Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Newspaper column 15 July 2015 - The Budget

Life in Parliament continues to give me firsts.  This week I attended the Budget reading for the first time.  As you may have seen on the TV, the House was packed and very noisy, but it was an amazing experience, especially as the Chancellor’s Budget was so far-reaching.

The Conservative Government continues to deliver on its manifesto promises.  The Budget was designed to deliver security to working people and to keep us moving from a low wage, high tax, high welfare economy to a higher wage, lower tax and lower welfare country.

Cornwall and our constituency featured strongly in the Budget.  The Chancellor spoke of the steps towards devolving more power to Cornwall in his speech and I will continue to work with the five other Cornish Conservative MPs to ensure that Cornwall has a solution that makes sense. 

Although not mentioned in the main speech, the following announcement was also made on Wednesday; “The government reaffirms its commitment to £7.2 billion investment in transport infrastructure in the South West over this Parliament. The government will provide local councils with funding to support the development of business cases for the North Devon Link Road, and the A391 in Cornwall.” 

The development of the A391 from the A30 into St Austell is extremely important and something that I campaigned on during the General Election.  St Austell needs improved connectivity to unlock inward investment and villages such as Roche, Bugle and others, will get a much-needed bypass.  I will continue to fight to ensure this new infrastructure becomes a reality.

The broader budget introduced many changes; the new National Living Wage combined with the income tax cuts are excellent news for hardworking people in St Austell and Newquay and shows we will deliver what we promised.  The rise in the personal allowance will mean lower taxes for around 48,851 working people here in St Austell and Newquay, with an estimated 939 people taken out of income tax altogether. These changes, along with the further reforms to tax credits, and the welfare cap, are designed to support people into work and make the welfare system sustainable for the future.

These reforms mean that it remains important that we attract new investment and jobs into our constituency.  Better-paid jobs and lower taxes will provide economic growth in our area and give local people a better standard of living with more money in their pockets.  Therefore, I will continue to focus on job creation. 

The measures introduced in respect of apprenticeships will also help our constituency and I strongly support this programme.  In an area dominated by small businesses, apprenticeships represent a way to bring continuity and growth to these businesses.

I would appreciate hearing your views on the Budget and any other matters that concern you.  For a direct response please email me on 

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