submissions (often from taxpayer-funded groups which always dominate these otherwise dull consultations). They’ve designed a nifty tool to do the legwork for you, and generate a submission which won’t fall foul of the notoriously selective civil service consultation guidelines. You can find it here.

They’re also on the lookout for some examples of poor old dears who’ve been on the receiving end of the BBC’s nasty enforcement letters and home visits. If your grandma’s been hassled by some BBC jobsworths, let the TPA know:  info@taxpayersalliance.com

Join Guido in sticking in a submission, to stick it to the Beeb. The road to BBC reform starts by clicking here….

mdi-timer 28 February 2020 @ 15:57 28 Feb 2020 @ 15:57 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Government Gave £40 Million to Left-Wing Lobby Groups

£39,584,172 of taxpayers’ money was funnelled to left-wing lobby groups, new research from the Taxpayers’ Alliance has revealed. Between the years 2017 and 2019, groups arguing for higher taxes, spending, and in favour of a greater regulatory burden were flush with money – handed to them by the Government they campaign against…

Taxpayer funding went to the socialist Fabian Society, anti-growth New Economics Foundation, and anti-trade deal ‘War on Want’. Other cash that was splurged on left wing campaigners included:

  • £215,000 given to the IPPR, a left wing “progressive policy” think tank, which lobbies for higher taxes and government spending.
  • £978,000 handed over to Rosa, an organisation that claimed last year “The Conservative government is actively selling off our NHS to the US.”
  • £185,759 sloshed over to nanny state lobby group Alcohol Change UK which pushes the Government to further increase the price of alcohol.
  • £228,000 forked out to the British Youth Council, an organisation that runs the ‘Youth Parliament‘, lobbying the government to lower the franchise to include children, and supports nationalised transport.

No need to ask these left-wing groups ‘who funds you’. The answer is usually ‘the taxpayer’…

mdi-timer 24 February 2020 @ 13:28 24 Feb 2020 @ 13:28 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
50 Transport Infrastructure Projects More Cost Effective Than HS2

Last year the Taxpayers’ Alliance announced the winners of the Great British Transport Competition to find popular, better value for money alternatives to HS2. They found 50 transport infrastructure project ideas that were better value for money than HS2. The winning project ideas had construction costs came to £45.1 billion – which is less than half the under-estimated budget for HS2. Ahead of the Cabinet decision on HS2, Guido thought we would list the projects again… eagle-eyed MPs will note the constituencies that will benefit.

Many of the entries required only relatively small sums of money to achieve vast benefits for local communities with the potential for dramatically transforming the transport infrastructure nationally, not only in the Midlands.

Project Cost £
A1 – Dual Carriageway From Durham to Edinburgh 1,300,000,000
Reopen the Skipton-Colne Railway Line 100,000,000
Reopen the Beverley to York Railway 300,000,000
Ashington, Blyth & Tyne Railway 50,000,000
Britain’s S-Bahn Network: Leeds 1,000,000,000
Reopen the Keswick to Penrith Railway 110,000,000
Upgrade The Settle & Carlisle Railway 30,000,000
Reopen Blackburn to Hellifield 15,000,000
High Speed UK-North 18,100,000,000
The Whitacre Link 400,000,000
Reopen Stourbridge to Lichfield 120,000,000
Upgrade the Rugby to Birmingham Railway Line 1,500,000,000
Upgrade the A5 to expressway standard 500,000,000
Reopen the Sutton Park Line to passengers 100,000,000
Chiltern Main Line Electrification 1,000,000,000
Midland Main Line Electrification 5,000,000,000
Improve the Felixstowe to Nuneaton Freight Route 1,500,000,000
Reopen The March to Wisbech Line to passengers 110,000,000
A new station on the Bury St Edmunds to Ely Line 40,000,000
Extend Crossrail to Stansted Airport & Cambridge 4,000,000,000
Lower Thames Crossing 6,800,000,000
Brighton Mainline 2: Sussex Phase 500,000,000
Improve Connectivity to Bristol Temple Meads 125,000,000
Rebuild Cullompton Station 15,000,000
Exeter to Plymouth via Okehampton 500,000,000
Reopen the Bodmin to Wadebridge Railway Line 25,000,000
Cross Cornwall Rail Link 125,000,000
Build cycle paths next to motorways & A-roads 1,820,000,000

Many of these projects will take only 3 years or less to complete, providing concrete evidence of action on transport which can be delivered before the next election, unlike HS2. Not that Guido is cynically suggesting that electoral calculations should play a role, the projects stand on their own merits…

Download the full details of all the winning projects here.

mdi-timer 5 February 2020 @ 13:26 5 Feb 2020 @ 13:26 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Poll: Tax Cuts Winning Working Class Votes

Polling by Public First for the Taxpayers’ Alliance finds that tax cuts are popular with workers. Lost in the all-party noise about spending on ‘free things’ is the enduring truth that tax cuts are popular with voters. The key findings were:

  • 60% of C2DE voters strongly favour cutting the basic rate of income tax down to 15p in the pound, from 20p now.
  • 68% of C2DE voters want tax thresholds linked to inflation or wage growth, so people don’t move into higher rate bands accidentally.
  • More than 75% of those polled supported a cap on council tax rises.
  • C2DE voters are more than twice as likely as ABC1 voters to back cutting corporation tax to 12.5%
  • 68% of C2DE voters, backed abolishing the BBC licence fee, compared to 40% amongst ABC1 voters, one of the biggest disparities found between the two groups.

The patronising attitude of politicians, progressive think-tankers and broadsheet columnists towards the working classes is that they want more welfare spending, in reality they want to be able to keep and spend more of their own money on the things they want – like everybody else. They are pro-business because most of them work in small businesses. Poll after poll shows that the truth is that people who work hard to earn a living resent over-generous welfare benefits more than those on higher incomes; for example 50% of C2DE voters believe there should be a National Insurance “no claims” rebate every five years for people who haven’t claimed Jobseekers’ Allowance. Only 39% of higher earning ABC1 voters think the same.

Read More

mdi-timer 5 November 2019 @ 08:31 5 Nov 2019 @ 08:31 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
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