New Clause. — (Repeal of s. 36 of 8 and 9 Geo. V, c. 15.)

Part of Orders of the Day — Finance Bill. – in the House of Commons on 8th July 1924.

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Photo of Mr Philip Snowden Mr Philip Snowden , Colne Valley

The point of the Clause, which I can dispose of in a very few sentences, is to relieve Super-taxpayers of a very considerable part of the Income Tax and Super-tax which they pay under the existing method of assessment If the suggestion were adopted it would add to the injustice which may be felt by certain grades of Super-taxpayers. It would destroy the fairly regular grading which prevails at present in the assessment of Super-tax. The operation of this Clause would be to give far greater relief to Super-taxpayers with large incomes than to Super-taxpayers who have smaller incomes. For instance, the tax relief which would be given under the Clause to a. Super-taxpayer who was just above the exemption limit for Super-tax, say with an income of£2,100 a year, would be 1.86 per cent., but in the case of an income of£4,000 the effect would be a reduction of 10 per cent., and when we get to an income of£50,000 a year there would be a reduction of 14 per cent. The hon. Member would have no reason for saying that if this concession were made it would be a relief to the Income Taxpayer. It would not. I do not know if he knows what his proposal would cost. It would cost£20,000,000 a year. If I made that remission I should have to find the revenue from some other source, and there is only one source from which I could find it. I should have to impose increased taxation upon the same class that I have relieved by accepting this Clause. In the last two years Income Taxpayers have had remissions of taxation amount to£80,000,000 a year, and an enormous part of that has gone to the very people for whom the hon. Member is now pleading, and for whom he is asking a further remission of£20,000,000.