Philip Hammond MP

15 May 2008 08:35:20

Philip Hammond MP: Increases in Vehicle Excise Duty are a "ticking time bomb" under Labour MPs

Hammondphilipbigben In the Commons yesterday Philip Hammond, Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury proposed this motion:

"That this House notes with concern the increases in Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) imposed in the Budget; notes that between 2006 and 2010 revenues from graduated VED will have more than doubled; observes that the majority of motorists who currently pay graduated VED will now pay more; deplores the Government’s decision to abolish the exemption from higher graduated VED rates for cars that emit more than 186g of carbon dioxide per kilometre and were registered between March 2001 and March 2006, and the fact that this was not stated clearly at the time of the Budget; considers that these changes will hit those on low incomes hardest and be a further burden on hard-working families already struggling to cope with soaring living costs; further notes that, although graduated VED revenues will total £4.4 billion by 2010-11, carbon emissions from motoring are expected to reduce by less than one per cent. as a result of the new VED regime; believes that any increases in environmental taxes should be offset by tax reductions elsewhere; and calls upon the Government to abandon its planned increases in VED."

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22 Apr 2008 09:39:23

Philip Hammond reminds Labour of its promises on tax

Philip Hammond MP: "In case anyone has forgotten, Labour’s 1997 election manifesto—that unfulfilled promissory note—promised, among many things, that Labour would

“establish a new trust on tax with the British people.”

That was before the term “stealth tax” had even been invented. The manifesto continued:

“Our long-term objective is a lower starting rate of income tax of ten pence in the pound. Reducing the high marginal rates at the bottom end of the earning not only fair but desirable to encourage employment. This goal will benefit the many, not the few.”

So said the 1997 manifesto, on which Labour Members sitting opposite were elected.

That long-term objective was achieved in 1999, and was hailed by the then Chancellor, who said:

“The new 10p rate—the lowest starting rate of tax in Britain for more than 35 years—will make work pay and help people, especially those who are low-paid, to keep more of the money that they earn...As a result...1.8 million low-paid workers will see their tax bills halved...a gain of up to £150 a year.”

That was what the then Chancellor said in April 1999. He concluded:

“When we make promises, we keep them.”

Today, 5.3 million low-income households know that he does not keep his promises. The income tax burden of some of them will double because, by 2007, the long-term objective had apparently outlived its political usefulness, and the low-income households that had benefited from it were betrayed by the Prime Minister. What price now his moral compass?"