Budget 99: For Better and Worse; We Put Our Case Studies through Gordon's Number Cruncher

The Mirror (London, England), March 10, 1999 | Go to article overview

Budget 99: For Better and Worse; We Put Our Case Studies through Gordon's Number Cruncher


SINGLE MUM: Allison Baroody

Name: Allison Baroody, 31. Address: Poole, Dorset. Occupation: None. Children: Rasheed, 11, and twins Leena and Leila, 8.

Weekly income:

Income Support pounds 86.78

Child Benefit pounds 30.05

Weekly outgoings:

Rent pounds 102 (met by DSS)

Council tax Exempt

Water Paid by DSS

Insurance None

Savings/Pension None

Gas None

Electricity pounds 25.50

Car insurance pounds 4 (Her dad pays it)

Road tax pounds 2.88

Petrol pounds 10

Drinks None

Cigarettes pounds 22

Verdict: "Overall I am quite pleased with it as I wasn't expecting much.

"Child benefit has been increased and that's very welcome.

"But there was nothing about how he would help single mothers like me back to work or how he would provide more childcare and how I could pay for it.

"I would like to get back to work but I would lose benefit.

"So I want to be sure that I wouldn't be any worse off than I am now.

"Cigarettes are up 17.5p a packet - and that's a lot."

BETTER OFF BY pounds 1.86

LOW EARNERS: The Bevingtons

Name: Chris Bevington, 36, and Ros, 36.

Address: Redruth, Cornwall.

Occupation: Chris is a supply teacher while Ros works part-time in an off-licence.

Children: Ben, four, Jessica, two, William, one.

Weekly income:

Wages pounds 25/pounds 60

Family credit pounds 80

Child benefit pounds 30.05

Weekly outgoings:

Mortgage pounds 21

Council tax pounds 7.70

Water pounds 4.60

House insurance: pounds 2.30

Savings/Pension None

Gas bottle pounds 1

Electricity pounds 17.50

Car insurance pounds 3.90

Road Tax pounds 2.88

Petrol pounds 17.50

Cider pounds 1.50

Hand-rolled tobacco pounds 3.50

Verdict: "It's not bad at all," said Chris. "We bought a smaller car years ago thinking it would be taxed more lightly and the Government has finally caught up with it.

"I don't mind the loss of mortgage tax relief so long as interest rates stay down.

"The increase in child benefit is good and so is replacing the married allowance with a benefit for couples with children instead.

"I'd like to have seen more money spent on nursery places and on bringing down school class sizes."

BETTER OFF BY pounds 2.45

HIGHER EARNER: Jason Mills

Name: Jason Mills, 30, and Sally Dewing, 30.

Address: Walsham, Norfolk. Occupation: Jason is an electrician and Sally works part-time for a sales and promotions firm. They run two cars.

Children: Joshua, seven, and Oliver, four.

Weekly income

Earnings pounds 470/pounds 20

Child benefit pounds 20.75

Weekly outgoings:

Mortgage pounds 74

Council tax pounds 10.60

Water pounds 4.60

House insurance pounds 5

Endowments: pounds 13

Personal pension: pounds 17.25

Gas pounds 9

Electricity pounds 10

Car insurance pounds 8.50/pounds 5

Road Tax pounds 2.88/pounds 2.88

Petrol pounds 15

Diesel pounds 10

Cigarettes pounds 11

Verdict: "Its a very good budget for families and pensioners have done very well," said Sally.

"But they have hit motorists again which I think is unfair. In an ideal world we would use public transport. But in the real world we need cars.

"They have hit cigarettes again but left drink alone. Yet alcohol can do just as much harm to your health as smoking.

"And losing mortgage tax relief next year will leave us nearly pounds 18 a month worse off. …

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