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The government's measures to address the rising cost of energy bills go nowhere near far enough
- Rishi Sunak, has chosen to prioritise Conservative voters – and hence his own leadership prospects
- The measures are a flat-rate, poorly targeted council tax rebate that 80% of households will benefit from
- More than 40% of its value will go to households in the top half of the income distribution
- While more than 600,000 low-income households will miss out
- The £200 rebate for all households will be taxed back through a £40-a-year surcharge for the next five years, which will push today’s cost pressures into the future.
- Low-income families have been at the sharp end of tax credit cuts and benefit freezes over the last decade, with many low-paid parents losing thousands of pounds a year as a result.
The savings paid for income tax cuts that disproportionately benefited better-off households;
- they were a political choice made by successive Conservative chancellors, supported between 2010 and 2015 by the Liberal Democrats.
- The cuts have left less affluent households particularly vulnerable to this cost-of-living squeeze
- Government support to help with rising energy bills should be targeted at those who need it most, through the tax credit and benefit system