March 10, 2017
Burnham-On-Sea's MP gives mixed reaction to this week's budget

Burnham-On-Sea's MP has given his reaction to this week's Budget, including the controversial changes to National Insurance Contributions for self employed workers.

James Heappey told "The big headlines from the budget fall into three categories for Burnham-On-Sea and the Wells Constituency."

"In the 'not too sure about this' pile are the changes to National Insurance Contributions for self-employed workers. The gap in taxes between employees and the self-employed is growing whilst at the same time, the new pension means that self-employed people will no longer get a lower amount than those who had paid NI as employees. Further work on maternity and paternity leave will close the gap further."

"But there is still real risk - and sometimes hardship - in being self-employed. There is no paid holiday, no paid sick leave and no certainty over what business might be like in a month or two's time. The tax code must recognise that difference and so I'm going to want to discuss this in much more detail with affected constituents and Ministers over the next few weeks."

"In the 'looks pretty good' pile is the mitigation announced for those businesses affected by the Business Rates Review. Admittedly, they are mostly transitional measures but it will make the impact less challenging for the businesses affected."

"And in the 'utterly brilliant' pile is the much-needed additional funding for adult social care as well as the money announced to fund the transition to the plans devised by local doctors for a better healthcare system in Somerset."

"I also very much like the money for GPs in A&Es. It shouldn't mask that we still have far too many unfilled GP posts in our local surgeries, but it is a long-overdue and very welcome development nonetheless."


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