David Davis comments on the budget


As published in the Hull Daily Mail:
Cheers, George! Beer drinkers and breweries set to benefit from Budget;
There was good news for pub-goers and motorists in the Budget. James Burton and Angus Young report

Beer drinkers across East Yorkshire are to get a boost from a new tax break.

Duty on the drink was cut by 1p a pint in Chancellor George Osborne’s annual Budget announcement to the House of Commons.

The move is set to bring down costs to customers and help breweries across the region stay in profit.

The owners of award-winning Great Newsome Brewery, based in Frodingham near Hull, were keen to see the cut passed on to the public.

“It’s fantastic news,” said director Matthew Hodgson.

“We will be able to reduce our prices, continue to invest in our business and, hopefully, make it grow.

“We will be sitting down in the brewery, revising our price list and passing that benefit down to the customers.”

The drinks industry is not the only sector raising a glass.

Alongside his beer duty decision, Mr Osborne unveiled measures to make life easier for drivers across the country.

The Chancellor announced £100m of funds to fix potholes.

The cash is available to councils across the nation but Hull authorities do not feel it goes far enough.

Councillor Martin Mancey said: “While we would welcome any additional funding for potholes, the national allocation of £200m is woefully inadequate.

“We need at least an additional £5m each and every year to maintain the city”s roads.

“Although we do not yet know how much, if any, of this funding the city will receive, it is extremely unlikely it will be enough to make any significant impact on the overall state of our roads.” The region might benefit more from £140m earmarked for repairing flood defences after Britain was battered by winter storms, although the fine print remains unclear.

Given the severity of the floods that swept through Hull during December’s tidal surge, damaging 125 city firms, civic leaders are hoping some of the money will reach the region. “We don’t yet know the details of George Osborne’s Budget announcement that there will be a national allocation of £140m for repairs to damaged flood defences,” said Councillor John Hewitt, portfolio holder for neighbourhoods and communities. “However, we would welcome any extra funding that can come our way, bearing in mind Hull is second only to London in terms of flood risk.”

East Riding Council leader Stephen Parnaby was more optimistic about both developments.

“Flooding and highway maintenance are high priorities for our residents and the council takes a proactive approach to flood alleviation and the repair of the East Riding’s 3,500km of highway network,” he said.

“Once details of the application process are made available, we will take careful consider-ation as to how much to apply for and what locations this needs to be invested in.”

Mr Osborne is aiming to help manufacturers by slashing energy bills and making it easier to export goods.

A £7bn package to reduce power costs has been launched, including exemptions from green levies the Chancellor said would save mediumsized companies £50,000 a year.

There are 14 energy-intensive industries across Yorkshire that look set to benefit from a compensation scheme to protect them from green tariffs – saving on average £4.5m a year in annual bills.

For exporters, the Government’s loan pot has been doubled to £3bn and interest rates on that lending cut by a third.

“It certainly helps a lot of companies in the region who are exporters,” said Mark O’Rilley, director of manufacturers’ group Team Humber Marine Alliance.

“Particularly for smaller companies, it’s Government help with fact-finding missions in the early days that starts them off.

“It was also a pretty good budget for manufacturers, something we’ve not had for a long time. Even for medium-sized manufacturers there’s going to be some savings.”

Extended tax breaks and funding support for firms moving into Enterprise Zones will boost hopes of Siemens investing in Hull, according to Humber Local Enterprise Partnership chairman Lord Haskins.

The company has earmarked a site at Alexandra Dock for a new offshore wind turbine factory.

It lies within one of 16 Enterprise Zones around the Humber estuary.

With speculation intensifying that a long-awaited final investment decision by Siemens is imminent, Lord Haskins said the move to extend a capital allowance scheme at four of the Humber Enterprise Zones until 2020 recognised the estuary’s potential to attract energy firms.

It means businesses setting up in the zones, which include Alexandra Dock, Queen Elizabeth Dock and Paull, will be able to deduct the cost of new plants and machinery up to a maximum of £100m to offset against corporation tax. In addition, all 16 Enterprise Zones will continue to offer discounted business rates until 2018.

Lord Haskins said: “We are pleased the enhanced capital allowances and discounted business rates have been extended, as it means more businesses wishing to invest in the Humber will get the chance to reap the benefits. “Keeping these incentives in place is an important signal of the Government’s continued confidence in the Humber to deliver, and recognition of the significant potential we have to attract businesses here, particularly in the energy sector.”

Dr Ian Kelly, Chief Executive of the Hull and Humber Chamber of Commerce, said the Budget was good for business. He said: “It was good to see the Chancellor supporting the energy-intensive manufacturing industry.”

Follow us on Twitter @HullDailyMail ‘You win in one place, but lose in another’ A FAMILY in Hull say they will not benefit from the Budget.

Plans have been announced to help cut childcare costs for those spending more than £10,000 a year by providing a saving of £2,000 per child.

Christopher Osborne, 33, and his wife Lee-ann, 29, of Greatfield in Hull, have two young children but say the measures introduced will not help them.

Mr Osborne said: “It’s pointless. It’s only those who are well off and can afford childcare that are going to benefit.

“£10,000 is a yearly income for someone working. People who earn more than £60,000 get child benefit taken off them, but now it’s just going to cover the cost they have lost in child benefit that has been taken from them.

“Working people don’t earn enough to pay £10,000, so what is the point of it?” Mr Osborne, who works in Melton, said he would have liked to have seen fuel prices reduced. He said: “I have to work outside of Hull to earn what I earn. If I worked in Hull, I wouldn’t get as much. But the extra money that I earn pays for my car fuel and my insurance. If I worked in Hull on minimum wage, I’d be on the same money. “What would have helped me is fuel prices going down, which is never going to happen. If the Government put prices down and take tax off that, they will put tax on something else to get their money back, so where you are winning in one place, you are losing in another.”

Mrs Osborne, who is unemployed, says more needs to be done to help out-of-work parents find jobs. She said: “They should help people do free courses to help them get into work in a year’s time. I’ve been looking for part-time work and they don’t want to give parents who are at home that flexibility.” The budget for the next financial year promises to make more apprenticeships available for young people.

Ms Osborne said: “I know when I have applied for jobs, they have gone for those a lot younger instead of going for those who know the job. But they will still go for the younger ones, where they will train them up how they want.”

Mr Osborne said he now wants to see significant results from the Government.

He said: “Working people who are on low income or medium income don’t benefit. They say it’s going to benefit us, but you never see that money.

“We need to see what they are saying. If we see it, we’ll be happy, but a lot of people aren’t seeing it.”

Announcement gets mixed reaction from MPs EAST Yorkshire MPs have given a mixed reaction to Chancellor George Osborne’s Budget, which he said was for the “makers, the doers and the savers.”

Conservative MPs welcomed the measures set out in Mr Osborne’s fifth Budget, while Labour MPs accused the Chancellor of being “out of touch.”

Haltemprice and Howden MP David Davis said: “The Budget will help businesses in my constituency to grow through the doubling of the annual investment allowance and the measures to reduce businesses’ energy costs.”

In a surprise announcement at the end of his 55-minute Budget speech, Mr Osborne said cash shares and Isas were to be merged into a single New Isa with an annual tax-free savings limit of £15,000.

He also outlined a new Pensioner Bond, paying market leading rates, to be available from January to all people over 65.

Brigg and Goole MP Andrew Percy said: “This budget is good news for local people, especially low earners, who are now paying far less income tax than under Labour.” In contrast, Hull East MP Karl Turner, pictured, accused the Chancellor of “giving with one hand and taking away with another.”

“There was no mention of the working person who is £1,600 worse off since 2010,” the Labour MP said. “This budget painted a picture that people in Hull will simply not recognise.”

Hull North MP Diana Johnson said: “We have a Bedroom Tax, but no Mansion Tax. Bank bonuses for some, food banks for many.

“The new £1 coin sums up Lib Dem involvement in the Coalition. Not the 12 sides, but the two faces.

“This is another Bullingdon Budget from a Coalition of two parties representing one privileged class – and creating two nations.”

The national allocation of £200m to fix potholes is woefully inadequate Councillor Martin Mancey, left