Julian Knight speaks about the Budget

This was a Budget for the homeowners, hard-working families, savers, taxpayers and business owners of Solihull. This government is on the side of hard workers and wealth creators in our society and this is highlighted by the Chancellor’s slashing of business taxes.

I’m delighted to see that the Chancellor has green lighted Michael Heseltine’s idea of a single competitive pot of funding for local enterprise. The business owners and employers of Solihull will be able to access key funds to help them grow as a result. Meanwhile, the lowering of corporation tax will encourage business and investment from abroad, the message is loud and clear – the UK and Solihull is open for business and investment.  

In their last year in office, Labour borrowed a staggering £159bn, this year we will be borrowing far less £114bn. At the same time the government is delivering record low interest rates and employment in the economy is on the increase, all this despite the Eurozone crisis.

With memories of the 2012 Olympics still fresh in our minds, parents will be particularly pleased to see an extra £560,000 going to fund sport in primary schools across Solihull Borough.  This should help secure yet more sporting glory for Solihull in the future.

Would be first time buyers and families looking to take the next step on the property ladder will be delighted at the advent of the help-to-buy and mortgage guarantee schemes. The Conservatives were the first party to champion homeownership in this country and thirty years later we are at it again.

Working families too will be cheered at the announcement of a major tax break on childcare costs. The high cost of childcare is a major drag on family finances and a barrier to the careers of many women, by acting in this way the Chancellor is helping break through the glass ceiling.

Motorists so roundly punished and vilified by Labour when it was in power, will get a pleasant surprise for once at the pumps with September’s fuel duty rise cancelled. The cost of petrol is now 13p cheaper a litre than it would be under Labour’s fuel duty escalator plans.

I am particularly pleased to see that the Chancellor continues to resist the siren calls of the Liberal Democrats and Labour for a so-called mansion tax. This un-costed proposal, passionately supported by Lorely Burt MP for Solihull, would set us on the dangerous path to a general property tax. No one really believes that the Lib Democrat and Labour tax would stop at £2m properties - it could end up hitting the pockets of many Silhillian homeowners, it must be fought at all costs.