23 AUGUST 2010
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The government of David Cameron last week formerly responded to a large petition complaining of the hike in Air Passenger Duty (APD). The tax increase is due 1 November.
A rise in the duty of up to 112% was quoted by the official petitioner.
First the definite good news as quoted in the official Downing Street rejoinder.
“The Government does not in general earmark revenue for environmental purposes, as it can create inefficiencies in both revenue raising and spending”.
Downing Street is admitting for the first time that APD is just more revenue for the Treasury kitty. What a touch of honesty! Does “The Government” mean this government, or any government?
The riposte then goes on to say:
“The Chancellor announced at the June Budget statement that the Government will explore changes to the aviation tax system, and that major changes will be subject to consultation”.
Perhaps the Chancellor is trying to locate the Transport Minister to hear his views?
Is the industry being consulted?
“The existing rates of Air Passenger Duty and the rates applicable from November this year were set and legislated by the previous Government.”
A classic reply. Blame the preceding government.
Parliament returns on Monday 6 September for two weeks. The House will rise again for the Conference recess on Thursday 16 September and will not sit until Monday 11 October.
Will any Conservative or Lib Dem be brave enough to ask the Prime Minster in Question Time if he was going to delay the APD rise? (We assume HM’s loyal Opposition will stay quiet – they have nothing to be proud about).
But more to the point will the PM actually consult?
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