The Help to Buy scheme seems to be helping the Chairman of Persimmon Homes more than people looking to get on the property ladder. It was announced today that Persimmon, who benefit greatly from this Government scheme, gave the Chairman of the Company a bonus of £511 million.
I wanted the Chancellor to promise that he would get a grip of the situation. Instead we had a bland technical fudge. The Chancellor should reform the scheme and make sure the more houses are being built.
The UK has become a safe haven for some of the wealthiest people in the world who break international laws. A recent cross-party report by the Foreign Affairs Select Committee stated that the UK Government is not doing enough to keep our society free of this dirty money and should go further.
Labour has long called for an overseas register of interests so we can route out these dodgy dealings. The minister said that he wants to remain ‘consistent to our values’. Well, I don’t know what values the UK Government has but I know that people in Flintshire want a fair society where those who do wrong are held to account and cannot use the UK to harbour their ill gotten gains.
With local government budgets being slashed by the UK Government, police forces struggling to get by on the flat cash grant handed to them and the cost of living continually rising the Government need to take action to ensure that public sector pay is increased.
I am deeply concerned that any public sector pay awards, which are desperately needed, will have to be paid through local taxation. People in Delyn have to work hard for their wages and the UK Government is placing the burden on their shoulders. What we should do is pool our resources and ensure a fair redistribution of taxation from the whole country. Meaning that it is not merely wealthy regions, such as the south east of England, that can cope with these pressures but the whole nation.
The minister failed to promise to finance public sector pay increases from central government funds.
The cap on Public Sector Pay was introduced by this government and has ensured that those who work in our public services – such as police and prison officers, nurses, teachers and firefighters – have not seen a pay rise higher than 1% in years. When you take into account inflation is currently at 3% you can see that these hard working public servants have in reality faced a pay cut.
That’s why at Treasury Questions I called on the Chief Secretary to the Treasury to scrap the cap. She tried to muddy the waters saying no such cap exists. But ask any public sector worker and they will tell you with no doubt that it most certainly does.