Jo calls for tax threshold to be raised further and faster

During Women and Equalities Questions Jo Swinson MP asked the Home Secretary to back proposals for faster implementation of the £10,000 income tax threshold

Home Secretary Theresa May revealed that more than half of the 1.1million people who have been taken out of paying income tax as a result of the Coalition Government’s tax reforms are women. Jo then urged her to press Treasury colleagues to go further and faster with this policy in the forthcoming Budget.

The Minister replied that the Treasury was committed to the Coalition agreement which includes raising the threshold to £10,000 over the course of this Parliament but it was for the Treasury to comment further.

Commenting, Jo Swinson said:

“People should be able to keep more of the money they earn. That’s why Liberal Democrats believe the tax-free threshold should rise to £10,000. That’s an extra £700 a year for hard-pressed taxpayers and would make sure that millions of the lowest paid workers and those working part time don’t have to pay any income tax at all.”

“We’re pushing for faster tax cuts for hard-working people that will put an extra £60 in their pockets every month.”

The full text of Jo’s question to Home Secretary Theresa May and her response is as follows:

Jo Swinson (East Dunbartonshire) : How many women have ceased to be liable for income tax since May 2010.

The Secretary of State for the Home Department and Minister for Women and Equalities (Mrs Theresa May): The Government are committed to supporting working women. We have increased the personal income tax allowance in successive Budgets, so that anyone earning below £8,105 in 2012-13 will pay no income tax whatsoever. Those changes will take 1.1 million low-income people out of tax altogether, and more than half of them will be women.

Jo Swinson: I strongly support the coalition Government policy of raising the tax threshold to help people on low and middle incomes, which, of course, particularly helps women, who are more likely to work part-time. Would not more women benefit if the Government went further and faster towards raising the threshold to £10,000, and will my right hon. Friend encourage her Treasury colleagues to make that a priority in the forthcoming Budget?

Mrs May: My hon. Friend is tempting me to go down a route that would be straying on to the role of the Chancellor of the Exchequer. Decisions on the way in which we will achieve that coalition commitment will be taken in future Budgets

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