So what does the Autumn Statement mean for Cornwall?

Phillip Hammond, the newish Chancellor of the Exchequer gave his first Autumn Statement today – which is kind of like the Budget day when they put 1p on a pint and 10p on a packet of fags n stuff, but it’s not called that. It’s kind of like a mini-budget day but in Autumn but don’t remember that because next year it’ll be a spring statement instead. Got it? Will there still be a good ol’ fashioned budget day? dunno

Anyhow the main points were: (thx tax payer funded BBC!)

  • Government finances forecast to be £122bn worse off in the period until 2021 than forecast in March’s Budget
  • Public spending this year to be 40% of GDP – down from 45% in 2010
  • National Living Wage to rise from £7.20 an hour to £7.50 from April next year
  • No plans for further welfare savings in this Parliament
  • Rural Rate Relief to be increased to 100%, “giving small businesses a tax break worth up to £2,900”
  • Promise to abolish Autumn Statement, with Budgets happening in the autumn from next year, along with “Spring Statement” from 2018

 

We asked representatives from our political parties

“How will the Autumn Statement affect Cornwall?”

Steve Double tweeted @cornishstuff

“The devil in detail  &  I will work to get best deal on funds announced today 4 Mid-Cornwall people”

double
Steve Double MP for Snozzle & NQY

In a full statement released later , Steve said:

“There are a number of really excellent announcements in this Autumn Statement that mean good things for the people of Mid-Cornwall.”

“I was particularly pleased to see that the Government has reconfirmed its commitment to the Roads Fund, funded by Vehicle Excise Duty, and will invest £1.1 billion more in local transport networks, and £220 million to address pinch points on strategic roads.”

“It is also great to see the Government continuing to help people keep more of what they earn. Raising the tax-free personal allowance has done more to help ordinary working people than almost anything else. As a result of the Government’s changes, someone with a salary of £15,000 pays just £800 a year in tax now compared to £1,705 in 2010. That’s a massive boost to the incomes of low and middle earners, cutting tax for 28 million people since 2010 and taking 4 million people out of income tax altogether.”

“Combined with this, the Government has also said it will increase the National Living Wage from £7.20 to £7.50 in April 2017 – a further pay rise for 1.3 million people worth over £500 a year to a full-time worker, more excellent news to make sure work pays.”

“With private renting so expensive in Cornwall I was also pleased to see the announcement that the Government will ban fees to tenants as soon as possible, so tenants will no longer be hit by extra charges that can be difficult to afford. The private rental sector has needed tighter regulation for some time and this is a good first step.”

“Of particular importance to rural areas like Mid-Cornwall, is the Government’s commitment to invest a further £1 billion in our digital infrastructure and give 100 per cent business rates relief for five years on new fibre infrastructure, supporting further roll out to homes and businesses.”

“Finally, as a supporter of the Fair Fuel campaign, it was great to see the Government cancelling  the fuel duty rise that is scheduled for April – keeping it frozen for the seventh consecutive year, saving the average car driver £130 a year and the average van driver £350 since 2010.”

“While these are all good and positive steps, my job as MP for St Austell and Newquay means I am committed to getting the best possible deal for the people of Mid-Cornwall. I will continue to work with colleagues both locally and in Westminster to ensure that we get a fair share of the funds that have become available in today’s Autumn Statement.”

dwelly
Tim Dwelly, Leader of Cornwall Labour

Cornwall Councillor Tim Dwelly, Leader of Cornwall Labour Group said that the Chancellor had ignored Cornwall.  He sent this response:

“The Chancellor’s Autumn Statement has failed to deal with the impact that Brexit will have on the country and here in Cornwall. Phillip Hammond has been side-lined on the Brexit negotiations, and can’t say whether we will have access to the single market, risking millions of jobs. At the time when Cornwall is asking for the loss of invested money to be made up by the Government, the Chancellor has ignored us. The amount of investment at risk in Cornwall is nearly 1bn and the Government needs to take this seriously. I am disappointed that there has been no announcement on funding for the NHS when services are being cut across Cornwall. Whilst instead the Tories announce funding for unpopular grammar schools which Cornwall Council rejected in a motion brought by Labour just yesterday”

If Cornwall Lib Dems & MK, Greens would like to send a response as asked, then we’ll update this article. Thx @cornishstuff

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