Magazine article Public Finance

News: In Brief

Magazine article Public Finance

News: In Brief

Article excerpt

*The chancellor announced that the personal tax allowance is to rise from £4,895 to £5,035. Child benefit from April 10 will be £17.45 and tax-free childcare vouchers will increase from £50 to £55 per week. The stamp duty threshold on house purchase will rise from £120,000 to £125,000.

* Brown said there would be £970m for shared equity schemes to help 35,000 people become homeowners, including a pilot project with minimum holdings of 25%. Local communities would be permitted to retain more of the planning gains from developments.

* He announced that £250m would go to providing free off-peak national bus travel for every pensioner and disabled person by April 2008. Winter fuel payments would continue but there was no mention of payments to defray council tax.

* Scottish schools have been issued with guidelines on commercial activities. …

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