Income tax charge for tax year 2019-20

Finance (No. 3) Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 9:56 am on 27th November 2018.

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Question proposed, That the clause stand part of the Bill.

Photo of Nadine Dorries Nadine Dorries Conservative, Mid Bedfordshire

With this it will be convenient to discuss the following:

Clause 3 stand part.

Clause 4 stand part.

Photo of Mel Stride Mel Stride Financial Secretary to the Treasury and Paymaster General

Clause 1 provides the charge for income tax for 2019-20, clauses 3 and 4 set the main, default and savings rates of income tax for 2019-20. Income tax is one of the most important revenue streams for the Government, and raised nearly £181 billion last year. The power to charge income tax is legislated annually in the Finance Bill, and is central because it allows for income tax to be collected in order to fund the vital public services on which we all rely. Clause 1 grants this power for 2019-20. Clause 3 keeps the basic, higher and additional main rates of income tax at the same level as last year for England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Clause 4 keeps the basic, higher and additional rates of default and savings rates of income tax at the same level as last year for the whole of the United Kingdom.

We are supporting working people by increasing the tax-free personal allowance and the point at which people pay the higher rate of tax to £12,500 and £50,000 respectively. Keeping rates the same alongside increasing the personal allowance and higher rate threshold means people can keep more of what they earn. By April 2019 we will have cut taxes for 32 million people and taken 1.74 million of the lowest-paid out of income tax altogether since 2015. Clause 1 ensures that the Government can collect income tax in the tax year 2019-20 in order to fund key spending commitments. Clauses 3 and 4 ensure that the rates of income tax remain unchanged and make sure that hard-working people keep more of what they earn and that those who earn the most continue to pay their fair share. I commend the clauses to the Committee.

Photo of Kirsty Blackman Kirsty Blackman SNP Deputy Leader, Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Economy) 10:00 am, 27th November 2018

I hope the Minister can answer my question in the positive. In the clauses, the devolved and reserved aspects are split. They are considered separately, which makes a huge amount of sense. I asked the Minister earlier whether he would consider doing that in future years for all clauses, particularly those similar to clause 5. I am not expecting a positive, definite answer that he will do that in future years, but will he commit to considering splitting the devolved and reserved aspects on income tax in future years, so that the House can better scrutinise legislation?

Photo of Mel Stride Mel Stride Financial Secretary to the Treasury and Paymaster General

I thank the hon. Lady for her question, which we touched on in the Committee of the whole House. She will be aware that clause 3 is subject to the English votes for English laws process because non-savings earnings are devolved to Scotland, so that clause only applies to Northern Ireland, Wales and England, while clause 4 on the savings and dividend rates applies UK-wide. I understand her point and we will be happy to look at that in the future. As things stand, we support where we are at the moment in the division of those particular clauses.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause 1 accordingly ordered to stand part of the Bill.

Clause 2