2009 budget: tax hike for the rich
Susanna Wilkey A TAX hike for the rich is among the steps Alistair Darling announced today that he believes will drag Britain out of its worst recession in 50 years. During the chancellor's second budget he declared income tax for those earning more than
A TAX hike for the rich is among the steps Alistair Darling announced today that he believes will drag Britain out of its worst recession in 50 years.
During the chancellor's second budget he declared income tax for those earning more than �150,000 will rise to 50 per cent from April 2010 in a bid to raise money to plug the ever increasing hole of debt.
Borrowing will reach a whopping �175billion this year and while the chancellor predicted the economy will shrink 3.5 per cent in 2009 he expected it would pick up in 2010, expanding by 1.25 per cent.
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Pub punters can expect to pay an extra 1pence a pint after alcohol taxes went up two per cent and fuel duty is rising 2pence a litre from September.
The final go-ahead was also given for the much-talked about �2,000 car scrappage scheme to encourage drivers of vehicles more than 10-years-old to trade their car in for a new younger, more efficient model.
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To the relief of headteachers across the country funding has been allocated to create 54,000 new places in sixth form education and �1.7billion for the Job Centre network.
On the day unemployment hit 2.1million Darling promised �250million funding to help people get work experience in growth industries and training or jobs for all long-term unemployed under 25s.
�500million will be used to kickstart stalled housing projects and shared equity mortgage schemes will benefit from an extra �80million.
The chancellor said: "Today's budget will continue to help people through this global recession and prepare Britain for the opportunities of the future.
"Firstly there will be help now to get people back into work quickly and to support businesses and homeowners facing problems.
"And secondly there will be measures to support investment and growth and green industries of the future while the recovery takes hold and ensure that our public finances are sustainable.
"We will protect investment in schools and hospitals and other key public services and will work to rebuild our financial services.
"And taken together this budget will build on the strengths of the British economy and its people, speed the recovery providing jobs and spreading prosperity."
The annual limit for tax-free ISAs will rise to more than �10,000 for the over-50s this year and for everyone else next year and child tax credit will rise by �20 by 2010.
Darling also pledged Britain would cut its carbon emissions by 34 per cent by 2020 and �1billion will go towards supporting low-carbon industries.
Grandparents of working age who care for their grandchildren will now see that work count towards their entitlement for the basic state pension and winter fuel allowance is to be maintained at �250 for over 60s and �400 for over-80s for another year.