Clause 131 — Indexed Rate Bands for 2003–04: PAYE Deductions Etc

Part of Finance Bill – in the House of Commons at 1:30 pm on 14th May 2003.

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Photo of Mr Howard Flight Mr Howard Flight Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury 1:30 pm, 14th May 2003

The clause extends by one month the date on which statutory inflation-linked changes to income tax bands must be made to PAYE deductions. It changes from May to the first pay day after 14 June. Essentially, it short-changes taxpayers by £10 as a result of the Chancellor introducing the Budget later than usual. People have received no apology. They will get the money back: in a sense, it is a £20 million interest-free loan from taxpayers to the Government.

Such disregard of ordinary people is objectionable. Why cannot the Government get their act together? They were able to charge increased national insurance contributions with effect from May, but here they are messing about with ordinary people, who were expecting to see income tax band adjustments in their May salary. It may be a small matter, but it represents the arrogance of the Government, who could not care less about short-changing people a pound or two here or there.