Last week, the Chancellor presented his Autumn Statement, so I wanted to send out a special newsletter summarising the changes and specifically what it means for residents and businesses in Amber Valley.
Yesterday, I was pleased to speak in Parliament on the Autumn Statement, which you can read in full here. Constituents will be particularly pleased by the support to pay their bills: the national living wage is up by nearly 10%, the state pension by 8.5% and benefits by the full rate of the consumer prices index from September. More unexpected was the increase in local housing allowance back to the 30th percentile, which is much needed.
I welcome the Autumn Statement, which outlines growth measures to back business and measures to make work pay. The Chancellor’s plan will increase business investment by £20 billion a year and deliver tax cuts for 29 million workers – the biggest tax cut on work since the 1980s.
In January 2023, the Prime Minister set out five priorities for government. Three were economic: to halve inflation, grow the economy, and reduce debt. Since then, inflation has halved, the economy has recovered more quickly from the pandemic than first thought, and debt is on track to fall.
Thanks to the stability this has brought, I am pleased to see that the Government is now able to focus on the long-term decisions required to strengthen our economy: reducing debt; cutting tax and rewarding hard work; building domestic, sustainable energy; supporting businesses; and delivering world-class education.
Families and individuals in Amber Valley will benefit from the cut in National Insurance and rise in the minimum wage, making sure that more money will go into and remain in people’s pockets each month. The cut in business tax, which provides relief for small retail, hospitality and leisure firms, will provide a needed nitro boost to our high streets. As a member of the Work and Pensions Select Committee, I am happy to see that our elderly and most vulnerable are also looked after by the Autumn Statement: the triple lock will be kept, and benefits will be uprated in line with inflation.
A reminder of the details of the key announcements that matter most for Amber Valley were:
Cuts in National Insurance
- The Chancellor announced a cut of the main rate of Class 1 National Insurance – paid by employees earning between £12,570 and £50,270 – from 12% to 10%. This cut will be effective from 6th January 2024 and will benefit 27 million working people.
- For those who are self-employed in the constituency, from 6th April 2024, you will no longer need to pay £3.45 per week. This will save the average self-employed person £192 per year. The main rate of National Insurance paid by the self-employed will also be cut from 9% to 8%.
Protecting the Triple Lock and benefit increases
- Having publicly spoken out about the need to uprate benefits in line with inflation, I welcome the fact that all working-age benefits will be increased in full by 6.7 per cent, boosting the incomes of 5.5 million households who receive Universal Credit by an average of £470 a year.
- Pensioners will benefit from the Autumn Statement. The triple lock has helped lift 250,000 older people out of poverty since it was introduced by the Conservatives in 2011. I am glad that the Government will continue to honour its commitment to the triple lock: pensions will be boosted by 8.5 per cent, ensuring dignity in older age for those who have worked their entire lives.
- The Government will also increase Local Housing Allowance rates, making 1.6 million families better off by an average of £800 in 2024-25.
Support for Business
- The Government is cutting business taxes by £11 billion – the biggest business tax cut in modern British history – by permanently enabling businesses to offset investments against their tax bills. For every pound a business invests, its taxes are cut by up to 25p. Companies can now permanently claim 100 per cent capital allowances on qualifying main rate plant and machinery investments. This will generate £3 billion of additional investment each year and £14 billion over the next five years.
- I have received lots of emails from constituents asking for me to urge for extensions of business rates reliefs. As such I am pleased to let you know that the Government is also freezing the business rates multiplier for small businesses for a fourth consecutive year, saving an average shop £1,650. It is also extending the 75% Retail, Hospitality and Leisure relief, meaning 230,000 properties will benefit from almost £2.4 billion in support, supporting small businesses in Amber Valley’s high streets and town centres.
Minimum wage increase
- The minimum wage will be raised from £10.42 per hour to £11.44 from April 2024. It will apply to those aged 21 or over, after an extension of the rate to 21 and 22 year olds. This means that full-time worker on the minimum wage will see their pay increase by over £1,800, the largest ever cash increase.
Alcohol duties – frozen
- I know that many have asked me to support consumers and protect Amber Valley’s pubs at the Autumn Statement. Indeed, as the Chancellor said in his speech, I know that for many people going to the pub has become more expensive.
- Therefore, I hope constituents will join me in welcoming the freeze on alcohol duty until 1st August 2024. This measure, in addition to the Brexit Pubs Guarantee (which confirms that the alcohol duty you pay for a drink on tap at your local pub will be less than what you will pay in a supermarket), will make having a pint more affordable for everyone.
As always, if there are any street repairs in your area, such as potholes, pavement repairs or broken street lights, you can report these issues and concerns to me quickly and easily here so I can ask for the repairs to be investigated and addressed.
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Promoted by Nigel Mills MP, of Unicorn House, Wellington Street, Ripley, Derbyshire, DE5 3EH.
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