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I'd raise the VAT on pets and pet foods (terrible carbon footprints they have) and reduce the VAT on bikes to zero.

Revenue neutral and gets the country fitter.

pets make people fit too, a dog requires daily walking, sometimes more...

..."Where would you target tax relief in the UK?"...

Simple.

I'd reduce taxation on vehicle fuels (petrol, diesel, aviation kerosene) - thereby reducing the cost of all forms of transport. This would in turn feed into lower costs for the consumer - giving everyone a feelgood-factor and helping the Bank of England to meet its inflation-targets at the same time.

taxpayers

Tax relief for members of the TA.

Tax relief on flights for working class families so they can enjoy holidays to Crete too.

Tax relief for Churches.

Tax relief for those who want to watch tv but not the BBC.

Tax relief for political activity.

Just Churches?

Tax relief for families where one parent would like to stay at home and look after their children.

Taxing pet food and pets is about as big a vote loser as you could dream up.

The issue also arises as to what is a pet? Some people have working dogs that are vital to their business, others to their well-being (eg guide dogs): are they to be penalised?

File this one under "Daft".

Political donations to be set against income to a max of say £2500pa

Rather than charities claiming tax rebate the individual does.

Payment for extracurricular activities at state schools to be tax deductible.

Sports equipment to be tax deductible for those in state education up to 18.

No taxes or VAT on bicycles.

Retain the VAT opt-out on children's clothes, i.e. refuse to kow-tow to Bruxelles.

Private Medical Insurance to be tax deductible and VAT free.

Free school dinners and milk, provided meals are nutritious and healthy.

We should be wary of either tax breaks or government handouts to encourage specific behaviour. It smacks of too much State power.

It would be even better if it was a cash payment, not a tax relief (why should poor kids not benefit?).

It would be even better if it was a cash payment, not a tax relief (why should poor kids not benefit?).

Posted by: Mike A | August 02, 2007 at 15:17

What poor kids?
Poor parents may be.
If parents insist on having kids without the financial wherewithall are they not reckless and endangering the kid and responsible for the situation. Its reckless parenting that needs to be dealt with not poor kids. That's yet another special dreamt up by the social nancy's to give themselves more leverage on the rest of the country and grab extra cash out of state funds for their friends and their narrow little jobs as parasites on the state's back.

Taxing pets and pet foods is an awful idea, what have pets ever done to you? A certain vote loser in a nation of animal lovers. And as politicians are about the least liked non-criminals on the planet, tax relief for funding them would be very unpopular too. It is no different to state funding really, very wrong. A tax on political donations would be more popular.

I also think tax relief for any religion would be wrong. Why would it be a good idea? How would more churches [and other religion's buildings due to equality laws] make the UK better?

I think my previous 100 policies idea of a tax rebate for people working from home and employers employing home-workers would be a very good idea. It would hugely increase the available labour market, reduce the amount of people unemployed and claiming incapacity benefit, create jobs nationwide, reduce traffic and pollution, and reduce the over-crowding of the South East as they could live/work anywhere.

I think a similar tax relief for new businesses, small businesses and the self-employed would encourage enterprise as well. Maybe extra for rural Post Offices and small shopkeepers?

- council tax relief at 50% for OAPs and carers on fixed incomes/income support
- no VAT on home improvements or extensions
- married couple allowance

Abolition of tax credits and increase personal allowances to take people out of the tax system altogether.
At least 50% Council Tax relief for OAPs.
Abolition of capital gains tax and inheritance tax whose main purpose is to
provide employment for Inland Revenue officials and tax advisors.
Restoration of mortgage interest tax relief
up to a certain level.
VAT exemption for charities.
Tax relief on private pension contributions, private health insurance contributions, and school fees.
Why didn't we make more of Gordon's abolition of the 10% tax band - robbing from the poor ?

Tax Relief and Religion should be limited only to the Church of England.

Most certainly a taxable benefit for marriage, BUT, only hetereosexual marriage.

Tax relief for kids to be limited to the first 2 only.

OAP's on fixed and low income should not be in the tax environment.

"Tax Relief and Religion should be limited only to the Church of England."

Why?

George Hinton --

Households in the bottom few deciles pay almost no income tax, so trying to incentivise them through the income tax system is a nonsense.

This thread is worth pursuing. We have debated this before and I can recall some interesting ideas emerging. I think we should find ways to cut council tax for people who contribute to communities because they are saving society money by making it work. We should really look at this and come up with practical ways of doing it and admisnitering it a reasonably simple way. It must be within the wit of man to figure a way of doing this. It would be right, Conservative and good politics as well. I prefer this sort of positive carrot approach rather than punishments eg taxes on air flights or booze,

Matt

Allow VAT registered companies to claim back say 25% on their fuel costs instead of just the 17 1/2%. this should filter through to cheaper goods in shops etc.

I>"...Households in the bottom few deciles pay almost no income tax, so trying to incentivise them through the income tax system is a nonsense...."

My idea of 'social justice' is that when it comes to tax-relief those who pay the most tax should expect the most relief. Think of it like 'redistributing shareholder value' - you get a payback in accordance to your investment. If you're not 'investing' much to society in the way of taxes it's wrong of you to expect much in the way of a tax-relief dividend.

Matt Wright @ 17.45 - as I was reading these posts, the same sort of idea came to me, that it would be a good thing if people who contribute to society in terms of work in the voluntary sector, could somehow benefit from tax relief of some sort, after all there are so many areas that need help, but can't pay wages or only nominal expenses. The other area that perhaps could benefit in some way would be carers, who get very little help from the state, and fulfil a very valuable role.

Obviously the family should be the main target of tax relief, though like another commentor above, I'd say the national churches of England, Scotland and Wales should also receive tax relief. Of course, the situation is a little different in Northern Ireland.

I'd definitely not want to see churches of any kind blessed with tax-relief. Surely we should be promoting a worldview based on rationalism and reason, not delusions and fairy-stories?

[OK if you insist on tax-relief for churches I demand equal treatment for my local place-of-worship, the Pelican Inn in Froxfield]

Thanks Patsy, we seem to be agreeing on a few things. I've been thinking about this further. It is a great opportunity for DC and it would marry two apparently conflicting wings in the party by being a sort of progressive Thatcherism. Lady Thatcher used tax relief to help create a more enterprising country in terms of business. Building on the argument that we need to heal a broken society as well as help industry then we should use tax relief to encourage a much wider concept of an enterprising country. As you say we should look to incentivise those that are binding communities together and saving the cost of Breakdown Britian. Combine these ideas with some carefully worked out localism and we could have the makings of something we can refine into a strong practical idea of what modern Conservatives stand for.

Matt

i'd like to see as many tax credits as feasibley possible scrapped, to be replaced with precision tax cuts of equal or greater value to those losing the credits. think of the slashed beauracracy/costs and the increased simplicity. no more will thousands be over-paid and forced to pay it back.

Churches and other charities already have tax 'relief' ... the VAT position of the trading arms of charities is so complex and difficult that it has resulted in much litigation. Simplification of the VAT system is long overdue; but the difficulties with it include the fact that there will be many losers as well as winners and the fact that it is a tax that the UK Government cannot simplify alone - it will take the whole EU to reform it.

Tax credits were a simple method for appearing to benefit the poorest without actually costing the country much ... it was and remains a bit of a tax con. Scrapping tax credits would be relatively unpopular among those claiming them, because they do appear to make a difference to those that claim them. The problems with implementation and the running of the tax credit system are obvious areas for saving in administrative costs; and for dealing with the consequences of errors in calculation that arise from simple mistakes and even fraud.

If we decide to pledge to scrap tax benefits (which I hope that we will do), we will need to ensure that the increases in allowances that we pledge and other tax and benefit changes at least equal the cost to some of the poorest families in the UK of the removal of the tax credits.

I'm not keen on this idea. The USA's earned income tax credit for lower paid workers is a good idea, though - get paid for working!

I also favour greatly raising the threshold at which income tax starts to be paid (ideally to around £10,000), with an additional transferable allowance for married couples to encourage marriage, and making the entirety of the tax allowance transferable between married couples to support single-earner households. Also fold national insurance into income tax - NI is incredibly regressive and punitive to low paid earners.

Tax Relief and Religion should be limited only to the Church of England

All of the Church of England, or just the High Anglican variety?

What if the CofE splits over gay bishops? I take it we will limit the privilege only to the evangelical part, and not to those spawn-of-the-devil woolly liberals who would tolerate that abomination of nature?

Yes, I can see how we can limit tax relief to the CofE, in the service of God's will. But I am less clear how we will limit religion to the CofE. Some might suggest unkindly that it's rather the opposite.

Most certainly a taxable benefit for marriage, BUT, only hetereosexual marriage

And given rule 1, only CofE heterosexual marriages, right?

Tax relief for kids to be limited to the first 2 only.

To apply only to the first two children of CofE heterosexual married couples, of course.

What if one of the kids apostasises or converts? I take it we stop the relief. Would it transfer to the third child (now officially the second, as the apostate would no longer be a rightful member of the household)? Or should the parents be punished for failing to create the sort of righteous household in which no one could question their faith?

Mind you, I can see a weakness in all of this. Some people may pretend to be CofE, although they are not sincere. We'd better make it conditional on regular attendance at church. Even then, some people may judge an hour a week of boredom to be worth the tax benefit. Better ask the vicars to give the government regular appraisals of the sincerity and effort of each member of their flock. It's almost a foolproof plan...

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