The Tory-led government’s VAT hikes on pasties, churches, fixed caravans and heritage buildings will hit the South West hard.
The budget has introduced 20% VAT on hot pasties, 20% VAT on improvements to church buildings, 20% VAT on improvements to listed buildings, and 20% VAT on holidays in fixed caravans.
For the heritage, tourism & leisure sector in the South West, already struggling in a tough economic climate, this is another body blow and the extra costs in alterations to listed buildings represents a possible future additional cost to Plymouth council taxpayers by hiking the cost of any necessary adaptations to the Civic Centre.
Sites like Woodlands Fort, Crownhill where local people are struggling with the cost of repairs before they even get to the desire to adapt and improve this community resource, will simply have to stand back and watch it decay.
The 20% pasty tax is already having an impact on local businesses and jobs, speaking in the budget debate at Westminster, Alison Seabeck MP said; “We also have a pasty industry in Devon. He is talking about job losses and I have already come across workers for pasty companies in Cornwall who live in Plymouth and who are already on a three-day week. It is already having an impact and it will get much worse.”
In votes in the House of Commons, Labour MP Alison Seabeck voted against the Pasty tax but despite a number of MPs rebelling against their government the majority failed to stand up for the interests of the region and voted for the tax hike on local businesses, tourists & consumers.
Plymouth’s Labour MP, Alison Seabeck said; “This is just another attack on people in Plymouth and across the South West by an increasingly out of touch Tory government. They’ve already hit working families with cuts to tax credits.
“Now they’re choosing to hit vital local industries – tourism and leisure; the 20% tax hike on pasties will have a disproportionate impact in the South West. This is an incompetent government which hasn’t fully thought through the implications for the public on jobs and living standards and whose priorities are all wrong.”
Councillor Tudor Evans, Leader of the Labour Group on Plymouth City Council said; “The Budget has not only produced a series of damaging tax hikes that will hit Plymouth hard but it has also shown that not all of Plymouth’s MPs will vote to support local jobs.
“I applaud Alison Seabeck and unusually Gary Streeter for opposing the pasty tax. Voters in Plymouth will be wondering why Oliver Colvile chose to turn his back on his constituency and local opinion to vote for the pasty tax.”Other news from Plymouth Labour