Chancellor George Osborne, who is preparing to table the first Tory budget of 18 years, will slow the pace of planned welfare cuts when he presents his Budget…reports Asian Lite News
BBC said the chancellor is expected to take three years instead of two to reach his £12bn target. Measures restricting tax credits for families with more than two children are also anticipated in the budget.
The first all-Conservative Budget since 1996 is also likely to cover Sunday trading, inheritance tax and social housing and to raise tax allowances.
Mr Osborne is set to promise “bold” policies that will “secure Britain’s future”.
The Tories have not yet said where the bulk of the £12bn in welfare savings they have pledged to make will come from.
The Chancellor will also pledge to save middle-earners up to £1,300 a year by raising the higher rate tax threshold. This boost to middle-income families will be one of the centre-pieces of a budget, The Telegraph said.
The chancellor will resist calls from senior Tories including Boris Johnson and Lord Lawson, the former chancellor, to reduce the top rate of income tax from 45p to 40p.
Under plans set out in earlier this year, the 40p rate was due to increase to £42,700 in April 2016 and £43,300 in April 2017. Officials said the rate would rise further to £45,020 in 2019. The changes would be worth £172 to those paying the 40p rate, and will cost the Exchequer £960 million in 2016/17, £1.48 billion in 2017/18, £1.585 billion in 2018/19 and £1.68 billion in 2019/20.
BBC political editor Nick Robinson said Mr Osborne would reveal the detail of the cuts, which would be phased in, with £8bn by 2017/8 and a further £4bn by 2018/9.
Tax credits are expected to be in the firing line, with David Cameron having promised to end the “ridiculous merry-go-round” of taxing low earners then handing them money back in benefits.
BBC Newsnight reported tax credit entitlements will be reduced for families with more than two children. The measure, which would apply to new families coming into the system, would save £1.4bn.
The Conservatives have pledged to eliminate the UK’s budget deficit by 2018.
A number of measures have already been revealed, including:
An increase in the inheritance tax thresholdto £1m for married couples by 2017
A lower benefit capof £23,000 in London and “lower than that in the rest of the country”
Making local authority and housing associationtenants in England who earn more than £30,000 – or £40,000 in London – pay up to the market rent
The BBC covering the costof providing free television licences for over-75s
Allowing councils in England and Wales to relax Sunday trading laws
Mr Osborne will also announce that the annual amount given to recipients of the highest military and civilian honours for bravery, the Victoria Cross and George Cross, is going to be increased to £10,000 a year. Recipients have traditionally received an annuity, which was worth £2,129 last year.