Summary of 2011 Budget.


Income tax
From April 2012 personal allowance will increase by £630 to £8105.
This increase won’t be restricted to basic rate tax payers so no one else will be pulled into the higher rate tax band.
The 50% tax rate will be reviewed and potentially removed if it has not generated sufficient revenue.
National insurance
Income tax & National Insurance may be merged to a single tax if it is viable to do so.
However, this will not result in pensioners having to pay National Insurance.
The 1% National Insurance increase scheduled for April 2011 will go ahead as planned.
Inheritance tax
The Inheritance Tax Rate will be reduced by 10% for anyone who leaves 10% or more of their estate to charity.
Other tax
From April 2012 the thresholds for Income Tax, National Insurance, ISAs and Inheritance Tax will increase by the CPI measure of inflation instead of by RPI.
Taxes on owners of high value property will be reformed.
Measures to clamp down on tax avoidance will be introduced.
Income tax relief on the Enterprise Investment Scheme will increase from 20% to 30% in April, 2011.

First time buyers
£250 million commitment has been made to help first time buyers.
A new shared equity scheme – First Buy – will help 10,000 families to purchase a new build home.
Mortgage Support
The Support for Mortgage Interest scheme will be extended for another year.
Council tax
Every council across the UK has agreed to freeze council tax for the coming year.
Water bills
Public money will be used to help cut water bills for customers in the South West of England.

Alcohol & Tobacco
A reduced rate of tax will apply to low strength beers from 1st October, 2011.
A higher rate of tax will be applied to high strength beers from this date.
There will be no change to any other alcohol duty rates.
Tobacco duty rates to increase by 2% above inflation.
Tax on hand-rolled tobacco will increase by an additional 10%.

Fuel duty will be cut by 1p a litre from 6pm today (23rd March, 2011).
The planned 1p increase in fuel duty scheduled for April will be pushed back a year.
The subsequent inflation-linked rise scheduled for April 2012 will be pushed back until the following summer.
A Fair Fuel Stabiliser will be introduced from tomorrow – fuel duty will go down when fuel prices increase, & go up when fuel prices fall.
The fuel duty escalator will be scrapped for the rest of this Parliament.
A rural fuel duty scheme will be piloted.
Approved mileage allowance
Approved mileage allowance payments will increase to 45p a mile – 39p a mile for the first 10,000 miles & 5p a mile thereafter.
It will also be paid for volunteers travelling as passengers.
Road tax
Vehicle Exercise Duty will increase by inflation only.
£200 million will be invested in regional railways.
The planned increase in air passenger duty will be delayed until next year.

Employment & Education
A new start up scheme to support entrepreneurs – Start Up Britain – will be launched.
21 new enterprise zones will be introduced.
Entrepreneur’s Relief will be doubled to £10 million on 6th April.
24 new university technical colleges will be set up.
100,000 places in new work experience schemes will be introduced.
50,000 apprenticeship places will be created over the next four years.

State pension
A new, single tier, flat rate pension based on contributions will be introduced subject to a consultation.
This will be worth approximately £140 a week but it will take years to implement.
Current pensioners won’t be affected by the change.
Plans to introduce automatic increases to the State Pension Age have been brought forward subject to review.
Public sector pensions
Public sector workers will have to increase their pension contributions by approx. 3%.
The government will consult on scrapping final salary pensions for public sector workers & replacing them with career average pension benefits.

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