Saturday, 8 December 2012

Cllr Geoff Juby on Taxation and TV liceneces

Liberal Democrat group Leader, Geoff Juby's column from this week's Medway Messenger - Needless to say I agree with Geoff on the Taxation!

In recent months there has been a lot of publicity given to the subject of taxation and benefits.  Are we in danger of following Greece, Spain and Ireland in running into massive deficits because of an inability to actually collect the taxes due? 

Major multinational corporations pay little or no UK tax – and many of the members of parliament, and the House of Lords,  who should be addressing this problem are themselves in a questionable situation with regard to their own tax payments.

Isn’t it time that companies took a pride in publicising their tax contributions instead of trying to avoid them?  Public opinion is a powerful sales tool – how many of us would actively support a commercial company who boasted of the millions paid into the exchequer each year!

The poor and disabled are suffering humiliating interviews and loss of income because of the publicity around a few false claimants, and it’s costing almost as much as the savings to fund the appeals and administration.  Apart from a very limited number we all pay what is now an unnecessary tax calling itself a television licence! 

Sometimes I wonder whether the BBC might be better accepting advertising like every other television channel – I have not been able to discern any particular commercial bias in the multiple channels available to us. Now nearly everyone has access to Freeserve, and I don’t think I am the only person to comment that the BBC news coverage can fall short of that provided by other channels. 

Proportionately the licence fee falls very heavily on low income families who may rely on television more than those who can afford foreign holidays, theatre trips and other entertainments.  Let’s hope that the Christmas telly is good, and in spite of current hard times, we all manage to enjoy the festive season.

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