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Windfall taxes on rip-off energy companies will help Brits

It was heartbreaking to read the reports in yesterday’s Sun from people reeling from rising costs.

But alas, they’re all too familiar worries as we face the worst cost-of-living crisis many of us have ever experienced.

We face a tsunami of hard-working people unable to pay their bills - be they food, energy or other essential costs that just keep mounting

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We face a tsunami of hard-working people unable to pay their bills – be they food, energy or other essential costs that just keep mounting
It was heartbreaking to read the reports in yesterday's Sun from people stricken with expense

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It was heartbreaking to read the reports in yesterday’s Sun from people stricken with expense

Just the other day, I was sitting in a coffee shop in my Harlow constituency chatting to the staff when one of them told me she works SEVEN days a week just to make ends meet.

Without those extra hours, she wouldn’t be able to pay her energy bills, she said. And of course, this workload affects not only her finances but also her quality of life because she cannot spend time with her family.

We face a tsunami of hard-working people unable to pay their bills – be they food, energy or other essential costs that just keep mounting.

Solving this problem must be a priority for the government. I applaud the action they’ve taken so far – cutting fuel taxes by 5p a liter, giving £150 council tax relief for those in bands A to D, raising the living wage, cutting energy bills later in year and cutting Social Security taxes for 70 percent of households.

But I’m afraid that’s not enough. Even taking all of this into account, people are still fighting by the millions across the UK.

What clearly needs to happen is that the government first introduces a windfall tax for oil companies.

BP and Shell alone will post £40bn in profits in 2022

The oil bosses are the new oligarchs. In short, they’re making money they wouldn’t have made if international wholesale fuel prices hadn’t gone through the roof.

And they’re kidding us at the pumps by refusing to lower petrol and diesel prices even if the international price falls. So an unexpected tax would be fair because the government could reallocate that money to lower energy bills for the low-income and the elderly.

I know there is resistance – especially from conservatives. But it’s not unconservative. Two Tory Prime Ministers have followed this course.

Margaret Thatcher, not known as Corbynista, introduced a lucky tax, as did David Cameron. Desperate times call for desperate measures.

The oil companies argue that an unexpected tax will deter investment and hurt jobs, but it rarely does. Even the head of BP commented that they have already made their investments in the UK and such a tax would not affect their obligations here.

We have to find money somewhere. It is unsustainable to keep increasing public debt, which alone is costing taxpayers £70bn in interest on the £2.2trillion we owe.

The government must also eliminate environmental taxes, which account for 25 percent of our energy bills. We cannot balance environmental protection on the backs of working people.

We have to find money somewhere. It is unsustainable to keep increasing public debt, which alone is costing taxpayers £70bn in interest on the £2.2trillion we owe.

Robert Halfon

The Government has slashed the foreign aid budget by £4billion and could divert those funds to cutting mounting bills. Then the chancellor should be able to reduce income tax by making savings in such areas.

We need to raise the threshold from which workers start paying them. Currently, anyone earning less than £12,570 a year is not taxed on their income.

We need to increase this number so fewer people see money taken out of their paychecks each month. This way they have more money to cover their bills.

As wages rise to keep up with inflation, the number of people benefiting from the current threshold is bound to decrease and we need to be more flexible.

Those opposed to an income tax cut argue that higher earners will benefit too, but the wealthy are relatively few and mostly benefit those who are struggling. The tax burden is the highest in 70 years and we need to reduce it.

The government must set up a Cost of Living Commission to scrutinize every single domestic policy for its impact on household budgets. It will be similar to the Office of Budgetary Responsibility.

I’m aware that some people in the party want to scrap the 1.25 percentage point increase in Social Security that took place last month. But there is an umbilical cord between my constituents and the NHS.

That extra £30billion from the Health and Social Security Contribution is needed to help cover the costs of the backlog in our hospitals caused by the pandemic and to improve care services. And Harlow is not alone in this.

bad practice

It’s a fairer tax than many alternatives because 70 percent of households don’t pay it.

There are other ways to get a handle on fuel bills. I agree with Fair Fuel UK that we should introduce a pump clock to ensure that if the global price of oil goes down, the price at the pump goes down too.

Currently this is taking forever to catch on and some oil companies have not even passed on the 5p fuel tax cut. We need a regulator to look out for bad practices and fine companies that clearly exploit drivers.

Our country needs to become more energy self-sufficient for the future as oil and gas prices are largely out of our control.

However, that will not immediately help the hard-working Brits, who are currently working every day and have very little to show for themselves.

Action must be taken urgently, and it must be done NOW.

Addressing this problem must be a priority for government, writes Robert Halfon

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Addressing this problem must be a priority for government, writes Robert HalfonPhoto credit: Rex

https://www.the-sun.com/news/5327859/hard-up-brits-four-vital-things-boris-must-do/ Windfall taxes on rip-off energy companies will help Brits

DevanCole

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