Fund the biggest pressures nationally and the rest through a progressive local tax

By Paul Wheeler | 06 February 2018
  • Paul Wheeler

For those intimate with the minutiae of Labour Party politics, there are many reasons why MP Chris Williamson should have been removed as a front bench representative. So it is intriguing that he was ejected for advocating an increase in property taxes.

For such a dry topic, local government finance has been the graveyard for many national politicians. Margaret Thatcher’s downfall was less to do with the miners’ strike and de-industrialisation and much more related to her advocacy of the poll tax. The subsequent fear of the property owning classes has meant that we have failed to upgrade the council tax in England since its introduction in 1991. Reform of local government finance is firmly in the ‘too difficult to do’ box.

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