§ 3.45 p.m.
§ The Chairman
The first Amendment to Clause 12 which is selected is on page 2861 of the Notice Paper, in page 7, line 21, at the end to insert a new subsection (3). The Amendments which precede it on the Notice Paper are relevant to new Clauses. I will give hon. Members the numbers of the Clauses if they want them.
§ Mr. Douglas Houghton (Sowerby)
Do I understand, Sir Charles, that it was your wish that in debating this Amendment we should associate with it the fourth Amendment on the same page, page 7, line 27, at the end to insert:and for references to sixty pounds (which relate to the amount of the relief) there shall be substituted references to seventy-five poundsand the penultimate Amendment on the following page, in page 7, line 27, at the end to insert:(4) In section two hundred and seventeen of the Income Tax Act, 1952 (Claimant depending on services of a daughter), for the reference to forty pounds (indicating the amount of relief) there shall be substituted a reference to fifty pounds.
§ The Chairman
"Penultimate" is not quite the right word, because there are three other Amendments after that, but I know which one the hon. Member means.
§ Mr. Houghton
I beg to move, in page 7, line 21, at the end to insert:(3) In sections two hundred and fourteen and two hundred and fifteen of the Income Tax Act, 1952 (which refer respectively to a person taking charge of widower's or widow's children or acting as his or her housekeeper and to a relative taking charge of unmarried person's young brother or sister) for the references to sixty pounds (which indicate the amount of relief) there shall be substituted references to seventy-five pounds.This is an Amendment to increase the tax relief for a taxpayer who has a housekeeper. This is the third time that I have moved an Amendment to the same effect. I did so in 1952, when the housekeeper allowance stood at £50, and in 904 1953, when the Chancellor proposed to increase it to £60 and we on these benches moved to increase it to £75. I cannot see why it is that I have to be the champion of taxpayers who have housekeepers. We now have a Chancellor who ought to be championing them. Recently, he said that he was in favour of wives being treated properly, which, in a bachelor, is a noble sentiment. I am sure that he is equally in favour of taxpayers who have housekeepers being treated properly. That would be a noble sentiment in the Chancellor too, because as the law stands the bachelor cannot claim the housekeeper allowance unless he has the custody of younger brothers or sisters who qualify for a child allowance.
The history of this allowance has been stated in earlier speeches on this subject. It began in 1918. In 1920, the allowance was raised to £45, when the additional personal relief for a wife was £90. In 1924, it was increased to £60, when the wife relief still stood at £90. In the crisis Budget of 1931 the housekeeper relief was reduced to £50 and the wife allowance reduced to £50, also. Then the housekeeper allowance remained at £50, until 1953, by which time the wife allowance had risen to £90 a year once more.
The wife allowance has since become £100, the difference between the single personal relief of £140 and the relief for a married man of £240. That was done in 1955. The housekeeper allowance remains the same at £60. So these two facts emerge: first, that the allowance for a housekeeper is just the same as it was thirty-four years ago; and, secondly, that whereas it is now two-fifths of the allowance for a wife, it was a higher proportion of the married allowance thirty-four years ago. We propose that it should now become three-quarters of the allowance for a wife.
In our search for grounds upon which these personal reliefs may be adjusted from time to time, we naturally turn to the report of the Radcliffe Commission on the Taxation of Profits and Income to see whether that Commission laid down any principles in the matter. We find that it not only failed to do so but, in fact, failed to find any. In paragraph 209 of its second Report the Committee will see that the Radcliffe Commission was of opinion that, in the main, the adjustment of these personal reliefs was largely a budgetary matter, and not one upon 905 which principles of abstract justice or other theoretical questions could be laid down. So there is nothing really to guide us in the principle of the matter; we can only use our best judgment of what seems to be right taking one personal relief with another.
Nor do we find that in the past Chancellors have found it necessary to adjust all the personal reliefs at the same time, because in 1952 the married allowance was increased but not the housekeeper allowance. In 1953, the housekeeper allowance was increased, but not the married allowance; and in 1955 the married allowance was increaed again, but no corresponding increase was given in the housekeeping allowance. So if one is to look at the sequence of adjustment of personal reliefs, one might say that the turn of the housekeeper allowance has now come.
I do not know what would be the cost of this improvement in the housekeeper relief. The best estimate I can make is that there are between 200,000 and 250,000 housekeepers in respect of whom taxpayers claim this relief. Basing some calculations, however imperfect, on Table 21 on page 50 of the one hundredth Report of the Commissioners of Inland Revenue, my estimate is that the cost of this increased relief would be about £500,000 for a full year. I may be wrong and possibly the Financial Secretary will have a more accurate estimate than that.
There are obvious arguments in favour of a liberal relief for a housekeeper, bearing in mind that this relief is granted only to widows and widowers with or without young children to take care of. There has been some difference of opinion as to whether this allowance should be granted to widows and widowers without young children, and the Royal Commission has something to say about this. Its conclusions were unfavourable to the continuance of the allowance for widows or widowers who have no young children. It thought that their position was really indistinguishable from many single persons with households, who, therefore, might feel moved, owing to their occupation or other circumstances, to employ a housekeeper.
The Chancellor has not come forward with any alteration in the structure of the relief, and we feel that the small improvement we now propose could safely be 906 made, entirely without prejudice to reconsideration later of the principles underlying this relief and the conditions upon which it is granted. We on these benches realise that if the Chancellor wished to combine a higher relief for those with young children with the withdrawal of the relief from those without young children it would be necessary to await another time for any alteration to be made, since it could scarcely be made as an Amendment of the Clause from this side of the Committee. We feel, however, that the Chancellor may be able to accede to the proposal for a small improvement in the housekeeper relief.
Housekeepers are difficult to come by in present circumstances. Those who have not relatives willing to act must employ housekeepers, and it could scarcely be said that tax relief of £60 a year is any compensation for the additional expense involved. I realise that none of these reliefs can really be equated to the amount of actual expenditure on the part of the taxpayer. Various authorities have said in the past that they are merely part of the graduation principle of our Income Tax and that they are a recognition of different degrees of family responsibility, imposing different burdens on taxpayers which may ultimately affect their ability to pay.
Linked with this Amendment, Sir Charles, is the one which is to be found last but three on page 2862, and perhaps I may be permitted to say a word or two about it. In a way this is linked with the housekeeper relief, though the circumstances of granting it are different and the amount is also different. This has been debated before and, more recently, on 11th June, 1953, when my hon. and learned Friend the Member for Edge Hill (Mr. A. J. Irvine) moved an Amendment to increase the allowance from £25 to £40. I am glad to say that this was one of the occasions when the Chancellor was in an accommodating mood and the Amendment was accepted. So, since 1953, this allowance has been £40. Prior to that, it was £25 and had not been altered for thirty years.
This relief, which I am sure must be granted comparatively rarely today, is granted to an aged or infirm taxpayer who maintains a daughter to look after him. I can find no figures which show how many people are in receipt of this 907 relief. I am sure that the numbers must be small. The cost of granting a modest improvement from £40 to £50 would, I suggest, be negligible. Here again, when a relief has not been increased for thirty years, and then only from £25 to £40, we think that some upward adjustment is now due.
Finally, linked also with this Amendment is the relief granted to a taxpayer who maintains a dependent relative. There is nothing necessarily in common between housekeepers and dependent relatives. What they do have in common, however, is that the amount of relief is the same, though that is not to say that it need necessarily remain the same, and from these benches on an earlier occasion we moved an Amendment to improve the housekeeper allowances, without moving an Amendment to give a corresponding increase to those who maintain dependent relatives.
This relief stands at £60, having been increased from £50 in 1953. Since then, the upper limit of income of the dependent relative in respect of whom the relief may be claimed has been raised from time to time to take account of the upward movement of the National Insurance retirement pension. There is a big difference today between the upper income limit of the dependent relative who still qualifies for relief and the upper income limit of the dependent relative when the relief was first introduced.
It could be argued that lifting the relatives' income ceiling every time the National Insurance pension has been increased is a form of compensation for the fall in the value of money. Had this limit not been increased in this way many claims would have become invalid on the raising of the retirement pension. But since the higher retirement pension is mainly to meet the increased cost of living, I think it just and proper that the income limit of the dependent relative should be raised in the way that the Chancellor has raised it in the past and again proposes to raise it in Clause 12.
Although that is of benefit to taxpayers, in our view it does not replace the need for a small improvement in the amount of the relief itself. Here again, the Radcliffe Commission, in its second Report, had some comments to make on the 908 nature and conditions of granting this relief, but we think that, failing proposals to alter the structure of the relief, a small improvement is appropriate in the meantime.
I cannot say that the cost would be extremely small. There appear to be many more dependent relatives than housekeepers, and on my calculations it is likely that the cost of meeting the improvement for dependent relatives might be just short of £3 million. That, again, is the roughest estimate.
I am aware that there are features about this relief which perhaps before long may need attention. For example, there is the growing number of claims on behalf of persons now resident and working in this country who claim to be maintaining dependent relatives overseas. Those claims are not free from difficulty from an administrative point of view, but in making this proposal it is not our purpose to discriminate between one type of claimant and another. It is the duty of the Inland Revenue to see that those who make claims satisfy the Income Tax Acts and prove that they are doing what they declare themselves to be doing in maintaining their dependent relatives.
Those are the three Amendments which are linked. We on these benches are not saying to the Financial Secretary that it is all or nothing. We are willing to concede to him the right to select which of these reliefs he feels able to make. We hope that he will be able to make a move towards our wishes in this matter. Surely the concessions in the Finance Bill cannot be confined to functional buttons, whatever the Chancellor's interest in them may be, to clogs, whatever my constituency interest in them may be, or to shopping baskets, whatever may be the lack of interest in them among men in the Committee. I therefore hope that now that we have come to a change of scene, now that a new team comes on to bowl, we shall get some concession from the Chancellor on these personal reliefs.
§ Mr. Ronald Bell (Buckinghamshire, South)
I hope that the proposals which have been outlined will have sympathetic consideration by the Financial Secretary. They are not unfamiliar proposals at this stage of a Finance Bill and it seems to me that, on principle, they have a certain amount of merit.
909 The idea of the system of allowances is to ensure that a man's assessable income is based upon a due regard of the burdens which he has to carry, and in that respect there can be little doubt that the burden of a man who has to have a housekeeper to look after his children is assessed too low at present. I have always said that if a man's wife dies, and he has to engage a housekeeper to look after his young children, it costs him more than if his wife were still alive. Since the allowance for a wife is £100, it seems extremely modest and reasonable to suggest an allowance for a housekeeper of £75.
Equally, the allowance for a daughter upon whose services the taxpayer is dependent is assessed too low at its present figure if one compares it with the existing allowances for a wife and for children. I do not think that the case for other dependent relatives is quite as strong as in those two cases. Indeed, the hon. Member for Sowerby (Mr. Houghton) recognised some degree of merit in the three proposals which he put forward and said that he thought that they differed somewhat among themselves.
I feel that the stronger merit lies in the case of the taxpayer who needs a housekeeper to look after dependent children and I believe that the Government would be making a valuable concession if they made a concession limited to that class of case. It is true that at the moment the housekeeper allowance is not confined to such cases where there are dependent children, but there is no reason why a distinction should not be introduced in the amount of the allowance, depending on whether there are children.
The hon. Member for Sowerby suggested that the Government might like to do a deal by dropping the housekeeper allowance where there are no children and using the funds thus released to increase the allowance where there are dependent children. That might introduce some injustice, but the Government might leave the allowance unchanged where there are no dependent children and increase it where there are. I am sure that if that were done a somewhat overdue adjustment would be made in these tax allowances.
§ Mr. A. J. Irvine (Liverpool, Edge Hill)
I hope that the Government will give serious thought to the representations made in this matter from both sides of the Committee.
If I may say so with respect, my hon. Friend the Member for Sowerby (Mr. Houghton) covered the ground with such cogency that not much remains to be said. As he pointed out, the Royal Commission has not assisted the Committee on this matter. For many years consideration of the appropriate relativity from the tax point of view of the wife and the housekeeper was dealt with by the Government by the expression of view that this was a matter particularly appropriate for consideration by the Royal Commission. The Royal Commission has now made its second Report and, as my hon. Friend has pointed out, since it has made no contribution to the problem the matter comes back here for consideration, and the best we can do is to apply common sense to our consideration of it.
The Royal Commission said:Since we cannot extract principles to bear upon the subject we do not think that we can usefully make recommendations upon it.It is in that void that the Committee now has to determine the common sense of the matter, and I suggest that it is that the allowance for a housekeeper should not, in principle, be less than that for a wife. Although my hon. Friend has not gone so far as to propose that, I suggest that that is the logic and common sense of the matter.
The following factors are relevant in this connection. First, there is no reason to assume that a housekeeper will be less or more economical than a wife, or will give a greater or lesser proportion of her time to the care of the household. I would find it surprising if any Member on either side of the Committee felt inclined to argue the contrary of that proposition. The second factor is that the housekeeper is less likely than the wife to go out to work to add to the income of the household. She rightly regards herself as already employed, in her capacity as housekeeper. The wife who does not regard herself as the employee of her husband looks at the prospect of outside work somewhat differently.
A further factor is that the sense of obligation of the housekeeper to the 911 household will normally be less than that of the wife, and this may well add to the financial burden of the taxpayer employing the housekeeper. A housekeeper may reasonably insist upon conditions of employment which cost money and which might be thought unreasonable if they were demanded by a wife. A housekeeper might say, "I will not stay if I cannot have a television set". That is a rather less startling proposition coming from a housekeeper than it would be coming from a wife. Bearing these points in mind, and remembering, also, that for a widower with young children it may be of the greatest importance, for the welfare of the family and his children, that a housekeeper should be employed, I ask the Government to give serious consideration to the matter.
As I understand, we are also discussing the question of the services of a daughter. During the Committee stage of the Finance Bill of 1953 I had the honour to move an Amendment to raise from £25 to £40 the allowance for a claimant who was infirm and compelled to depend upon the services of a daughter. Somewhat to my surprise, and certainly to my great satisfaction, the Government accepted the Amendment. I hope that they will accept the proposal that the figure should be raised to £50.
There are three limbs to this argument. The first, is that it is reasonable to take into account the fall in the value of money since 1953, when the last rise in this allowance was decided upon. The second is based upon a comparison between the history of this allowance and parallel allowances or reliefs. The relief in respect of the services of a daughter began as long ago as the Finance Act, 1920, and was dealt with, interestingly enough, in the Section that covered the case of dependent relatives. On the assumption—which the Royal Commission has since endorsed—that it was extraordinarily difficult to discover general principles which would cover these matters, it was nevertheless thought that there was a parallel to be drawn between these two classes of allowance and relief, which were contained in the same Section. In that Act the deduction in each case was £25.
When the dependent relative allowance rose to £50 the allowance for the services 912 of a daughter remained unchanged, and it remained at its original figure for thirty-three years. Both the dependent relative relief and the allowance for the services of a daughter rose in 1953, but, overall, the case of a daughter rendering services has been comparatively hardly dealt with. This year, once again, help has been given in respect of the dependent relative, but no concession has been made to cover the cost of the services of a daughter.
The second limb of my argument, as I have said, is therefore based upon the discrepancy which appears to exist in the circumstances that these reliefs, which started together on the same footing, have separated in the course of their history, to the detriment of the allowance for the services of a daughter.
The third and final limb of my argument is that the logic of the changes proposed in the Finance Bill should lead the Government to accept the Amendments. I say that because the Chancellor, in his proposals, has shown a strong bent in favour of giving relief to the infirm and over-65s. This was a very prominent characteristic of his proposals. It is strongly arguable that it is disproportionate, but one can understand the considerations of humanity which have actuated him.
The right hon. Gentleman no doubt recognises the fact that old age brings with it the loss of earning power and infirmity. The Chancellor has also shown his attention to this aspect of the matter by offering relief not only to the over-65s but in the case of the dependent relative, in which the element of infirmity also inserts itself. The logic and humanity of his approach should lead him to make a similar concession in the case of the services of a daughter. This allowance is claimable only by someone who is incapacitated by infirmity from taking care of himself and is compelled in all circumstances to fall back upon the services of a daughter.
The element of infirmity in the claimant in this case is present in the same measure as a necessary ingredient as it is in those other matters in respect of which the Government propose to grant further relief. When the processes of logic reach conclusions which are gener- 913 ous they are surely hard to resist, and I hope that the Government will see their way to make concessions in this respect.
§ The Financial Secretary to the Treasury (Mr. J. E. S. Simon)
The hon. and learned Gentleman the Member for Edge Hill (Mr. A. J. Irvine) was, I think, a little less than fair to the Royal Commission when he said that its discussions of this matter had not really done anything to assist our debate. Although it is perfectly true, as the hon. Gentleman the Member for Sowerby (Mr. Houghton) pointed out, that the Royal Commission was unable to find any principle which would serve as a guide to the amount of the various personal allowances, which would include the three allowances that we have been discussing in this Amendment, it pointed out two things which are of value to the Committee in its discussions of these allowances.
The first is that the allowances are not intended to act as estimates of the minimum subsistence cost to be incurred in relation to the object of the allowance. The hon. Member for Sowerby made that point and it is a perfectly true one. It was made by the Royal Commission and is of value in our discussion. The inference which I draw from that is that any rise or fall in the cost of living should not be automatically reflected in a change in the allowances.
The Royal Commission went on to say—and this, I think, is even more valuable—that its real purpose, as was perfectly fairly pointed out by the hon. Members opposite, is to play a part in the system of gradation. That means that allowances must be viewed in relation to the other personal allowances which are not the subject of this Amendment, the main personal allowances, particularly the single person's allowance, the married allowance, and so on.
It is quite right that if the Opposition want to alter one of these allowances they should seek to alter all of them. That seems to be sensible and logical. The hon. Gentleman was being skilful and wheedling in saying that we could pick and choose among them; but all the logic was in the original approach, in putting down Amendments which cover all these allowances together.
So the main ground on which the Committee should reject this Amendment and 914 the others is that, in spite of the examples which the hon. Gentleman gave of the Amendments having been dealt with separately on occasions, they ought not to be dealt with separately from the main personal allowances. That was recognised when the hon. and learned Gentleman, a year or two ago, was persuasive enough to secure a concession from the Government that the daughters' allowance, if I may put it that way, should go up at the same time as the other two allowances that we have been discussing.
Perhaps I should mention, by way of general introduction, what the cost of these Amendments would be. I think that the hon. Gentleman underestimated somewhat. I am advised that the cost of the three Amendments would be about £7 million in a full year, of which, as he pointed out, the main item is the dependent relative's allowance which would cost about £6 million in a full year, the housekeeper allowance costing about £750,000 in a full year.
Having said that, may I deal, first, with the housekeeper allowance? There is a subsidiary reason why it would be a mistake to deal with that in the way sought by the Amendment that has been moved in that it is, as the hon. Member for Sowerby very fairly pointed out, in some respects a defective allowance. In logic, it ought to apply only where there are young children to be looked after, but, in point of fact, it goes beyond that.
There are three cases which it covers. The first is where there is a widow or a widower who has a resident housekeeper, irrespective of whether or not there are young children. That is the anomalous condition. The second case is of the unmarried taxpayer who maintains a family relative to look after a young brother or sister who ranks for child allowance. Those are dealt with in the two provisions which the proposed Amendment seeks to amend.
There is a third case, of which amendment is not sought, where the taxpayer has a resident housekeeper to look after a young child for whom he is entitled to child allowance under Section 218 of the 1952 Act. That is subject to riders into which I need not go. The hon. Gentleman is quite right when he says that the fact that it is mainly payable to the first of these cases in which there 915 is not the necessity to look after young children renders it an anomalous allowance.
§ Mr. G. R. Mitchison (Kettering)
I am getting lost. The hon. and learned Gentleman said that it is mainly payable and the last thing he referred to was the Section 218 allowance, which is not covered by these Amendments. Would he make clear what he was talking about?
§ Mr. Simon
When I said that it was "mainly payable," I meant to say that the housekeeper allowance was mainly payable, and most of the cases in which housekeeper allowances are paid are those, under Section 214.
When the time comes for the reconsideration of the amount of the housekeeper allowance, which, as I suggest, ought to be in the context of a general review of the allowances, the condition that it is payable whether or not there are young children in the family would obviously have to be considered in the light of the views of the Royal Commission. My hon. Friend the Member for Buckinghamshire, South (Mr. Ronald Bell) suggested that any increase should be limited to that case, and, of course, the Royal Commission said that the allowance itself should be limited to that case.
The next point is that the hon. Member for Sowerby compared the movements of the housekeeper allowance with the movements of the wife allowance; and the hon. and learned Member for Edge Hill went so far as to say that the general principle should be that the allowance for the housekeeper should not be less than that for the wife. With very great respect to him, I do not think that that is right. One must realise that there is no real basis for comparing the two. In the first place, the allowance for a married couple is not an allowance only for two people but for two incomes, since for Income Tax purposes the wife's income is aggregated with the husband's and the two incomes are added together and taxed as one. The housekeeper is, I think the hon. and learned Member for Kettering (Mr. Mitchison) suggested, in this respect some kind of domestic servant.
§ 4.30 p.m.
§ Mr. Houghton
I hope that the hon. and learned Gentleman is not overlooking 916 the case of the working wife, who has a special wife's earned income relief which increases considerably the total of the personal reliefs given to the married couple. In Many cases the taxpayer's wife has no income at all, so relief is not given for two incomes but for two people. The housekeeper might be a relative or not. The whole argument is rather fallacious in that context.
§ Mr. Simon
What the hon. Gentleman has said bears out my argument that it is impossible to compare the housekeeper allowance with the wife allowance, which covers two different sets of cases—one in which the wife is working and the other in which she is not. In the former case there are two sets of allowances available. On the other hand, one comes up against the fact that the Royal Commission said that where the wife is working the taxpayer is too favourably treated. I do not think that we shall find many married couples in which the wife is working who would give a very ready assent to that statement.
I pass to the dependent relative allowance. I merely point out that persons who benefit from the allowance have also benefited by a series of liftings of the ceiling. Whenever the retirement pension has gone up, the ceiling of the relative's income has been raised to take advantage of that. That inures to the benefit of the taxpayer for whom the dependent relative allowance is available. It is extra income in his household.
One must also remember, in comparing that allowance with the single and married allowance—as both the hon. and learned Member for Kettering and the hon. Member for Sowerby did—that the dependent relative allowance was doubled during the war whereas the single and married allowances were cut. In looking at the movements of these two sets of allowances since the war one must bear that in mind. I have dealt with the cost of it, which the hon. Gentleman asked me about.
I need only say a word or two about the claimant who is dependent upon the services of a daughter. He is covered by the third of these Amendments. The hon. and learned Member must have been very persuasive in 1953 when he got the Government to accept his Amendment. We had not at that time the Report of the Royal Commission, so 917 whether he would have been equally successful after the Royal Commission had given its views on this allowance I do not know. They said—I have not the actual words, but I think I can summarise them in this way—that this was a completely anomalous allowance. It is the only one of our allowances which depends upon the disability of the taxpayer.
Secondly, and even more strong, is the criticism made against the allowance on the ground that it is quite capricious in its incidence, because it depends upon the taxpayer having a daughter and upon the daughter being available to help to look after her father. I suppose I ought to declare an interest in this matter, since I have not succeeded in having anything but sons. There are many cases which would be quite as deserving as that which qualifies for this allowance. Therefore, the Royal Commission said that it thought the allowance ought to be withdrawn. It said:It is, after all, no more than an accident that there should be a daughter available to live with and look after an aged or infirm person. To give an allowance to such a person and to withhold it from others whose infirmities have to be taken care of by other means is rather to create inequities between taxpayers who ought to be treated alike than to secure the equitable treatment of a satisfactory category of claimant."'It seems impossible to raise an allowance which has been criticised in that way.
For all these reasons and, in general, because of the cost of these Amendments, and because when these allowances are dealt with they ought to be dealt with together, I cannot advise the Committee to accept the Amendments.
§ Mr. Mitchison
The hon. and learned Gentleman is suffering from centipede trouble. He cannot decide which foot to move first, so he remains stationary. One might look a little bit further than that. I agree that we cannot regard these allowances as a logical arrangement and, certainly, nowadays we cannot regard them as indicating a satisfactory standard of subsistence to be obtained out of Income Tax allowances.
I accept that the allowances may properly be regarded as part of a system of gradation, but that is only one side of the story. They can only form part of such a system if they recognise the burdens that are put upon particular taxpayers and if the resulting gradation is 918 intended in some degree to meet those burdens. The best indication we have had that these are, in a sense, exceptional cases is that with the exception of the dependent relative allowance the whole bunch could be covered for about £1 million.
I hope that I have read this matter aright, but as I read it we are dealing with Sections 214, 215, 216 and 217 of the Income Tax Act. They cover five cases, of which three are cases in which the taxpayer has to carry a burden in the shape of a relative, young or old. Two are cases in which he himself has to be helped, by the resident housekeeper or the daughter. The first three cases relate to people taking charge of a widower's children, to an unmarried taxpayer taking charge of a young brother or sister, and to the dependent relative. They all relate to the discharge of obligations the moral character of which seems to entitle the taxpayer to some recognition, however illogical it may be. No doubt because of that, these allowances have worked their way into the system of taxation and now play this part in it.
The hon. and learned Gentleman said that we could not alter these allowances every year. No doubt, but it so happens that, if I am right, the whole bunch were altered in 1953—and the same bunch. The allowances under Sections 214, 215 and 216—if he will excuse this very numerical method of summarising them—all went up from £50 to £60. The Section 217 allowance, which for a long period of years had remained at £25, went up to £40. That is five years ago now, and I should have thought that it was high time to look at the matter again.
The Cohen Report, as it then was—because Lord Radcliffe had not then assumed the chairmanship—appeared in April, 1954. If these allowances are very illogical, and if they have to be looked at altogether and if something or other has to be done to the structure of the whole thing, the Government might remember that they, at any rate, have had plenty of opportunities to rectify the structure, and it is not altogether fair to hold back the amount of the allowances because, during 1955, 1956 and 1957, they have not acted on the Report that appeared in April, 1954.
919 I think that we are entitled to say that in those circumstances the time really has come to put up these allowances a little—and I think that they ought to be put up—without regard to the structure. By all means let the Government put that right—and let them get a move on about it—but they should not be held back on that account. However we look at it, there has clearly been, during that period of years, in several cases a general rise in the cost of this burden, and if the part that these allowances are to play in the system of gradation is to remain substantially the same as it was formerly—and no one has suggested otherwise—I suggest that they must be altered to play that same part.
That is not to say that they are purely subsistence allowances, but it is to point out that, by the character of the allowances, if we leave them as they are in a period of rising prices they begin to play a different part in the system of gradation. We have not been told why the part they play, illogical, or whatever it may be, should be altered, and, therefore, it seems to me perfectly clear that the time has now come when another increase—not a very large one, but an increase—should be made. The increase suggested is from £60 to £75 in the case of four of the allowances—that is to say, of the two under Section 214, the one under Section 215 and the one under Section 216—and from £40 to £50 in the case of the claimant dependent on the daughter.
I have a personal interest in this matter. I think that it is a bit rough to treat daughters in this way if they face the formidable task of looking after an aged or an ailing parent. It is true that this is the case for relief for the parent, but I think that one ought to recognise that it is difficult to find daughters willing to assume this obligation. It must be a matter of mutual consent. The Treasury is very close-fisted indeed if it chooses this particular case, rather than any other, to claim a smaller allowance.
The language of the Statute puzzles me a little. The claimant has to be dependent on his daughter's services. I dare say that that is the fiscal way of putting it, but it does not seem to me to 920 correspond at all with reality. I can only say that, having a personal interest, in that I wish we would move to put it up a little higher, even if I have not yet reached the stage either of finding a daughter to look after me or of acutely needing to be looked after.
I repeat, the case for all these present allowances seems to be that if one does nothing, if one says one cannot put up any of them without putting them all up; if one says one cannot do anything because the structure is not right, though one has let three or four years go by during which one could have remedied that structure had one so chosen, one is then altering the part which these allowances play, and should play, in the Income Tax system by not keeping them up to the general rise in the cost of these matters.
I should have thought that if the Chancellor was in the position to make any concessions at all, the very small concession represented by four of these cases, and the rather larger one represented by the fifth, would, in fact, be concessions to a class of people even more entitled to sympathetic consideration nowadays than those whom we sometimes benefit under Finance Acts, or who are helped by concessions made by the Chancellor of the day.
Three of these are cases of family—I would not say charity, but of the discharge of family obligations. The claimant dependent on the daughter is a very special case, as I have already said, and the allowance for the resident housekeeper should be put up, partly because it comes in with the family relative in charge of the widower's children, but put up for the moment, subject always to reconsideration of the whole structure of that allowance at a later stage.
I do not see, therefore, how we can accept the Government's contention that nothing whatever should be done, and since they are not prepared to tell us which of these Amendments is most acceptable to them, we shall have to do our best to get them to accept the Amendments one after the other.
§ Question put, That those words be there inserted:—
§ The Committee divided: Ayes 215, Noes 247.923
|Division No. 154.]||AYES||[4.47 p.m.|
|Ainsley, J. W.||Hale, Leslie||Popplewell, E.|
|Albu, A. H.||Hall, Rt. Hn. Glenvil (Colne Valley)||Prentice, R. E.|
|Allaun, Frank (Salford, E.)||Hamilton, W. W.||Price, J. T. (Westhoughton)|
|Allen, Arthur (Bosworth)||Harrison, J. (Nottingham, N.)||Probert, A. R.|
|Allen, Scholefield (Crewe)||Hayman, F. H.||Proctor, W. T.|
|Awbery, S. S.||Herbison, Miss M.||Pursey, Cmdr. H.|
|Bacon, Miss Alice||Holman, P.||Rankin, John|
|Balfour, A.||Holmes, Horace||Redhead, E. C.|
|Bellenger, Rt. Hon. F. J.||Holt, A. F.||Reeves, J.|
|Bence, C. R. (Dunbartonshire, E.)||Houghton, Douglas||Reid, William|
|Benn, Hn. Wedgwood (Bristol, S. E.)||Howell, Charles (Perry Barr)||Reynolds, G. W.|
|Benson, Sir George||Hoy, J. H.||Rhodes, H.|
|Beswiok, Frank||Hubbard, T. F.||Robens, Rt. Hon. A.|
|Bevan, Rt. Hon. A. (Ebbw Vale)||Hughes, Emrys (S. Ayrshire)||Roberts, Albert (Normanton)|
|Blenkinsop, A.||Hunter, A. E.||Roberts, Goronwy (Caernarvon)|
|Blyton, W. R.||Hynd, H. (Accrington)||Robinson, Kenneth (St. Panoras, N.)|
|Boardman, H.||Hynd, J. B. (Attercliffe)||Ross, William|
|Bottomley, Rt. Hon. A. G.||Irvine, A. J. (Edge Hill)||Royle, C.|
|Bowden, H. W. (Leicester, S. W.)||Irving, Sydney (Dartford)||Shinwell, Rt. Hon. E.|
|Bowles, F. G.||Isaacs, Rt. Hon. G. A.||Short, E. W.|
|Boyd, T. C.||Janner, B.||Shurmer, P. L. E.|
|Braddock, Mrs. Elizabeth||Jay, Rt. Hon. D. P. T.||Silverman, Julius (Aston)|
|Brockway, A. F.||Jeger, George (Goole)||Silverman, Sydney (Nelson)|
|Brown, Thomas (Ince)||Jeger, Mrs. Lena (Holbn & St. Pncs. S.)||Simmons, C. J. (Brierley Hill)|
|Burke, W. A.||Jenkins, Roy (Steohford)||Skeffington, A. M.|
|Burton, Miss F. E.||Johnson, James (Rugby)||Slater, Mrs. H. (Stoke, N.)|
|Butler, Herbert (Hackney, C.)||Jones, Rt. Hon. A. Creech (Wakefield)||Slater, J. (Sedgefield)|
|Butler, Mrs. Joyce (Wood Green)||Jones, David (The Hartlepools)||Smith, Ellis (Stoke, S.)|
|Soskice, Rt. Hon Sir Frank|
|Callaghan, L. J.||Jones, J. Idwal (Wrexham)||Sparks, J. A.|
|Carmichael, J.||Key, Rt. Hon. C. W.||Spriggs, L.|
|Castle, Mrs. B. A.||Lawson, G. M.||Stewart, Michael (Fulham)|
|Champion, A. J.||Lee, Frederick (Newton)||Stonehouse, John|
|Clunie, J.||Lee, Miss Jennie (Cannook)||Stones, W. (Consett)|
|Collins, V. J. (Shoreditch & Finsbury)||Lewis, Arthur||Strachey, Rt. Hon. J.|
|Cove, W. G.||Lindgren, G. S.||Strauss, Rt. Hon. George (Vauxhall)|
|Craddook, George (Bradford, S.)||Lipton, Marcus||Summerskill, Rt. Hon. E.|
|Cronin, J. D.||Mabon, Dr. J. Dickson||Swingler, S. T.|
|Crossman, R. H. S.||McAlister, Mrs. Mary||Sylvester, G. O.|
|Cullen, Mrs. A.||McCann, J.||Taylor, Bernard (Mansfield)|
|Davies, Rt. Hn. Clement (Montgomery)||MacColl, J. E.||Thomas, George (Cardiff)|
|Davies, Ernest (Enfield, E.)||MacDermot, Niall||Thomson, George (Dundee, E.)|
|Davies, Stephen (Merthyr)||McGhee, H. G.||Thornton, E.|
|Deer, G.||McInnes, J.||Tomney, F.|
|de Freitas, Geoffrey||McLeavy, Frank||Ungoed-Thomas, Sir Lynn|
|Diamond, John||MacMillan, M. K. (Western Isles)||Usborne, H. C.|
|Dodds, N. N.||MacPherson, Malcolm (Stirling)||Wade, D. W.|
|Donnelly, D. L.||Mallalieu, E. L. (Brigg)||Warbey, W. N.|
|Dugdale, Rt. Hn. John (W. Brmwch)||Mallalieu, J. P. W. (Huddersfd, E.)||Watkins, T. E.|
|Dye S.||Mann, Mrs. Jean||Weitzman, D.|
|Ede, Rt. Hon. J. C.||Marquand, Rt. Hon. H. A.||Wells, Percy (Faversham)|
|Edelman, M.||Mason, Roy||Wells, William (Walsall, N.)|
|Edwards, Rt. Hon. John (Brighouse)||Mellish, R. J.||West, D. G.|
|Edwards, Rt. Hon. Ness (Caerphilly)||Messer, Sir F.||Wheeldon, W. E.|
|Edwards, Robert (Bilston)||Mitchison, G. R.||White, Mrs. Eirene (E. Flint)|
|Edwards, W. J. (Stepney)||Monslow, W.||Wilkins, W. A.|
|Evans, Albert (Islington, S. W.)||Moody, A. S.||Willey, Frederick|
|Evans, Edward (Lowestoft)||Morris, Peroy (Swansea, W.)||Williams, David (Neath)|
|Fernyhough, E.||Morrison, Rt. Hn. Herbert (Lewis'm, S.)||Williams, Rev. Llywelyn (Ab'tillery)|
|Finch, H. J.||Mort, D. L.||Williams, Rt. Hon. T. (Don Valley)|
|Fitch, E. A.||Moyle, A.||Williams, W. T. (Barons Court)|
|Foot, D. M.||Mulley, F. W.||Willis, Eustace (Edinburgh, E.)|
|Forman, J. C.||Neal, Harold (Bolsover)||Wilson, Rt. Hon. Harold (Huyton)|
|Fraser, Thomas (Hamilton)||Noel-Baker, Rt. Hon. P. (Derby, S.)||Winterbottom, Richard|
|Gaitskell, Rt. Hon. H. T. N.||Oliver, G. H.||Woodburn, Rt. Hon. A.|
|George, Lady Megan Lloyd (Car'then)||Oswald, T.||Woof, R. E.|
|Gibson, C. W.||Owen, W. J.||Yates, V. (Ladywood)|
|Gordon Walker, Rt. Hon. P. C.||Padley, W. E.||Younger, Rt. Hon. K.|
|Greenwood, Anthony||Paling, Rt. Hon. W. (Dearne Valley)||Zilliacus, K.|
|Grenfell, Rt. Hon. D. R.||Pannell, Charles (Leeds, W.)|
|Grey, C. F.||Paton, John||TELLERS FOR THE AYES:|
|Griffiths, Rt. Hon. James (Llanelly)||Pearson, A.||Mr. J. Taylor and Mr. G. H. R. Rogers.|
|Griffiths, William (Exchange)||Peart, T. F.|
|Grimond, J.||Pentland, N.|
|Agnew, Sir Peter||Armstrong, C. W.||Barlow, Sir John|
|Aitken, W. T.||Ashton, H.||Barter, John|
|Amery, Julian (Preston, N.)||Atkins, H. E.||Batsford, B. C. C.|
|Amory, Rt. Hn. Heathcoat (Tiverton)||Balniel, Lord||Beamish, Col. Tufton|
|Arbuthnot, John||Barber, Anthony||Bell, Philip (Bolton, E.)|
|Bell, Ronald (Bucks, S.)||Head, Rt. Hon. A. H.||Nicolson, N. (B'n'm'th, E. & Chr'ch)|
|Bennett, F. M. (Torquay)||Heald, Rt. Hon. Sir Lionel||Noble, Comdr. Rt. Hon. Allan|
|Bevins, J. R. (Toxteth)||Heath, Rt. Hon. E. R. G.||Noble, M. A. C. (Argyll)|
|Biggs-Davison, J. A.||Henderson-Stewart, Sir James||Nugent, G. R. H.|
|Bingham, R. M.||Hill, Rt. Hon. Charles (Luton)||O'Neill, Hn. Phelim (Co. Antrim, N.)|
|Birch, Rt. Hon. Nigel||Hill, Mrs. E. (Wythenshawe)||Ormsby-Gore, Rt. Hon. W. D.|
|Bishop, F. P.||Hinchingbrooke, Viscount||Orr, Capt. L. P. S.|
|Black, C. W.||Hirst, Geoffrey||Orr-Ewing, Charles Ian (Hendon, N.)|
|Body, R. F.||Hobson, John (Warwick & Leam' gt' n)||Osborne, C.|
|Boothby, Sir Robert||Holland-Martin, C. J.||Page, R. G.|
|Bossom, Sir Alfred||Hope, Lord John||Pannell, N. A. (Kirkdale)|
|Boyle, Sir Edward||Hornby, R. P.||Partridge, E.|
|Braine, B. R.||Hornsby-Smith, Miss M. P.||Peel, W. J.|
|Braithwaite, Sir Albert (Harrow, W.)||Howard, Gerald (Cambridgeshire)||Peyton, J. W. W.|
|Bromley-Davenport, Lt.-Col. W. H.||Howard, John (Test)||Pickthorn, K. W. M.|
|Brooman-White, R. C.||Hudson, W. R. A. (Hull, N.)||Pilkington, Capt. R. A.|
|Browne, J. Nixon (Craigton)||Hughes Hallett, Vice-Admiral J.||Pitman, I. J.|
|Bryan, P.||Hughes-Young, M. H. C.||Pitt, Miss E. M.|
|Bullus, Wing Commander E. E.||Hurd, A. R.||Pott, H. P.|
|Burden, F. F. A.||Powell, J. Enoch|
|Butcher, Sir Herbert||Hutchison, Michael Clark (E 'b' gh, S.)||Price, David (Eastlelgh)|
|Hutchison, Sir James (Scotstoun)||Price, Henry (Lewisham, W.)|
|Butler, Rt. Hn. R. A. (Saffron Walden)||Hyde, Montgomery||Prior-Palmer, Brig. O. L.|
|Campbell, Sir David||Hylton-Foster, Rt. Hon. Sir Harry||Profumo, J. D.|
|Carr, Robert||Iremonger, T. L.||Ramsden, J. E.|
|Cary, Sir Robert||Irvine, Bryant Godman (Rye)||Rawlinson, Peter|
|Channon, Sir Henry||Jenkins, Robert (Dulwich)||Redmayne, M.|
|Chichester-Clark, R.||Jennings, J. C. (Burton)||Roberts, Sir Peter (Heeley)|
|Cole, Norman||Johnson, Dr. Donald (Carlisle)||Robinson, Sir Roland (Blackpool, S.)|
|Conant, Maj. Sir Roger||Johnson, Eric (Blackley)||Rodgers, John (Sevenoaks)|
|Cooke, Robert||Joseph, Sir Keith||Roper, Sir Harold|
|Cooper, A. E.||Joynson-Hicks, Hon. Sir Lancelot||Ropner, Col. Sir Leonard|
|Cooper-Key, E. M.||Kaberry, D.||Russell, R. S.|
|Cordeaux, Lt.-Col. J. K.||Kerby, Capt. H. B.||Sharples, R. C.|
|Craddock, Beresford (Spelthorne)||Kerr, Sir Hamilton||Shepherd, William|
|Crosthwaite-Eyre, Col. O. E.||Kershaw, J. A.||Simon, J. E. S. (Middlesbrough, W.)|
|Crowder, Sir John (Flnchley)||Kimball, M.||Smithers, Peter (Winchester)|
|Cunningham, Knox||Langford-Holt, J. A.||Smyth, Brig. Sir John (Norwood)|
|Currie, G. B. H.||Leather, E. H. C.||Spearman, Sir Alexander|
|Davidson, Viscountess||Leavey, J. A.||Speir, R. M.|
|D' Avigdor-Goldsmid, Sir Henry||Leburn, W. G.||Stevens, Geoffrey|
|Deedes, W. F.||Legge-Bourke, Maj. E. A. H.||Steward, Harold (Stockport, S.)|
|Digby, Simon Wingfield||Legh, Hon. Peter (Petersfield)||Steward, Sir William (Woolwich, W.)|
|Donaldson, Cmdr. C. E. McA.||Lindsay, Hon. James (Devon, N.)||Stuart, Rt. Hon. James (Moray)|
|Doughty, C. J. A.||Linstead, Sir H. N.||Shudholme, Sir Henry|
|du Cann, E. D. L.||Lloyd, Maj. Sir Guy (Renfrew, E.)||Summers, Sir Spencer|
|Dugdale, Rt. Hn. Sir T. (Richmond)||Lloyd, Rt. Hon. Selwyn (Wirral)||Sumner, W. D. M. (Orpington)|
|Duncan, Sir James||Low, Rt. Hon. Sir Toby||Taylor, Sir Charles (Eastbourne)|
|Duthie, W. S.||Lucas, Sir Jocelyn (Portsmouth, S.)||Teeling, W.|
|Eden, J. B. (Bournemouth, West)||Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh||Temple, John M.|
|Elliott, R. W. (Ne'castle upon Tyne, N.)||McAdden, S. J.||Thomas, Leslie (Canterbury)|
|Emmet, Hon. Mrs. Evelyn||Macdonald, Sir Peter||Thomas, P. J. M. (Conway)|
|Errington, Sir Eric||Mackeson, Brig. Sir Harry||Thompson, Kenneth (Walton)|
|Farey-Jones, F. W.||McKibbin, Alan||Thompson, R. (Croydon, S.)|
|Fell, A.||Mackie, J. H. (Galloway)||Thorneycroft, Rt. Hon. P.|
|Finlay, Graeme||McLaughlin, Mrs. P.||Thornton-Kemsley, Sir Colin|
|Fisher, Nigel||Tiley, A. (Bradford, W.)|
|Fletcher-Cooke, C.||MacLeod, John (Ross & Cromarty)||Turton, Rt. Hon. R. H.|
|Fort, R.||Macmillan, Rt. Hn. Harold (Bromley)||Tweedsmuir, Lady|
|Fraser, Sir Ian (M'cmbe & Lonsdale)||Macmillan, Maurice (Halifax)||Vane, W. M. F.|
|Freeth, Denzil||Macpherson, Niall (Dumfries)||Vaughan-Morgan, J. K.|
|Garner-Evans, E. H.||Maddan, Martin||Vickers, Miss Joan|
|George, J. C. (Pollok)||Maitland, Cdr. J. F. W. (Horncastle)||Vosper, Rt. Hon. D. F.|
|Gibson-Watt, D.||Maitland, Hon. Patrick (Lanark)||Wakefield, Sir Wavell (St. M'lebone)|
|Glyn, Col. Richard H.||Markham, Major Sir Frank||Wall, Patrick|
|Godber, J. B.||Marples, Rt. Hon. A. E.||Ward, Dame Irene (Tynemouth)|
|Goodhart, Philip||Marshall, Douglas||Watkinson, Rt. Hon. Harold|
|Gough, C. F. H.||Mathew, R.||Webster, D. W. E.|
|Gower, H. R.||Maudling, Rt. Hon. R.||Whitelaw, W. S. I.|
|Graham, Sir Fergus||Mawby, R. L.||Williams, Paul (Sunderland, S.)|
|Grant, W. (Woodside)||Maydon, Lt.-Comdr. S. L. C.||Williams, R. Dudley (Exeter)|
|Grant-Ferris, Wg Cdr. R. (Nantwich)||Medlicott, Sir Frank||Wills, Sir Gerald (Bridgwater)|
|Green, A.||Milligan, Rt. Hon. W. R.||Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)|
|Grimston, Hon. John (St. Albans)||Morrison, John (Salisbury)||Wood, Hon. R.|
|Grosvenor, Lt.-Col. R. G.||Mott-Radclyffe, Sir Charles||Woollam, John Victor|
|Gurden, Harold||Nabarro, G. D. N.|
|Hall, John (Wycombe)||Nairn, D. L. S.||TELLERS FOR THE NOES:|
|Harris, Reader (Heston)||Neave, Airey||Mr. Oakshott and|
|Harrison, A. B. C. (Maldon)||Nicholls, Harmar||Mr. E. Wakefield.|
|Harrison, Col. J. H. (Eye)||Nicholson, Sir Godfrey (Farnham)|
Amendment proposed: In page 7, line 27, at end insert:
and for references to sixty pounds (which relate to the amount of the relief) there shall be substituted references to seventy-five pounds".—[Mr. H. Wilson.]
§ Question put, That those words be there inserted:—
§ The Committee divided: Ayes 210, Noes 247.929
|Division No. 155.]||AYES||[4.57 p.m.|
|Ainsley, J. W.||Grimond, J.||Pentland, N.|
|Albu, A. H.||Hale, Leslie||Popplewell, E.|
|Allaun, Frank (Salford, E.)||Hall, Rt. Hn. Glenvil (Colne Valley)||Prentice, R. E.|
|Allen, Arthur (Bosworth)||Hamilton, W. W.||Price, J. T. (Westhoughton)|
|Allen, Schofield (Crewe)||Harrison, J. (Nottingham, N.)||Probert, A. R.|
|Awbery, S. S.||Hayman, F. H.||Proctor, W. T.|
|Bacon, Miss Alice||Herbison, Miss M.||Pursey, Cmdr. H.|
|Balfour, A.||Holman, P.||Rankin, John|
|Bellenger, Rt. Hon. F. J.||Holmes, Horace||Redhead, E. C.|
|Bence, C. R. (Dunbartonshire, E.)||Holt, A. F.||Reeves, J.|
|Benn, Hn. Wedgwood (Bristol, S. E.)||Houghton, Douglas||Reid, William|
|Beswick, Frank||Howell, Charles (Perry Barr)||Reynolds, G. W.|
|Bevan, Rt. Hon. A. (Ebbw Vale)||Hubbard, T. F.||Rhodes, H.|
|Blenkinsop, A.||Hughes, Emrys (S. Ayrshire)||Robens, Rt. Hon. A.|
|Blyton, W. R.||Hunter, A. E.||Roberts, Albert (Normanton)|
|Boardman, H.||Hynd, H. (Accrington)||Roberts, Goronwy (Caernarvon)|
|Bottomley, Rt. Hon. A. G.||Hynd, J. B. (Attercliffe)||Robinson, Kenneth (St. Panoras, N.)|
|Bowden, H. W. (Leicester, S. W.)||Irvine, A. J. (Edge Hill)||Ross, William|
|Bowles, F. G.||Irving, Sydney (Dartford)||Royle, C.|
|Boyd, T. C.||Isaacs, Rt. Hon. G. A.||Shinwell, Rt. Hon. E.|
|Braddock, Mrs. Elizabeth||Janner, B.||Shurmer, P. L. E.|
|Brockway, A. F.||Jay, Rt. Hon. D. P. T.||Silverman, Julius (Aston)|
|Brown, Thomas (Ince)||Jeger, George (Goole)||Silverman, Sydney (Nelson)|
|Burke, W. A.||Jeger, Mrs. Lena (Holbn & St. Pnos, S.)||Simmons, C. J. (Brierley Hill)|
|Burton, Miss F. E.||Jenkins, Roy (Stechford)||Skeffington, A. M.|
|Butler, Herbert (Hackney, C.)||Johnson, James (Rugby)||Slater, Mrs. H. (Stoke, N)|
|Butler, Mrs. Joyce (Wood Green)||Jones, Rt. Hon. A. Creech (Wakefield)||Slater, J. (Sedgefield)|
|Callaghan, L. J.||Jones, David (The Hartlepools)||Smith, Ellis (Stoke, S.)|
|Carmichael, J.||Jones, J. Idwal (Wrexham)||Soskice, Rt. Hon. Sir Frank|
|Castle, Mrs. B. A.||Key, Rt. Hon. C. W.||Sparks, J. A.|
|Champion, A. J.||Lawson, G. M.||Spriggs, L.|
|Clunie, J.||Lee, Frederick (Newton)||Stewart, Michael (Fulham)|
|Collins, V. J. (Shoreditch & Finsbury)||Lee, Miss Jennie (Cannook)||Stonehouse, John|
|Cove, W. G.||Lewis, Arthur||Stones, W. (Consett)|
|Craddock, George (Bradford, S.)||Lindgren, G. S.||Strachey, Rt. Hon. J.|
|Cronin, J. D.||Lipton, Marcus||Strauss, Rt. Hon. George (Vauxhall)|
|Crossman, R. H. S.||Mabon, Dr. J. Dickson||Summerskill, Rt. Hon. E.|
|Cullen, Mrs. A.||McCann, J.||Swingler, S. T.|
|Davies, Rt. Hon. Clement (Montgomery)||MacColl, J. E.||Sylvester, G. O.|
|Davies, Ernest (Enfield, E.)||MacDermot, Niall||Taylor, Bernard (Mansfield)|
|Davies, Stephen (Merthyr)||McGhee, H. G.||Thomas, George (Cardiff)|
|Deer, G.||McInnes, J.||Thomson, George (Dundee, E.)|
|de Freitas, Geoffrey||McLeavy, Frank||Thornton, E.|
|Diamond, John||MacMillan, M. K. (Western Isles)||Tomney, F.|
|Dodds, N. N.||MacPherson, Malcolm (Stirling)||Ungoed-Thomas, Sir Lynn|
|Donnelly, D. L.||Mallalieu, E. L. (Brigg)||Usborne, H. C.|
|Dugdale, Rt. Hn. John (W. Brmwch)||Mallalieu, J. P. W. (Huddersfd, E.)||Wade, D. W.|
|Dye, S.||Mann, Mrs. Jean||Warbey, W. N.|
|Ede, Rt. Hon. J. C.||Marquand, Rt. Hon. H. A.||Watkins, T. E.|
|Edelman, M.||Mason, Roy||Weitzman, D.|
|Edwards, Rt. Hon. John (Brighouse)||Mellish, R. J.||Wells, Percy (Faversham)|
|Edwards, Rt. Hon. Ness (Caerphilly)||Messer, Sir F.||Wells, William (Walsall, N.)|
|Edwards, Robert (Biston)||Mitchison, G. R.||Wheeldon, W. E.|
|Edwards, W. J. (Stepney)||Monslow, W.||White, Mrs. Eirene (E. Flint)|
|Evans, Albert (Islington, S. W.)||Moody, A. S.||Wilkins, W. A.|
|Evans, Edward (Lowestoft)||Morris, Percy (Swansea, W.)||Willey, Frederick|
|Fernyhough, E.||Morrison, Rt. Hn. Herbert (Lewis' m, S.)||Williams, David (Neath)|
|Finch, H. J.||Mort, D. L.||Williams, Rev. Llywelyn (Ab'tillery)|
|Fitch, E. A.||Moyle, A.||Williams, Rt. Hon. T. (Don Valley)|
|Foot, D. M.||Mulley, F. W.||Williams, W. T. (Barons Court)|
|Forman, J. C.||Neal, Harold (Bolsover)||Willis, Eustace (Edinburgh, E.)|
|Fraser, Thomas (Hamilton)||Noel-Baker, Rt. Hon. P. (Derby, S.)||Wilson, Rt. Hon. Harold (Huyton)|
|Gaitskell, Rt. Hon. H. T. N.||Oliver, G. H.||Winterbottom, Richard|
|George, Lady Megan Lloyd (Car' then)||Oswald, T.||Woodburn, Rt. Hon. A.|
|Gibson, C. W.||Owen, W. J.||Woof, R. E.|
|Gordon Walker, Rt. Hon. P. C.||Padley, W. E.||Yates, V. (Ladywood)|
|Greenwood, Anthony||Paling, Rt. Hon. W. (Dearne Valley)||Younger, Rt. Hon. K.|
|Grenfell, Rt. Hon. D. R.||Pannell, Charles (Leeds, W.)||Zilliacus, K.|
|Grey, C. F.||Paton, John|
|Griffiths, Rt. Hon. James (Llanelly)||Pearson, A.||TELLERS FOR THE AYES:|
|Griffiths, William (Exchange)||Peart, T. F.||Mr. J. Taylor and Mr. G. H. R. Rogers.|
|Agnew, Sir Peter||Gower, H. R.||Marshall, Douglas|
|Amory, Rt. Hn. Heathcoat (Tiverton)||Graham, Sir Fergus||Mathew, R.|
|Arbuthnot, John||Grant, W. (Woodside)||Maudling, Rt. Hon. R.|
|Armstrong, C. W.||Grant-Ferris, Wg Cdr, R. (Nantwich)||Mawby, R. L.|
|Ashton, H.||Green, A.||Maydon, Lt.-Comdr. S. L. C.|
|Atkins, H. E.||Grimston, Hon. John (St. Albans)||Medlicott, Sir Frank|
|Baldock, Lt.-Cmdr. J. M.||Grosvenor, Lt.-Col. R. G.||Milligan, Rt. Hon. W. R.|
|Balniel, Lord||Gurden, Harold||Morrison, John (Salisbury)|
|Barber, Anthony||Hall, John (Wycombe)||Mott-Radclyffe, Sir Charles|
|Barlow, Sir John||Harris, Reader (Heston)||Nabarro, G. D. N.|
|Barter, John||Harrison, A. B. C (Maldon)||Nairn, D. L. S.|
|Batsford, B. C. C.||Harrison, Col. J. H. (Eye)||Neave, Airey|
|Beamish, Col. Tufton||Head, Rt. Hon. A. H.||Nicholls, Harmar|
|Bell, Philip (Bolton, E.)||Heald, Rt. Hon. Sir Lionel||Nicholson, Sir Godfrey (Farnham)|
|Bell, Ronald (Bucks, S.)||Heath, Rt. Hon. E. R. G.||Nicolson, N. (B'n'm'th, E. & Chr'ch)|
|Bennett, F. M. (Torquay)||Henderson-Stewart, Sir James||Noble, Comdr. Rt. Hon. Allan|
|Bevins, J. R. (Toxteth)||Hill, Rt. Hon. Charles (Luton)||Noble, M. A. C. (Argyll)|
|Biggs-Davison, J. A.||Hill, Mrs. E. (Wythenshawe)||Nugent, G. R. H.|
|Bingham, R. M.||Hinchingbrooke, Viscount||Oakshott, H. D.|
|Birch, Rt. Hon. Nigel||Hirst, Geoffrey||O'Neill, Hn. Phelim (Co. Antrim, N.)|
|Bishop, F. P.||Hobson, John (Warwick & Leam'gt'n)||Ormsby-Gore, Rt. Hon. W. D.|
|Black, C. W.||Holland-Martin, C. J.||Orr, Capt. L. P. S.|
|Body, R. F.||Hope, Lord John||Orr-Ewing, Charles Ian (Hendon, N.)|
|Boothby, Sir Robert||Hornby, R. P.||Osborne, C.|
|Bossom, Sir Alfred||Hornsby-Smith, Miss M. P.||Page, R. G.|
|Boyle, Sir Edward||Horobin, Sir Ian||Pannell, N. A. (Kirkdale)|
|Braine, B. R.||Howard, Gerald (Cambridgeshire)||Partridge, E.|
|Braithwaite, Sir Albert (Harrow, W.)||Howard, John (Test)||Peel, W. J.|
|Bromley-Davenport, Lt.-Col. W. H.||Hudson, W. R. A. (Hull, N.)||Peyton, J. W. W.|
|Brooman-White, R. C.||Hughes Hallett, Vice-Admiral J.||Pickthorn, K. W. M.|
|Browne, J. Nixon (Craigton)||Hughes-Young, M. H. C.||Pilkington, Capt. R. A.|
|Bryan, P.||Hurd, A. R.||Pitman, I. J.|
|Bullus, Wing-Commander E. E.||Hutchison, Michael Clark (E'b'gh, S.)||Pitt, Miss E. M.|
|Burden, F. F. A.||Hutchison, Sir James (Scotstoun)||Pott, H. P.|
|Butcher, Sir Herbert||Hyde, Montgomery||Powell, J. Enoch|
|Butler, Rt. Hn. R. A. (Saffron Walden)||Hylton-Foster, Rt. Hon. Sir Harry||Price, David (Eastleigh)|
|Campbell, Sir David||Iremonger, T. L.||Price, Henry (Lewisham, W.)|
|Carr, Robert||Irvine, Bryant Godman (Rye)||Prior-Palmer, Brig. O. L.|
|Cary, Sir Robert||Jenkins, Robert (Dulwich)||Profumo, J. D.|
|Channon, Sir Henry||Jennings, J. C. (Burton)||Rawlinson, Peter|
|Cole, Norman||Johnson, Dr. Donald (Carlisle)||Redmayne, M.|
|Conant, Maj. Sir Roger||Johnson, Eric (Blackley)||Roberts, Sir Peter (Heeley)|
|Cooke, Robert||Jones, Rt. Hon. Aubrey (Hall Green)||Robinson, Sir Roland (Blackpool, S.)|
|Cooper, A. E.||Joseph, Sir Keith||Rodgers, John (Sevenoaks)|
|Cooper-Key, E. M.||Joynson-Hicks, Hon. Sir Lancelot||Ropner, Col. Sir Leonard|
|Cordeaux, Lt.-Col. J. K.||Kaberry, D.||Russell, R. S.|
|Craddock, Berestord (Spelthorne)||Kerby, Capt. H. B.||Sharples, R. C.|
|Crosthwaite-Eyre, Col. O. E.||Kerr, Sir Hamilton||Shepherd, William|
|Crowder, Sir John (Finchley)||Kershaw, J. A.||Simon, J. E. S. (Middlesbrough, W.)|
|Cunningham, Knox||Kimball, M.||Smithers, Peter (Winchester)|
|Currie, G. B. H.||Langford-Holt, J. A.||Smyth, Brig. Sir John (Norwood)|
|Davidson, Viscountess||Leather, E. H. C.||Spearman, Sir Alexander|
|D'Avigdor-Goldsmid, Sir Henry||Leavey, J. A.||Speir, R. M.|
|Deedes, W. F.||Leburn, W. G.||Stevens, Geoffrey|
|Digby, Simon Wingfield||Legge-Bourke, Maj. E. A. H.||Steward, Harold (Stockport, S.)|
|Donaldson, Cmdr. C. E. McA.||Legh, Hon. Peter (Petersfield)||Steward, Sir William (Woolwich, W.)|
|du Cann, E. D. L.||Lindsay, Hon. James (Devon, N.)||Stuart, Rt. Hon. James (Moray)|
|Dugdale, Rt. Hn. Sir T. (Richmond)||Linstead, Sir H. N.||Studholme, Sir Henry|
|Duncan, Sir James||Lloyd, Maj. Sir Guy (Renfrew, E.)||Summers, Sir Spencer|
|Duthie, W. S.||Lloyd, Rt. Hon. Selwyn (Wirral)||Sumner, W. D. M. (Orpington)|
|Eden, J. B. (Bournemouth, West)||Low, Rt. Hon. Sir Toby||Taylor, Sir Charles (Eastbourne)|
|Elliott, R. W. (Ne'castle upon Tyne, N.)||Lucas, Sir Jocelyn (Portsmouth, S.)||Teeling, W.|
|Emmet, Hon. Mrs. Evelyn||Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh||Temple, John M.|
|Errington, Sir Eric||McAdden, S. J.||Thomas, Leslie (Canterbury)|
|Farey-Jones, F. W.||Macdonald, Sir Peter||Thomas, P. J. M. (Conway)|
|Fell, A.||Mackeson, Brig. Sir Harry||Thompson, Kenneth (Walton)|
|Finlay, Graeme||McKibbin, Alan||Thompson, R. (Croydon, S.)|
|Fisher, Nigel||Mackie, J. H. (Galloway)||Thorneycroft, Rt. Hon. P.|
|Fletcher-Cooke, C.||McLaughlin, Mrs. P.||Tiley, A. (Bradford, W.)|
|Fort, R.||McLean, Neil (Inverness)||Turton, Rt. Hon. R. H.|
|Fraser, Sir Ian (M'cmbe & Lonsdale)||MacLeod, John (Ross & Cromarty)||Tweedsmuir, Lady|
|Freeth, Denzil||Macmillan, Rt. Hn. Harold (Bromley)||Vane, W. M. F.|
|Gammans, Lady||Macmillan, Maurice (Halifax)||Vaughan-Morgan, J. K.|
|Garner-Evans, E. H.||Macpherson, Niall (Dumfries)||Vickers, Miss Joan|
|George, J. C. (Pollok)||Maddan, Martin||Vosper, Rt. Hon. D. F.|
|Gibson-Watt, D.||Maitland, Cdr, J. F. W. (Horncastle)||Wall, Patrick|
|Glyn, Col. Richard H.||Maitland, Hon. Patrick (Lanark)||Ward, Rt. Hon. G. R. (Worcester)|
|Godber, J. B.||Markham, Major Sir Frank||Ward, Dame Irene (Tynemouth)|
|Goodhart, Philip||Marlowe, A. A. H.||Watkinson, Rt. Hon. Harold|
|Gough, C. F. H.||Marples, Rt. Hon. A. E.||Webster, D. W. E.|
|Whitelaw, W. S. I.||Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES:|
|Williams, Paul (Sunderland, S.)||Wood, Hon. R.||Mr. E. Wakefield and Mr. Chichester-Clark.|
|Williams, R. Dudley (Exeter)||Woollam, John Victor|
|Wills, Sir Gerald (Bridgwater)|
§ Mr. Houghton
I beg to move, in page 7, line 27, at the end to insert:(4) In section fifteen of the Finance Act, 1952 (relief for small incomes), as amended by subsection (2) of section two of the Finance Act, 1955, references to three hundred and fifty pounds shall be substituted in all places for references to three hundred pounds (the income limit for the full relief), a reference to four hundred and fifty pounds shall be substituted for the reference to four hundred pounds (the income limit of marginal relief), and a reference to thirteen twenty-fifths shall be substituted for the reference to nine-twentieths (the fraction governing the marginal relief).Clause 12 continues the upward trend of the special reliefs for older people, that is to say, age exemption and age relief, but no change is proposed in the Bill for small income relief which provides that where a person not qualified for age relief has a total income not exceeding £300, income relief may be granted on unearned income. There is provision for marginal relief for incomes not greatly in excess of £300.
This relief, which was created in 1952, is intended to give some tax relief to persons not over the age of 65, but who are living on small incomes. The sort of persons whom I have no doubt the Chancellor had in mind at the time were widows, unmarried women living on small annuities or on the income from modest legacies, and prematurely retired persons with small annuities or investment income.
When the relief was first granted the ceiling of total income was £250. That was increased in 1955 to £300. This Amendment proposes to increase the ceiling to £350 with marginal relief increased to £450 instead of £350. When this relief began the income limit was one-half of the limit of income for age relief. Age relief grants the benefit of earned income relief for persons over 65 years of age, in the case of the married couple if either of them is over 65, whose total income from all sources does not exceed a certain amount.
Under the Chancellor's proposals in Clause 12 the new ceiling for age relief is to be a total income of £800. As I have said, when the relief was first granted the ceiling for the small income relief was one-half of the ceiling for age relief. Both 930 these reliefs have the same effect, that of giving the benefit of earned income relief on unearned income, in the one case where people are over 65, where the ceiling is higher, and in the other case where they are under 65, where the ceiling is lower, but the nature of the relief is the same. When the age relief ceiling was lifted from £500 to £600 the small income relief ceiling was subsequently raised to £300, making it again one-half of the ceiling for age relief.
Since then the age relief ceiling has gone up by two steps: first, to £700 last year; and now to £800 in Clause 12 this year. But the Chancellor has not proposed, this time or last year, the kind of corresponding adjustment in the ceiling of small income relief which accompanied the lifting of the age relief ceiling in earlier years. We think that this adjustment should be made.
Let us consider what has happened. Clause 12 proposes to lift the ceiling for age exemption on a relief which was created for the first time last year for age exemption. The limit was put at £250 last year, and the Clause proposes to increase it to £275 this year for a single person. For a married couple it is to be £440, compared with £400 last year. This age relief, which was limited to incomes up to £500 in 1952, was stepped up to £600 in 1953; to £700 in 1957; and to £800 this year. Small income relief has not been given comparable treatment. It was a £250 limit in 1952 and a £300 limit in 1955. Since then the age exemption has been introduced and increased, and age relief has been increased twice, with no adjustment for small income relief. So we believe that the Chancellor should keep these associated reliefs in proper harmony.
I am sure that on both sides of the Committee there will be a great deal of sympathy for the problems of elderly people living on comparatively small incomes. We have welcomed the special tax concessions given to old folk living on small incomes. These now take two forms. One is total exemption from tax where the person is over 65 and has a total income of less than £275 a year. A married couple are exempted if their joint total income does not exceed £440 a year.
931 5.15 p.m.
There is still a good deal of misunderstanding about the real significance of age exemption. Many people believe that the first £275 of their income is exempt, even though their total income may be above that figure; that it is a kind of exemption on a slice of their income, with tax being levelled at the normal rate on income above what they believe to be the exemption limit. Similarly with married couples. I think it desirable to make it abundantly clear that age exemption is granted only where the total income from all sources does not exceed a ceiling of £275 in the case of a single person aver 65, and £440 in the case of a married couple, one of whom is 65. In both cases that is the figure for this year, because these are the new ceilings for age exemption for the current Income Tax year.
That is one form of special relief given to elderly people. The other is a relief given to those whose incomes are above the exemption limit subject now to a maximum total income of £800 for a married couple. In their case, even though their income may be wholly unearned, or in part unearned, if their total income is below the ceiling for the age relief, they get the benefit of the two-ninths of earned income relief. So far, so good. In both cases this year the Chancellor has seen fit to make further concessions to old folk living on small incomes in each of these reliefs. But for the small income relief he has made no concession.
The small income relief, which the Chancellor introduced for the first time in 1952, caters for a no less deserving section of the tax-paying community. Although these people are not elderly, many of them are infirm and unable to earn a living. Often they live lonely lives on small incomes bequeathed to them by their parents, or their income is derived from hard-earned savings over a period of years. Particularly is this class of taxpayer deserving of sympathy where the person is incapacitated by health or infirmity from going out to work and is doing his best to exist on a relatively small income. So we hope that the Chancellor will view the proposal we make with sympathy.
I am not able to form any estimate of the cost of this proposal; there are no 932 figures upon which I could do so. But the Financial Secretary no doubt will tell us. In considering the proposal we are making, I do not think that the Chancellor should rest wholly on considerations of cost, unless they are truly embarrassing to him from a budgetary point of view. I am sure that the sympathy which his predecessor, the present Lord Privy Seal, extended to this class of taxpayer will also be extended by the present Chancellor. We therefore expect to hear from the Financial Secretary that some adjustment in the ceiling of small income relief can now be made.
§ Mr. Simon
The pleasant part of following the hon. Member for Sowerby (Mr. Houghton) lies in the fact that from his great knowledge of the tax code he performs the task which generally falls upon the Government spokesman—giving a history of the facts and setting out the main arguments which affected the introduction of an allowance and its subsequent movement. All I can say is that I am grateful to him. What he said was, of course, perfectly accurate and I am excused, and welcomedly excused, by the Committee from repeating it.
The hon. Member asked what the cost would be if this Amendment were adopted. It would be £750,000, which is a substantial sum. Nevertheless, I think that he was quite right when he said that the Chancellor would not rest purely on the consideration of cost in asking the Committee to reject such an Amendment as this. If I ask the Committee to reject it, as I do, that is not because I do not recognise that there is a great deal in what the hon. Member said.
I am not satisfied that a sufficient case has been made to deal with this allowance in isolation. I am sure that the hon. Member was right when he said that some needy people under 65 years of age would be helped by this Amendment, people who are living on small investment incomes some of whom are undoubtedly ailing, but they are not the only people who would be helped.
By this Amendment we would not be helping people in the very poorest circumstances. No one with an income of under £300 would be helped. It is primarily those with incomes between 933 £300 and £350, and to a lesser extent in the band who get marginal relief running up to £397, as in the case of a single man with purely investment income.
Among those who would be helped would be the young man who is just beginning to make his way and may have inherited a certain amount of capital which gives him a small investment income. Although, of course, those whose income is below £350 are obviously not living in conditions of affluence, they cannot be the sort of people who have a primary call on such exemptions as the Chancellor can allow at the moment.
The second point really repeats the one that I ventured to make in discussing the previous Amendments, that we cannot judge an allowance of this sort in isolation. It must be viewed, as I think was accepted throughout the Committee in that discussion, and particularly in the case of this allowance, in relation to the basic personal allowances which are of primary importance, the single person's allowance and the married person's allowance. This particular allowance is far more relevant to them than to the age exemption and to the age relief. The age relief has been put up, as the hon. Member said, but it is of a quite different character from this relief.
The purpose of the age relief is to equate the liability of the elderly taxpayer who, in retirement, is living on an investment income, with the liability of a similar taxpayer living in retirement on a pension and to ensure that the same proportion of their income ranks for earned income allowance. Viewed in that way, I submit to the Committee that although this is a case which must clearly be considered when we reconsider the basic personal allowances it is not one which should be dealt with in isolation.
I know that the hon. and learned Member for Kettering (Mr. Mitchison) will repeat his pleasing gibe, which he made on the last series of Amendments, that we say we cannot move our right foot forward without our left foot and that we cannot move our left foot forward without our right foot and, therefore, that we must stand still. But in point of fact we have not stood still in this Budget. We have made improvements in the allowances of those who, I think the Committee generally has 934 shown agreement, primarily ought to be helped this year. The aged we have helped, through the age allowance, age relief and age exemption.
As for the rest, the other allowances—I hope that this is not an unfair point—particularly now that the Committee have negatived the improvement in the housekeeper allowance and the dependent relative allowance—
§ Mr. Simon
—only just, but that was the decision taken by the Committee—nothing can be done this year in the basic personal allowances, where any improvement costs a great deal of money. In view of that, I think the improvement of this relief must wait until the basic personal allowances are dealt with again.
§ Mr. Mitchison
From time to time I hear noises from the benches opposite about people with small fixed incomes. When we come to deal with small fixed incomes a noise is not made and the Government are allowed to get away with what they are proposing to get away with today. These are not only small fixed incomes, but small incomes of any kind. Why an income should be less entitled to consideration when, from being a small fixed income, it becomes a small diminishing income because the Government continue to tax it, I have never understood.
Let us be clear. What we are dealing with is people who are getting between £6 and £7 a week to live on with total relief under this Clause and between £7 and £8 a week with partial relief under the Clause. The very simple question we have to face as a Committee is: is it right that people getting that amount of income should have to pay Income Tax? We have to face it having regard to the possibility that some time or other the Chancellor may think that with an Election approaching it is expedient to reduce the general rate of Income Tax. There were hints of that the other day. I say without hesitation that it is, of course, a much smaller matter, but far more necessary on any human grounds to refuse to tax incomes of that minute character than to make a reduction in the general rate. It is monstrous that these people should be made to pay Income Tax at all.
935 It may be that there is a long history to it, that it has been altered, reintroduced and modified, but cannot we for a moment get rid of reports which have been written by taxation experts, get rid for a moment of the Treasury point of view, get rid of the nicety of keeping all these things in balance, even disembarrass ourselves of the difficulty of where to begin, and just treat this single problem as a human one? Is it really right that somebody getting £6 or £7 a week should be made to pay Income Tax? Is it really right that somebody getting £7 or £8 a week should be made to pay on the same basis as higher income earners?
I should have thought there could be only one answer to that. Although, on the last group of Amendments, we have been talking about the part they played in the system of gradation and the rest, I should have thought that this was a case where we have the most simple question and that the present position is that the Government consider that people with incomes of that size should be taxed either fully or partially and should not get complete or partial relief.
§ 5.30 p.m.
§ Every consideration of reasonable humanity ought to induce us to say the opposite. If the Government are to persist in resisting the Amendment, I hope that we shall not hear from them any more stuff and nonsense about special relief for those on small fixed incomes. I hope that we shall hear none of the other noises on this subject which from time to time are made on the Government benches. Here is a perfectly clear way in which the Tory Party, if it chooses, can show that it has some regard for a class of people who are living in extreme and growing difficulties because of present prices and the rising cost of living.
§ To continue to levy Income Tax on them at this level seems to me plain inhumanity. Let us do our best to get the Government to mend their ways and to live up to some of their talk about small fixed incomes.
§ Question put, That those words be there inserted:—
§ The Committee divided: Ayes 216, Noes 253.939
|Division No. 156.]||AYES||[5.32 p.m.|
|Ainsley, J. W.||Cullen, Mrs. A.||Henderson, Rt. Hn. A. (Rwly Regis)|
|Albu, A. H.||Davies, Rt. Hn. Clement (Montgomery)||Herbison, Miss M.|
|Allaun, Frank (Salford, E.)||Davies, Ernest (Enfield, E.)||Hewitson, Capt. M.|
|Allen, Arthur (Bosworth)||Davies, Stephen (Merthyr)||Holman, P.|
|Allen, Scholefield (Crewe)||de Freitas, Geoffrey||Holmes, Horace|
|Awbery, S. S.||Diamond, John||Holt, A. F.|
|Bacon, Miss Alice||Dodds, N. N.||Houghton, Douglas|
|Balfour, A.||Donnelly, D. L.||Hoy, J. H.|
|Bellenger, Rt. Hon. F. J.||Dugdale, Rt. Hn. John (W. Brmwch)||Hubbard, T. F.|
|Bence, C. R. (Dunbartonshire, E.)||Ede, Rt. Hon. J. C.||Hughes, Emrys (S. Ayrshire)|
|Benn, Hn. Wedgwood (Bristol, S. E.)||Edelman, M.||Hunter, A. E.|
|Benson, Sir George||Edwards, Rt. Hon. John (Brighouse)||Hynd, H. (Accrington)|
|Beswick, Frank||Edwards, Rt. Hon. Ness (Caerphilly)||Hynd, J. B. (Attercliffe)|
|Bevan, Rt. Hon. A. (Ebbw Vale)||Edwards, Robert (Bilston)||Irvine, A. J. (Edge Hill)|
|Blenkinsop, A.||Edwards, W. J. (Stepney)||Irving, Sydney (Dartford)|
|Blyton, W. R.||Evans, Albert (Islington, S.W.)||Isaacs, Rt. Hon. G. A.|
|Boardman, H.||Evans, Edward (Lowestoft)||Janner, B.|
|Bottomley, Rt. Hon. A. G.||Fernyhough, E.||Jay, Rt. Hon. D. P. T.|
|Bowden, H. W. (Leicester, S. W.)||Finch, H. J.||Jeger, George (Goole)|
|Bowles, F. G.||Fitch, E. A.||Jeger, Mrs Lena (Holbn & St. Pncs, S.)|
|Boyd, T. C.||Foot, D. M.||Johnson, James (Rugby)|
|Braddock, Mrs. Elizabeth||Forman, J. C.||Jones, Rt. Hon. A. Creech (Wakefield)|
|Brockway, A. F.||Fraser, Thomas (Hamilton)||Jones, David (The Hartlepools)|
|Brown, Thomas (Ince)||Gaitskell, Rt. Hon. H. T. N.||Jones, J. Idwal (Wrexham)|
|Burke, W. A.||George, Lady Megan Lloyd (Car'then)||Key, Rt. Hon. C. W.|
|Burton, Miss F. E.||Gibson, C. W.||Lawson, G. M.|
|Butler, Herbert (Hackney, C.)||Gordon Walker, Rt. Hon. P. C.||Lee, Frederick (Newton)|
|Butler, Mrs. Joyce (Wood Green)||Greenwood, Anthony||Lee, Miss Jennie (Cannock)|
|Callaghan, L. J.||Grenfell, Rt. Hon. D. R.||Lewis, Arthur|
|Carmichael, J.||Grey, C. F.||Lindgren, G. S.|
|Cattle, Mrs. B. A.||Griffiths, Rt. Hon. James (Llanelly)||Lipton, Marcus|
|Champion, A. J.||Griffiths, William (Exchange)||Mabon, Dr. J. Dickson|
|Chapman, W. D.||Grimond, J.||McAlister, Mrs. Mary|
|Clunie, J.||Hale, Leslie||McCann, J.|
|Collins, V. J. (Shoreditch & Finsbury)||Hall, Rt. Hn. Glenvil (Colne Valley)||MacColl, J. E.|
|Cove, W. G.||Hamilton, W. W.||MacDermot, Niall|
|Craddock, George (Bradford, S.)||Harrison, J. (Nottingham, N.)||McGhee, H. G.|
|Cronin, J. D.||Hastings, S.||McInnes, J.|
|Crossman, R. H. S.||Hayman, F. H.||McLeavy, Frank|
|MacMillan, M. K. (Western Isles)||Pursey, Cmdr. H.||Taylor, Bernard (Mansfield)|
|MacPherson, Malcolm (Stirling)||Rankin, John||Taylor, John (West Lothian)|
|Mallalieu, E. L. (Brigg)||Redhead, E. C.||Thomas, George (Cardiff)|
|Mann, Mrs. Jean||Reeves, J.||Thomson, George (Dundee, E.)|
|Marquand, Rt Hon. H. A.||Reid, William||Thornton, E.|
|Mason, Roy||Reynolds, G. W.||Tomney, F.|
|Mellish, R. J.||Rhodes, H.||Ungoed-Thomas, Sir Lynn|
|Messer, Sir F.||Robens, Rt. Hon. A.||Usborne, H. C.|
|Mitchison, G. R.||Roberts, Albert (Normanton)||Wade, D. W.|
|Monslow, W.||Roberts, Goronwy (Caernarvon)||Warbey, W. N.|
|Moody, A. S.||Robinson, Kenneth (St. Pancras, N.)||Watkins, T. E.|
|Morris, Percy (Swansea, W.)||Rogers, George (Kensington, N.)||Weitzman, D.|
|Morrison, Rt. Hn. Herbert (Lewis' m, S.)||Ross, William||Wells, Percy (Faversham)|
|Mort, D. L.||Royle, C.||Wells, William (Walsall, N.)|
|Moyle, A.||Shinwell, Rt. Hon. E.||West, D. G.|
|Mulley, F. W.||Shurmer, P. L. E.||Wheeldon, W. E.|
|Neal, Harold (Bolsover)||Silverman, Julius (Aston)||White, Mrs. Eirene (E. Flint)|
|Noel-Baker, Rt. Hon. P. (Derby, S.)||Silverman, Sydney (Nelson)||Wilkins, W. A.|
|Oliver, G. H.||Simmons, C. J. (Brierley Hill)||Willey, Frederick|
|Oswald, T.||Skeffington, A. M.||Williams, David (Neath)|
|Owen, W. J.||Slater, Mrs. H. (Stoke, N.)||Williams, Rev. Llywelyn (Ab'tillery)|
|Padley, W. E.||Slater, J. (Sedgefield)||Williams, Rt. Hon. T. (Don Valley)|
|Paling, Rt. Hon. W. (Dearne Valley)||Smith, Ellis (Stoke, S.)||Williams, W. T. (Barons Court)|
|Pannell, Charles (Leeds, W.)||Sorensen, R. W.||Willis, Eustace (Edinburgh, E.)|
|Pargiter, G. A.||Soskice, Rt. Hon. Sir Frank||Wilson, Rt. Hon. Harold (Huyton)|
|Paton, John||Sparks, J. A.||Winterbottom, Richard|
|Pearson, A.||Spriggs, L.||Woodburn, Rt. Hon. A.|
|Peart, T. F.||Stewart, Michael (Fulham)||Woof, R. E.|
|Pentland, N.||Stonehouse, John||Yates, V. (Ladywood)|
|Popplewell, E.||Stones, W. (Consett)||Younger, Rt. Hon. K.|
|Prentice, R. E.||Strachey, Rt. Hon. J.||Zilliacus, K.|
|Price, J. T. (Westhoughton)||Summerskill, Rt. Hon. E.|
|Probert, A. R.||Swingler, S. T.||TELLERS FOR THE AYES:|
|Proctor, W. T.||Sylvester, G. O.||Mr. Short and Mr. Deer.|
|Agnew, Sir Peter||Cordeaux, Lt.-Col. J. K.||Harrison, A. B. C. (Maldon)|
|Aitken, W. T.||Craddock, Beresford (Spelthorne)||Harvey, John (Walthamstow, E.)|
|Amery, Julian (Preston, N.)||Crosthwaite-Eyre, Col. O. E.||Head, Rt. Hon. A. H.|
|Amory, Rt. Hn. Heathcoat (Tiverton)||Crowder, Sir John (Finchley)||Heald, Rt. Hon. Sir Lionel|
|Arbuthnot, John||Crowder, Petre (Ruislip—Northwood)||Heath, Rt. Hon. E. R. C.|
|Armstrong, C. W.||Cunningham, Knox||Henderson-Stewart, Sir James|
|Ashton, H.||Currie, C. B. H.||Hill, Rt. Hon. Charles (Luton)|
|Atkins, H. E.||Davidson, Viscountess||Hill, Mrs. E. (Wythenshawe)|
|Baldock, Lt.-Cmdr. J. M.||D' Avigdor-Goldsmid, Sir Henry||Hinchingbrooke, Viscount|
|Baldwin, A. E.||Deedes, W. F.||Hirst, Geoffrey|
|Barber, Anthony||Digby, Simon Wingfield||Hobson, John (Warwick & Leam'gt'n)|
|Barlow, Sir John||Donaldson, Cmdr. C. E. McA.||Holland-Martin, C. J.|
|Barter, John||Doughty, C. J. A.||Hope, Lord John|
|Batsford, B. C. C.||du Cann, E. D. L.||Hornby, R. P.|
|Beamish, Col. Tufton||Dugdale, Rt. Hn. Sir T. (Richmond)||Hornsby-Smith, Miss M. P.|
|Bell, Philip (Bolton, E.)||Duncan, Sir James||Horobin, Sir Ian|
|Bell, Ronald (Bucks, S.)||Duthie, W. S.||Howard, Gerald (Cambridgeshire)|
|Bennett, F. M. (Torquay)||Eden, J. B. (Bournemouth, West)||Howard, John (Test)|
|Bevins, J. R. (Toxteth)||Elliott, R.W. (Ne' castle upon Tyne, N.)||Hudson, W. R. A. (Hull, N.)|
|Biggs-Davison, J. A.||Emmet, Hon. Mrs. Evelyn||Hughes Hallett, Vice-Admiral J.|
|Bingham, R. M.||Errington, Sir Eric||Hughes-Young, M. H. C.|
|Birch, Rt. Hon. Nigel||Farey-Jones, F. W.||Hurd, A. R.|
|Bishop, F. P.||Fell, A.||Hutchison, Michael Clark (E 'b' gh, S.)|
|Black, C. W.||Finlay, Graeme||Hutchison, Sir James (Scotstoun)|
|Body, R. F.||Fisher, Nigel||Hyde, Montgomery|
|Boothby, Sir Robert||Fletcher-Cooke, C.||Hylton-Foster, Rt. Hon. Sir Harry|
|Bossom, Sir Alfred||Fort, R.||Iremonger, T. L.|
|Boyle, Sir Edward||Fraser, Sir Ian (M' cmbe & Lonsdale)||Irvine, Bryant Godman (Rye)|
|Braithwaite, Sir Albert (Harrow, W.)||Freeth, Denzil||Jenkins, Robert (Dulwich)|
|Brooman-White, R. C.||Gammans, Lady||Jennings, J. C. (Burton)|
|Browne, J. Nixon (Craigton)||Garner-Evans, E. H.||Johnson, Dr. Donald (Carlisle)|
|Bryan, P.||George, J. C. (Pollok)||Johnson, Eric (Blackley)|
|Bullus, Wing Commander E. E.||Gibson-Watt, D.||Jones, Rt. Hon. Aubrey (Hall Green)|
|Burden, F. F. A.||Glyn, Col. Richard H.||Joseph, Sir Keith|
|Butcher, Sir Herbert||Godber, J. B.||Joynson-Hicks, Hon. Sir Lancelot|
|Butler, Rt. Hn. R. A. (Saffron Walden)||Goodhart, Philip||Kaberry, D.|
|Campbell, Sir David||Gough, C. F. H.||Keegan, D.|
|Carr, Robert||Gower, H. R.||Kerby, Capt. H. B.|
|Cary, Sir Robert||Graham, Sir Fergus||Kerr, Sir Hamilton|
|Channon, Sir Henry||Grant, W. (Woodside)||Kershaw, J. A.|
|Chichester-Clark, R.||Grant-Ferris, Wg Cdr. R. (Nantwich)||Kimball, M|
|Cole, Norman||Green, A.||Langford-Holt, J. A.|
|Conant, Maj. Sir Roger||Grosvenor, Lt.-Col. R. G.||Leather, E. H. C.|
|Cooke, Robert||Gurden, Harold||Leavey, J. A.|
|Cooper, A. E.||Hall, John (Wycombe)||Leburn, W. G.|
|Cooper-Key, E. M.||Harris, Reader (Heston)||Legge-Bourke, Maj. E. A. H.|
|Legh, Hon. Peter (Petersffetd)||Nicolson, N. (B 'n' m'th, E. & Chr'ch)||Spearman, Sir Alexander|
|Lindsay, Hon. James (Davon, N.)||Noble, Comdr. Rt. Hon. Allan||Speir, R. M.|
|Linstead, Sir H. N.||Noble, M. A. C. (Argyll)||Stevens, Geoffrey|
|Lloyd, Maj. Sir Guy (Renfrew, E.)||Nugent, G. R. H.||Steward, Harold (Stockport, S.)|
|Lloyd, Rt. Hon. Selwyn (Wirral)||Oakshott, H. D.||Steward, Sir William (Woolwich, W.)|
|Low, Rt. Hon. Sir Toby||O'Neill, Hn. Phelim (Co. Antrim, N.)||Stuart, Rt. Hon. James (Moray)|
|Lucas, Sir Jocelyn (Pertsmouth, S.)||Ormsby-Gore, Rt. Hon. W. D.||Studholme, Sir Henry|
|Lucas, P. B. (Brentford &-Chiswick)||Orr, Capt. L. P. S.||Summers, Sir Spencer|
|Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh||Orr-Ewing, Charles Ian (Hendon, N.)||Sumner, W. D. M. (Orpington)|
|McAdden, S. J.||Osborne, C.||Taylor, Sir Charles (Eastbourne)|
|Macdonald, Sir Peter||Page, R. G.||Teeling, W.|
|Mackeson, Brig, Sir Harry||Pannell, N. A. (Kirkdale)||Temple, John M.|
|McKibbin, Alan||Partridge, E.||Thomas, Leslie (Canterbury)|
|Mackie, J. H. (Galloway)||Peel, W. J.||Thomas, P. J. M. (Conway)|
|McLaughlin, Mrs. P.||Peyton, J. W. W.||Thompson, Kenneth (Walton)|
|McLean, Neil (Inverness)||Pickthorn, K. W. M.||Thompson, R. (Croydon, S.)|
|MacLeod, John (Ross & Cromarty)||Pilkington, Capt, R. A.||Thorneycroft, Rt. Hon. P.|
|Macmillan, Rt. Hn. Harold (Bromley)||Pitman, I. J.||Thornton-Kemsley, Sir Colin|
|Macmillan, Maurice (Halifax)||Pitt, Miss E. M.||Tiley, A. (Bradford, W.)|
|Macpherson, Niall (Dumfries)||Pott, H. P.||Turton, Rt. Hon. R. H.|
|Maddan, Martin||Powell, J. Enoch||Tweedsmuir, Lady|
|Maitland, Hon. Patrick (Lanark)||Price, David (Eastleigh)||Vane, W. M. F.|
|Markham, Major Sir Frank||Price, Henry (Lewisham, W.)||Vaughan-Morgan, J. K.|
|Marlowe, A. A. H.||Prior-Palmer, Brig. O. L.||Vickers, Miss Joan|
|Marples, Rt. Hon. A. E.||Profumo, J. D.||Vosper, Rt. Hon. D. F.|
|Marshall, Douglas||Ramsden, J. E.||Wakefield, Edward (Derbyshire, W.)|
|Mathew, R.||Rawlinson, Peter||Wakefield, Sir Wavell (St. M'lebone)|
|Maudling, Rt. Hon. R.||Redmayne, M.||Wall, Patrick|
|Mawby, R. L.||Roberts, Sir Peter (Heeley)||Ward, Rt. Hon. G. R. (Worcester)|
|Maydon, Lt.-Comdr. S. L. C.||Robinson, Sir Roland (Blackpool, S.)||Webster, D. W. E.|
|Medlicott, Sir Frank||Rodgers, John (Sevenoaks)||Whitelaw, W. S. I.|
|Milligan, Rt. Hon. W. R.||Roper, Sir Harold||Williams, Paul (Sunderland, S.)|
|Morrison, John (Salisbury)||Ropner, Col. Sir Leonard||Williams, R. Dudley (Exeter)|
|Mott-Radclyffe, Sir Charles||Russell, R. S.||Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)|
|Nabarro, G. D. N.||Sharples, R. C.||Wood, Hon. R.|
|Nairn, D. L. S.||Shepherd, William||Woollam, John Victor|
|Neave, Airey||Simon, J. E. S. (Middlesbrough, W.)|
|Nicholls, Harmar||Smithers, Peter (Winchester)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES:|
|Nicholson, Sir Godfrey (Farnham)||Smyth, Brig. Sir John (Norwood)||Sir G. Wills and Colonel J. H. Harrison.|
Amendment proposed: In page 7, line 27, at end insert:
(4) In section two hundred and seventeen of the Income Tax Act, 1952 (Claimant depending on services of a daughter), for the reference to forty pounds (indicating the amount of
§ relief) there shall be substituted a reference to fifty pounds.—[Mr. Mitchison.]
§ Question put, That those words be inserted:—
§ The Committee divided: Ayes 216, Noes 255.943
|Division No. 157.]||AYES||[5.41 p.m.|
|Ainsley, J. W.||Champion, A. J.||George, Lady Megan Lloyd (Car' then)|
|Albu, A. H.||Chapman, W. D.||Gibson, C. W.|
|Allaun, Frank (Salford, E.)||Clunie, J.||Gordon Walker, Rt. Hon. P. C.|
|Allen, Arthur (Bosworth)||Collins, V. J. (Shoreditch & Finsbury)||Greenwood, Anthony|
|Allen, Scholefield (Crewe)||Cove, W. G.||Grenfell, Rt. Hon. D. R.|
|Awbery, S. S.||Craddock, George (Bradford, S.)||Grey, C. F.|
|Bacon, Miss Alice||Cronin, J. D.||Griffiths, Rt. Hon. James (Llanelly)|
|Balfour, A.||Crossman, R. H. S.||Griffiths, William (Exchange)|
|Bellenger, Rt. Hon. F. J.||Dalton, Rt. Hon. H.||Grimond, J.|
|Bence, C. R. (Dunbartonshire, E.)||Davies, Rt. Hon. Clement (Montgomery)||Hale, Leslie|
|Benn, Hn. Wedgwood (Bristol, S. E.)||Davies, Ernest (Enfield, E.)||Hall, Rt. Hn. Glenvil (Colne Valley)|
|Benson, Sir George||Davies, Stephen (Merthyr)||Hamilton, W. W.|
|Beswick, Frank||de Freitas, Geoffrey||Harrison, J. (Nottingham, N.)|
|Bevan, Rt. Hon. A. (Ebbw Vale)||Diamond, John||Hastings, S.|
|Blenkinsop, A.||Dodds, N. N.||Hayman, F. H.|
|Blyton, W. R.||Donnelly, D. L.||Henderson, Rt. Hn. A. (Rwly Regis)|
|Boardman, H.||Dugdale, Rt. Hn. John (W. Brmwch)||Herbison, Miss M.|
|Bottomley, Rt. Hon. A. G.||Ede, Rt. Hon. J. C.||Hewitson, Capt. M.|
|Bowden, H. W. (Leicester, S. W.)||Edelman, M.||Holman, P.|
|Bowles, F. G.||Edwards, Rt. Hon. John (Brighouse)||Holmes, Horace|
|Boyd, T. C.||Edwards, Rt. Hon. Ness (Caerphilly)||Holt, A. F.|
|Braddock, Mrs. Elizabeth||Edwards, Robert (Bilston)||Houghton, Douglas|
|Brockway, A. F.||Edwards, W. J. (Stepney)||Howell, Charles (Perry Barr)|
|Brown, Thomas (Ince)||Evans, Albert (Islington, S. W.)||Hoy, J. H.|
|Burke, W. A.||Evans, Edward (Lowestoft)||Hubbard, T. F.|
|Burton, Miss F. E.||Farnyhough, E.||Hughes, Emrys (S. Ayrshire)|
|Butler, Herbert (Hackney, C.)||Finch, H. J.||Hunter, A. E.|
|Butler, Mrs. Joyce (Wood Green)||Foot, D. M.||Hynd, H. (Accrington)|
|Callaghan, L. J.||Forman, J. C.||Hynd, J. B. (Attercliffe)|
|Carmichael, J.||Fraser, Thomas (Hamilton)||Irvine, A. J. (Edge Hill)|
|Castle, Mrs. B. A.||Gaitskell, Rt. Hon. H. T. N.||Irving, Sydney (Dartford)|
|Isaacs, Rt. Hon. G. A.||Oliver, G. H.||Sparks, J. A.|
|Janner, B.||Oswald, T.||Spriggs, L.|
|Jay, Rt. Hon. D. P. T.||Owen, W. J.||Stewart, Michael (Fulham)|
|Jeger, George (Goole)||Padley, W. E.||Stonehouse, John|
|Jeger, Mrs. Lena (Holbn & St. Pncs, S.)||Paling, Rt. Hon. W. (Dearne Valley)||Stones, W. (Consett)|
|Johnson, James (Rugby)||Pannell, Charles (Leeds, W.)||Strachey, Rt. Hon. J.|
|Jones, Rt. Hon. A. Creech (Wakefield)||Pargiter, G. A.||Summerskill, Rt. Hon. E.|
|Jones, David (The Hartlepools)||Paton, John||Swingler, S. T.|
|Jones, Elwyn (W. Ham, S.)||Pearson, A.||Sylvester, G. O.|
|Jones, J. Idwal (Wrexham)||Peart, T. F.||Taylor, Bernard (Mansfield)|
|Key, Rt. Hon. C. W.||Pentland, N.||Taylor, John (West Lothian)|
|Lawson, G. M.||Popplewell, E.||Thomas, George (Cardiff)|
|Lee, Frederick (Newton)||Prentice, R. E.||Thomson, George (Dundee, E.)|
|Lee, Miss Jennie (Cannock)||Prise, J. T. (Westhoughton)||Thornton, E.|
|Lewis, Arthur||Probert, A. R.||Tomney, F.|
|Lindgren, G. S.||Proctor, W. T.||Ungoed-Thomas, Sir Lynn|
|Lipton, Marcus||Pursey, Cmdr. H.||Usborne, H. C.|
|Mabon, Dr. J. Dickson||Rankin, John||Wade, D. W.|
|McCann, J.||Redhead, E. C.||Warbey, W. N.|
|MacColl, J. E.||Reeves, J.||Watkins, T. E.|
|MacDermot, Niall||Reid, William||Weitzman, D.|
|McGhee, H. G.||Reynolds, G. W.||Wells, Percy (Favarsham)|
|McInnes, J.||Rhodes, H.||Wells, William (Walsall, N.)|
|McLeavy, Frank||West, D. G.|
|MacMillan, M. K. (Western Isles)||Robens, Rt. Hon. A.||Wheeldon, W. E.|
|MacPherson, Malcolm (Stirling)||Roberts, Albert (Normanton)||White, Mrs. Eirene (E. Flint)|
|Mallalieu, E. L. (Brigg)||Roberts, Coronwy (Caernarvon)||Wilkins, W. A.|
|Mann, Mrs. Jean||Robinson, Kenneth (St. Panoras, N.)||Willey, Frederick|
|Marquand, Rt. Hon. H. A.||Rogers, George (Kensington, N.)||Williams, David (Neath)|
|Mason, Roy||Ross, William||Williams, Rev, Llywelyn (Ab'tillery)|
|Mellish, R. J.||Royle, C.||Williams, Rt. Hon. T. (Don valley)|
|Messer, Sir F.||Shinwell, Rt. Hon. E.||Williams, W. T. (Barons Court)|
|Mitchison, G. R.||Shurmer, P. L. E.||Willis, Eustace (Edinburgh, E.)|
|Monslow, W.||Silverman, Julius (Aston)||Wilson, Rt. Hon. Harold (Huyton)|
|Moody, A. S.||Silverman, Sydney (Nelson)||Winterbottom, Richard|
|Morris, Percy (Swansea, W.)||Simmons, C. J. (Brierley Hill)||Woodburn, Rt. Hon. A.|
|Morrison, Rt. Hn. Herbert (Lewis' m, S.)||Skeffington, A. M.||Woof, R. E.|
|Mort, D. L.||Slater, Mrs. H. (Stoke, N.)||Yates, V. (Ladywood)|
|Moyle, A.||Slater, J. (Sedgefield)||Younger, Rt. Hon. K.|
|Mulley, F. W.||Smith, Ellis (Stoke, S.)||Zilllacus, K.|
|Neal, Harold (Bolsover)||Sorensen, R. W.|
|Noel-Baker, Rt. Hon. P. (Derby, S.)||Soskice, Rt. Hon. Sir Frank||TELLERS FOR THE AYES:|
|Mr. Short and Mr. Deer.|
|Agnew, Sir Peter||Carr, Robert||Garner-Evans, E. H.|
|Aitken, W. T.||Cary, Sir Robert||George, J. C. (Pollok)|
|Amery, Julian (Preston, N.)||Channon, Sir Henry||Gibson-Watt, D.|
|Amery, Rt. Hn. Heathcoat (Tiverton)||Chichester-Clark, R.||Glyn, Col. Richard H.|
|Arbuthnot, John||Cole, Norman||Godber, J. B.|
|Armstrong, C. W.||Conant, Maj. Sir Roger||Goodhart, Philip|
|Ashton, H.||Cooke, Robert||Gough, C. F. H.|
|Atkins, H. E.||Cooper, A. E.||Gower, H. R.|
|Baldock, Lt.-Cmdr. J. M.||Cooper-Key, E. M.||Graham, Sir Fergus|
|Baldwin, A. E.||Cordeaux, Lt.-Col. J. K.||Grant, W. (Woodside)|
|Balniel, Lord||Craddock, Beresford (Spelthorne)||Grant-Ferris, Wg Cdr. R. (Nantwich)|
|Barber, Anthony||Crosthwaite-Eyre, Col. O. E.||Green, A.|
|Barlow, Sir John||Crowder, Sir John (Finchley)||Grosvenor, Lt.-Col. R. G.|
|Barter, John||Crowder, Petre (Ruislip—Northwood)||Gurden, Harold|
|Batsford, B. C. C.||Cunningham, Knox||Hall, John (Wycombe)|
|Beamish, Col. Tufton||Currie, G. B. H.||Harris, Reader (Heston)|
|Bell, Philip (Bolton, E.)||Davidson, Viscountess||Harrison, A. B. C. (Maldon)|
|Bell, Ronald (Bucks, S.)||D' Avigdor-Goldsmid, Sir Henry||Harrison, Col. J. H. (Eye)|
|Bennett, F. M. (Torquay)||Deedes, W. F.||Harvey, John (Walthamstow, E.)|
|Bavins, J. R. (Toxteth)||Digby, Simon Wingfield||Head, Rt. Hon. A. H.|
|Biggs-Davison, J. A.||Donaldson, Cmdr. C. E. McA.||Heald, Rt. Hon. Sir Lionel|
|Bingham, R. M.||Doughty, C. J. A.||Heath, Rt. Hon. E. R. G.|
|Birch, Rt. Hon. Nigel||du Cann, E. D. L.||Henderson-Stewart, Sir James|
|Bishop, F. P.||Dugdale, Rt. Hn. Sir T. (Richmond)||Hill, Rt. Hon. Charles (Luton)|
|Hill, Mrs. E. (Wythenshawe)|
|Black, C. W.||Duncan, Sir James||Hinchingbrooke, Viscount|
|Body, R. F.||Duthie, W. S.||Hirst, Geoffrey|
|Boothby, Sir Robert||Eden, J. B. (Bournemouth, West)||Hobson, John (Warwick & Leam' gt' n)|
|Bossom, Sir Alfred||Elliott, R. W. (Ne'castle upon Tyne, N.)||Holland-Martin, C. J.|
|Boyle, Sir Edward||Emmet, Hon. Mrs. Evelyn||Hope, Lord John|
|Braine, B. R.||Erringtpn, Sir Eric||Hornby, R. P.|
|Braithwaite, Sir Albert (Harrow, W.)||Farey-Jones, F. W.||Hornsby-Smith, Miss M. P.|
|Brooman-White, R. C.||Fell, A.||Horobin, Sir Ian|
|Browne, J. Nixon (Craigton)||Finlay, Graeme||Howard, Gerald (Cambridgeshire)|
|Bryan, P.||Fisher, Nigel||Howard, John (Test)|
|Bullus, Wing Commander E. E.||Fletcher-Cooke, C.||Hudson, W. R. A. (Hull, N.)|
|Burden, F. F. A.||Fort, R.||Hughes Hallett, Vice-Admiral J.|
|Butcher, Sir Herbert||Fraser, Sir Ian (M'cmbe & Lonsdale)||Hurd, A. R.|
|Butler, Rt. Hn. R. A. (Saffron Walden)||Freeth, Denzil||Hutchison, Michael Clark (E 'b' gh, S.)|
|Campbell, Sir David||Gammans, Lady||Hutchison, Sir James (Sootstoun)|
|Hyde, Montgomery||Marshall, Douglas||Ropner, Col. Sir Leonard|
|Hylton-Foster, Rt. Hon. Sir Harry||Mathew, R.||Russell, R. S.|
|Iremonger, T. L.||Maudling, Rt. Hon. R.||Sharples, R. C.|
|Irvine, Bryant Godman (Rye)||Mawby, R. L.||Shepherd, William|
|Jenkins, Robert (Dulwich)||Maydon, Lt.-Comdr. S. L. C.||Simon, J. E. S. (Middlesbrough, W.)|
|Jennings, J. C. (Burton)||Medlicott, Sir Frank||Smithers, Peter (Winchester)|
|Johnson, Dr. Donald (Carlisle)||Milligan, Rt. Hon. W. R.||Smyth, Brig, Sir John (Norwood)|
|Johnson, Eric (Blackley)||Morrison, John (Salisbury)||Spearman, Sir Alexander|
|Jones, Rt. Hon. Aubrey (Hall Green)||Mott-Radclyffe, Sir Charles||Speir, R. M.|
|Joseph, Sir Keith||Nabarro, G. D. N.||Stevens, Geoffrey|
|Joynson-Hicks, Hon. Sir Lancelot||Nairn, D. L. S.||Steward, Harold (Stockport, S.)|
|Kaberry, D.||Neave, Airey||Steward, Sir William (Woolwich, W.)|
|Keegan, D.||Nicholls, Harmar||Stuart, Rt. Hon. James (Moray)|
|Kerby, Capt. H. B.||Nicholson, Sir Godfrey (Farnham)||Studholme, Sir Henry|
|Kerr, Sir Hamilton||Nicolson, N. (B'n'm'th, E. & Chr'ch)||Summers, Sir Spencer|
|Kershaw, J. A.||Noble, Comdr. Rt. Hon. Allan||Sumner, W. D. M. (Orpington)|
|Kimball, M.||Noble, M. A. C. (Argyll)||Taylor, Sir Charles (Eastbourne)|
|Langford-Holt, J. A.||Nugent, G. R. H.||Teeling, W.|
|Leather, E. H. C.||Oakshott, H. D.||Temple, John M.|
|Leavey, J. A.||O'Neill, Hn. Phelim (Co. Antrim, N.)||Thomas, Leslie (Canterbury)|
|Leburn, W. G.||Ormsby-Gore, Rt. Hon. W. D.||Thomas, P. J. M. (Conway)|
|Legge-Bourke, Maj. E. A. H.||Thompson, Kenneth (Walton)|
|Legh, Hon. Peter (Petersfield)||Orr, Capt. L. P. S.||Thompson, R. (Croydon, S.)|
|Lindsay, Hon. James (Devon, N.)||Orr-Ewing, Charles Ian (Hendon, N.)||Thorneycroft, Rt. Hon. P.|
|Linstead, Sir H. N.||Osborne, C.||Thomton-Kemsley, Sir Colin|
|Lloyd, Maj. Sir Guy (Renfrew, E.)||Page, R. G.||Tiley, A. (Bradford, W.)|
|Lloyd, Rt. Hon. Selwyn (Wirral)||Pannell, N. A. (Kirkdale)||Turton, Rt. Hon. R. H.|
|Low, Rt. Hon. Sir Toby||Partridge, E.||Tweedsmuir, Lady|
|Lucas, Sir Jocelyn (Portsmouth, S.)||Peel, W. J.||Vane, W. M. F.|
|Lucas, P. B. (Brentford & Chiswick)||Peyton, J. W. W.||Vaughan-Morgan, J. K.|
|Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh||Pickthorn, K. W. M.||Vickers, Miss Joan|
|McAdden, S. J.||Pilkington, Capt. R. A.||Vosper, Rt. Hon. D. F.|
|Macdonald, Sir Peter||Pitman, I. J.||Wakefield, Edward (Derbyshire, W.)|
|Mackeson, Brig. Sir Harry||Pitt, Miss E. M.||Wakefield, Sir Wavell (St. M' lebone)|
|McKibbin, Alan||Pott, H. P.||Wall, Patrick|
|Mackie, J. H. (Galloway)||Powell, J. Enoch||Ward, Rt. Hon. G. R. (Worcester)|
|McLaughlin, Mrs. P.||Price, David (Eastleigh)||Ward, Dame Irene (Tynemouth)|
|McLean, Neil (Inverness)||Price, Henry (Lewisham, W.)||Webster, D. W. E.|
|MacLeod, John (Ross & Cromarty)||Prior-Palmer, Brig. O. L.||Whitelaw, W. S. I.|
|Macmillan, Rt. Hn. Harold (Bromley)||Profumo, J. D.||Williams, Paul (Sunderland, S.)|
|Macmillan, Maurice (Halifax)||Ramsden, J. E.||Williams, R. Dudley (Exeter)|
|Macpherson, Niall (Dumfries)||Rawlinson, Peter||Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)|
|Maddan, Martin||Redmayne, M.||Wood, Hon. R.|
|Maitland, Hon. Patrick (Lanark)||Roberts, Sir Peter (Heeley)||Woollam, John Victor|
|Markham, Major Sir Frank||Robinson, Sir Roland (Blackpool, S.)|
|Marlowe, A. A. H.||Rodgers, John (Sevenoaks)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES:|
|Marples, Rt. Hon. A. E.||Roper, Sir Harold||Sir G. Wills and Mr. Hughes-Young.|
§ Motion made, and Question proposed, That the Clause stand part of the Bill.
§ Mr. Houghton
This Clause contains all the reliefs which the Chancellor proposes to make this time in the form of personal reliefs to Income Tax payers. It is, of course, the Clause which usually concerns the greatest number of taxpayers, because the millions of ordinary taxpayers, men and women, workers in factories, shops and offices, are principally if not wholly concerned with personal reliefs, reliefs for earned income, concessions for premiums paid on life assurance policies, National Insurance contributions, differential rates of tax, and probably the tax treatment of small savings in co-operative societies, the Post Office, building societies, and so forth. Those things really make up the Income Tax interest of the very large proportion of taxpayers of the country.
Dividend stripping is not for them. Covenants, capital gains and expense accounts are all forbidden areas to most 944 of them. They are not able to employ their wives as secretaries, receptionists, farm managers or house decorators. Indeed, they suffer the handicap of very little scope for arranging their affairs to the best advantage from a tax point of view.
§ Mr. Houghton
I do not want to stray from the Clause before the Committee, but I will say a word to my hon. Friend about some of the matters arising on maintenance claims under Schedule A. If a taxpayer's wife is a competent paper hanger or painter, he may employ her to redecorate the house and, as long as he genuinely pays her wages and she accounts for the tax on those wages, if any, that is perfectly admissible from the point of view of a maintenance claim under Schedule A. However, that is not under the Clause. I was merely illustrating 945 some of the respects in which it is possible to arrange one's affairs to obtain the best tax advantage. As I say, most of the taxpayers to whom I have referred pay just what the Chancellor demands of them under P.A.Y.E.
I suppose that one day the Committee ought to give some attention to the disparity between the treatment of those who pay their tax under P.A.Y.E. and those who pay on profits or gains under Schedule D. Those who pay as they earn begin to pay their tax in the very first pay week after the beginning of the Income Tax year, whereas those who pay under Schedule D pay the first instalment eight months after the beginning of the Income Tax year and have, shall I say, some room for manoœvre in regard to the payment of the tax. The only two agents which have direct access to the pay packet and can take money out of it irrespective of the special circumstances of the individual are the Minister of Pensions and National Insurance for National Insurance contributions and the Chancellor of the Exchequer for Income Tax. These are very ruthless rights conceded to the Administration to recover debts from wages at the time they are paid.
The Committee will bear in mind that there is no discount given to the P.A.Y.E. taxpayer for beginning his payments so early in the Income Tax year; no personal relief is given by Clause 12 or by any previous Finance Act for this different date of commencement. I am not, of course, overlooking that in the year of change, years back, there was a forgiveness of the accumulated instalments of tax under the old arrangements in order to start the P.A.Y.E. scheme with a clean slate.
§ Mr. Diamond
Does my hon. Friend recollect under which Government that was done? Was it a Labour Government or not?
§ Mr. Houghton
I think that it was the Coalition Government when the P.A.Y.E. arrangement was introduced. There are many thousands, perhaps some millions, of taxpayers now paying under P.A.Y.E. who had no benefit from the transitional arrangements and who look at the matter solely from a current tax point of view.
946 I have pointed out on previous occasions that a taxpayer under Schedule D is given longer in which to pay, and not only is the taxpayer under P.A.Y.E. given no discount for prompt payment but the Schedule D taxpayer is not charged interest until his tax has been due for more than three months and amounts to more than £1,000. Then the Chancellor charges him interest at the modest rate of 3 per cent., notwithstanding the credit squeeze and the fact that Bank Rate may be at twice that level of interest.
Taxpayers generally are very interested in what this Clause and the corresponding Clauses of other Finance Acts do in the matter of personal reliefs. This Clause does three things. In earlier debates, we went over them rather thoroughly. First, it increases the limit of income for exemption of the over-65s from £250 to £275 for a single person and from £400 to £440 for a married couple, with an extension of marginal relief in both cases. Secondly, it lifts once again, and for the third time since 1952, the limit of income qualifying for age relief for the over-65s. This time, the increase is from a ceiling of total income of £700 to £800, notwithstanding that it was increased from £600 to £700 last year. Thirdly, the Clause adjusts the limit of income of dependents in the case of dependent relative relief to take acount of the recent increase in the National Insurance retirement pension.
We may ask why the Chancellor has proposed these three things to the exclusion of others. So far in the debate, we have had little comment from the benches opposite about the treatment of those on small incomes, notwithstanding that the reliefs in Clause 12 are almost wholly confined to them. We missed the hon. Lady the Member for Tynemouth (Dame Irene Ward)—
§ 6.0 p.m.
§ Mr. Houghton
—in the early debates. I knew that the hon. Lady was present, but we were hoping that she would join with us in our plea to the Chancellor to extend still further the age relief provided for in this Clause, especially age exemption, and also for an increase in small income relief.
§ Mr. Houghton
I do not know what the hon. Lady did in the most recent Division, which was an effort to put into practice much of what she has urged upon her right hon. Friends.
The age exemption was a new relief last year. It differs in conception from age relief which still is confined to treating unearned income as if it were personal and, within the limits, giving the benefit of earned income relief. The Financial Secretary drew attention a few moments ago to the reason for age relief, namely, to give to elderly people who have retired on an annuity or investment income the corresponding benefit of earned income relief which is granted to the increasing number of people who are retiring on occupational pensions. We think that that provides some sort of equity between those who have to save for their retirement, like shopkeepers, traders and professional men in practice, and those who retire on occupational pensions.
What is the proper limit for this concession is a matter of opinion. Certainly the Chancellor seems to think that this relief is due for another improvement, notwithstanding the succession of improvements in the ceiling of this relief which have been given in recent years. It may be that we are getting near the limit of this concession. The limit of £800 ceiling with marginal relief is now going fairly high up the scale.
The other relief, age exemption, raises more acutely questions of equity between taxpayers of different ages. The ceiling is now increased from £250 to £275 for a single person and from £400 to £440 for a carried couple. On 6th May this year, in answer to my hon. Friend the Member for Wallsend (Mr. McKay), the figures which were given by the Chancellor revealed some disparities in the tax due on lower incomes according to age. The Committee ought not to lose sight of the effect of this relief on the tax liability of people in the same income group but of different ages. A married wage earner under 65 pays £18 12s. 6d. on an earned income of £450, but if one of a married couple is over 65 the tax payable on the same income is only £5. We in fact get three different amounts of tax on the same amount of income according to the nature of the income and the age of the taxpayer or his wife.
948 These facts were clearly brought out by the replies that the Chancellor gave to the Questions to which I have referred. If the income of £450 for a married couple, both of whom are under 65, is wholly unearned, then the tax that will have to be paid is £42 7s. 6d. If the income of £450 is wholly earned in the case of a couple under 65, the tax payable is £18 12s. 6d. With the same amount of income of £450, whether earned or unearned, in the case of a couple, one of whom is over 65, the tax payable is £5. Those figures raise some questions which are related to the theory that Income Tax is graduated according to the ability to pay.
I think that I have on a previous occasion referred to the Irishman who was a member of one of the early Royal Commissions on Income Tax. He could see no justification for giving relief on earned income. He said that if Income Tax is a tax levied according to assumed ability to pay, then Income Tax is no different, neither better nor worse, whether the money is earned or unearned.
We have gone a long way from that extreme theory in tax differential today. We have given more and more relief to earned income. Originally the differential between earned and unearned income was justified on the ground that earned income was less secure and, therefore, a lighter tax burden was justified having regard to the insecurity of the income of the taxpayer, whereas the taxpayer with unearned income had greater security of income and most likely had the advantage of capital resources. Whatever the reasoning behind it in the first place, it has become accepted practice in our approach to taxation affairs to differentiate between earned and unearned income. We began by giving earned and even unearned income reliefs in the case of the elderly in order to put those who had retired on investment income or annuities in some sort of equitable position in relation to those who had retired on pension, to which, as we know, earned income relief applies.
Now the age exemption does more than give the benefit of earned income relief to unearned income. It actually exempts from tax altogether persons whose total income is below a certain limit, whether earned or unearned, but only, of course, in cases where the taxpayer is over 65 949 or one of a married couple is over 65. It seems that these reliefs are now creating certain disparities and one wonders whether a re-examination of relativities at those points is now due.
We should like to draw attention to the recommendation of the Royal Commission on the Taxation of Profits and Income which the Chancellor has not yet brought forward. We feel particularly disappointed that the Chancellor has not felt able to support the recommendation contained in paragraph 201 and others of the second Report—
§ The Deputy-Chairman (Sir Gordon Touche)
Order. The hon. Gentleman realises that the debate is confined to the Clause itself?
§ Mr. Houghton
Yes, Sir Gordon. However, I hoped that it was in order to refer to some of the matters which we hoped the Chancellor would include in Clause 12.
§ Mr. Mitchison
Further to that point of order. For purposes of comparison, cannot we compare what the Chancellor has included and the corpus from which he has drawn that which he has included? Otherwise it becomes most difficult to relate what he has included to anything.
§ The Deputy-Chairman
I am afraid that the debate on the Question, "That the Clause stand part of the Bill," is rather narrow and is confined to that question.
§ Mr. Houghton
May I express it in this way? We regret that the Chancellor has confined his proposals in Clause 12 to the particular reliefs that he has given, when in our view the scope of the reliefs might well have been extended to other claims for the Chancellor's consideration. The Order Paper is positively littered with very good suggestions in that connection.
The whole emphasis of the Clause, apart from the almost automatic extension of the ceiling of income for a dependent relative, has been to extend still further and only the reliefs given to the 950 elderly. While we approve of the steps that the Chancellor is taking in that direction, we are disappointed that he has not felt able to include other reliefs which the Royal Commission discussed in its Report and which we hoped to have seen in the Clause.
In any event, the sum total of the "package" deal on personal reliefs this time is in this one direction, which, however much we may approve, is rather narrow in its approach to the relief of direct taxation at this time. We fully acknowledge that the right hon. Gentleman has made considerable concessions in indirect taxation in an earlier part of the Bill, but the reliefs to the Income Tax payers have to be kept in reasonable relationship to tax reliefs generally.
We can only look forward to a future occasion, if there is one—time may be running short—for the right hon. Gentleman to do all the things he wants to do. We should hope that if the right hon. Gentleman gets an opportunity of introducing another Budget, Clause 12 of that Bill—it is curious how frequently Clause 12 is the personal reliefs Clause in successive Finance Bills—will contain a wider selection of personal reliefs which, perhaps, will make his proposals of wider appeal to taxpayers generally.
§ Dame Irene Ward
I am delighted to know that the hon. Member for Sowerby (Mr. Houghton) would like to hear from me. I think it is true to say that he probably wants to hear more from me than does my own Front Bench. I have no intention of taking up the time of the Committee, except to take this opportunity of saying that I am delighted that my right hon. Friend has at least made progress, though to a small extent, I agree, in trying to do something for those who live on small fixed incomes. [An HON. MEMBER: "He has done the opposite."] I am always ready for more in that direction. I shall start my campaign straight away so that we can prepare for the next Budget. In the meantime, Clause 12, with the extended personal reliefs, has done something, and I am proud that I have been able to do my little bit of battle.
While the hon. Member for Sowerby was speaking, I was thinking that he had not been quite so successful in persuading 951 the Chancellor of the Exchequer of his own party to do something for those living on small fixed incomes as I have been in persuading my Chancellor of the Exchequer to do something for them. In other words, I have had greater success than the hon. Member has had. All I can say is that if we compare what has happened in Clause 12 with what happened in the equivalent Clause when his right hon. Friend introduced the Budget, he did nothing at all. All that he did was to put up the indirect taxation, put up the direct taxation and do nothing at all for those who have suffered most under inflation. [An HON. MEMBER: "Nonsense."] It is no good saying "Nonsense", which is all that hon. Members opposite ever say. I prefer action to words and—
§ Mr. William Ross (Kilmarnock)
Why did the hon. Lady not put that into practice in the last Division?
§ 6.15 p.m.
§ Mr. Mitchison
Is that why the hon. Lady has just voted against a tax concession in favour of people with small incomes? Is it because she prefers action to words?
§ Dame Irene Ward
The hon. and learned Member is very clever and subtle. If, however, we take on balance what the Government which I support have done and the financial position under the Chancellor whom I support and compare it with comparable Clause 12's, the hon. and learned Member must agree—indeed, his hon. Friend the Member for Sowerby has just said so—that in indirect taxation the Chancellor of my Government has given—
§ Dame Irene Ward
I know, Sir Gordon, but the hon. Member for Sowerby said that and you did not stop him.
§ Dame Irene Ward
I have it on the record, Sir Gordon, so I am quite happy 952 about it. Anyone who reads it will know the answer. All I am saying is that I am not prepared to throw over the substantial gains in financial stability which have enabled the Chancellor of the Exchequer whom I support—
§ Dame Irene Ward
I will not go very far from the Clause. After all, these are substantial concessions which are embodied in the Clause and it is necessary to have the money in the Exchequer to pay for them. I do not want to continue the argument further, except to say that I am glad we have started to make progress. I look forward to a good many more Clause 12's with much better treatment of those living on small fixed incomes. Heaven help the whole lot if the party opposite should ever win another General Election.
§ Mr. Diamond
I am sure I speak for the whole Committee when I say how much we have enjoyed the intervention of the hon. Lady the Member for Tyne-mouth (Dame Irene Ward). Everything she has said was clear and to the point, and it was nice to know that she was supporting the Government and the Chancellor of the Exchequer. I imagine it is the Government now in power and the right hon. Gentleman who is sitting on the Front Bench to whom the hon. Lady was referring.
On that point, I differ with the hon. Lady. I do not wish to support the Chancellor or the Government in relation to the Clause. It is John Citizen's Clause. It is the Clause which affects the ordinary, straightforward, average taxpayer of simple means and simple tastes and with no complexities in his economic affairs. We can call him John Citizen or, in this context, we can call him Honest John.
§ Mr. Diamond
In these matters of the Finance Act, and, indeed, all Acts, the male includes the female. Therefore, Honest John would include the femme sole who pays tax also. The point which I was anxious to make is that it is Honest John's tax Clause and Honest John is called upon to pay his tax, subject to these allowances, in full.
953 Honest John, as my hon. Friend the Member for Sowerby (Mr. Houghton) mentioned, has no opportunity for so arranging his affairs as to relieve the burden of taxation which falls upon his shoulders. He has no opportunity, nor does he have any element of credit or time, as my hon. Friend pointed out. My hon. Friend, with his usual moderation, understated the position and said that under Schedule D most businesses paid their tax eight months after the start of the Income Tax year. That would be much earlier than is the fact. The fact is that most businesses receive requests to pay their tax some eight months after the start of the Income Tax year. They proceed to pay their tax about eleven months, on average, after the start of the Income Tax year, and they are charged no interest for doing that. But in this Clause John Citizen, who is given the benefit of these allowances, has neither latitude in time nor in manœuvrability to so adjust his affairs as to pay other than the fullest possible amount of tax, less any allowances that are given, in this straightforward way.
This is extremely relevant to the Clause, because it is taken into account in the general trend of taxation that any concession which goes beyond a statutory provision is shared equally among all classes of taxpayer. If the concession is shared equally, it matters not that it is being taken. If everybody pays under the concession slightly less tax than he would normally be called upon to pay, that is fair between one citizen and another. But our tax system is so devised that the man who earns a weekly wage pays proportionately more Income Tax than any other category of the community, except possibly the civil servant who receives a weekly or monthly wage and probably also the Cabinet Minister.
None of the reliefs to which I have referred, and none of the opportunities to adjust his affairs so as to reduce the burden of taxation, are open to him. It follows, therefore, that he should be given special, sensitive and considerate treatment in any allowances that are provided in Clause 12. The reliefs are given in the Clause and there is some improvement in them, but they are of small account. Every time that, in the course of the debate, an attempt has been made to persuade the Government to widen 954 their vision a little and to be even a little more generous in their approach, it has been turned down for a variety of reasons. No consideration has been given to the fact that here we are largely dealing with the worst hit taxpayer in the sense that 100 per cent. of the appropriate tax burden falls on his or her shoulders whereas in very few other cases in the community does that apply.
§ Mr. Geoffrey Stevens (Portsmouth, Langstone)
I have been trying to follow the hon. Member's argument. He has referred at some length to Honest John Citizen and also to weekly wage earners. I have been glancing at the Clause, and in doing that I hope, Sir Gordon, that I was in order. Nowhere in it do I find any reference to wage earners. The only references are to John Citizens and Mary Citizenesses who are 65 years of age or more. I should be glad if the hon. Member would relate his observations to them.
§ Mr. Diamond
I am grateful, Sir Gordon, that you have been courteous enough to follow my argument with a good deal more understanding than the hon. Member for Langstone (Mr. Stevens) and that you perceived immediately the direct and absolute relevance of my argument to the Clause.
§ Mr. Diamond
I do not want to trespass on your generosity, Sir Gordon, or the generosity of the Committee by repeating my arguments for the benefit of the hon. Member for Langstone.
Therefore, the first aspect of the criticism which I, and I hope all my hon. Friends, make against the Government is that in giving the allowances in the Clause no account has been taken of the fact that the full burden of tax falls upon the shoulders of those affected by the allowances. I have called them John Citizens. To make the point even more clear, since later in our discussion of the Bill we shall be referring to dividend stripping, I have also called them Honest Johns.
Secondly, the Clause illustrates the Government's approach to the little man, or to the little woman, if the hon. Lady the Member for Tynemouth would wish me to add that.
§ Mr. Diamond
The reliefs given in the Clause are to be contrasted with the reliefs given in the Clauses which deal with Income Tax and Profits Tax where, according to the Financial Statement, allowances amounting to £23 million in a full year are given. The Clause is to be contrasted with the Profits Tax Clause which gives a relief of £16 million in a full year. Sums of £23 million and £16 million, respectively, are given largely to business in initial allowances and Profits Tax reliefs.
The Government illustrate their point of view towards the little man who is affected by Clause 12. It is he who receives the reliefs given in that Clause, and the total amount given by the Budget in these reliefs is £4¾ million in a full year, against £39 million given to business. This illustrates absolutely the comparable importance which the Government attach to the little man, who pays his full whack of tax at his full rate and who never succeeds in reducing his burden without making an awful hash of it. No doubt he is unable to afford the fees of consultants to advise him how it should be done properly. He has to do it himself, with the result, for example, of what occurred when a labourer claimed a child allowance, and he was shown by the dates in respect of which he had made the claim to have fathered the child at the age of 12, thereby casting some doubt on its eligibility for the child allowance.
I repeat what I have been compelled to say on other occasions—that all claims put forward for increases in allowances have been met with complete courtesy, and nothing else whatsoever. Apparently, the Chancellor and the Financial Secretary are now developing a technique of being kind to the Committee. I am sure that the Paymaster-General will not feel hurt if I do not include him in that category. He is a very polite man, but he does not come anywhere near the standard of his right hon. Friend and the Financial Secretary in the matter of giving nothing but courtesy when we ask for help. Again on this occasion we have had courteous replies and nothing else.
§ Mr. Simon
The hon. Member for Gloucester (Mr. Diamond) was less than fair to the Government when he implied that my right hon. Friend the Chancellor 956 and myself—kindly excusing the Paymaster-General—had refused any concession during discussions on the Bill. On the contrary, anybody viewing fairly the review of indirect taxation which has taken place would feel, particularly in the context of this year's discussion, that was hardly a very fair observation. It is perfectly true that, for reasons which I gave when we discussed Amendments to this Clause, we had not found it possible to accede to the arguments urged; but, looking at the field of taxation so far as we have discussed it generally, it would be less than fair to accuse my right hon. Friend of inflexibility or of inability to appreciate the arguments put forward in the Committee.
§ 6.30 p.m.
§ Mr. Simon
The second thing which it occurred to me to say in listening to the speech of the hon. Member for Gloucester was that one often comes across the attitude of taxpayers who say, "There is nothing for me in this year's Budget. Why is so-and-so getting something when my claims are at least as good?" Sometimes we tend to forget the fact that a concession once given goes on until it is revoked by a subsequent Finance Bill. If there is an improvement in personal allowances—and there have been three improvements in them since 1951—that continues from year to year, and each time the taxpayer pays his tax he has the benefit of it.
It is against this background, and because every claimant on the Exchequer cannot be dealt with in every Finance Bill, that successive Chancellors of the Exchequer have to decide whose turn it is this time. They have to decide who it is who must now be enabled to take the next step forward. So we must view this against the background that the concessions previously made are still enjoyed, and indeed under this very Finance Bill, because of the Clauses reimposing the general rates of taxation.
Therefore, when the hon. Gentleman quotes the tax remissions that have been made in initial allowances and in the Profits Tax, and contrasts unfavourably with this the smaller figure of direct taxation remitted under this Clause in a full year, again I say that this figure must be viewed in relation to the previous substantial remissions of taxation which have 957 been given in earlier Finance Bills and which are continuing to be enjoyed under this one. In so far as direct taxation relates to this year's Finance Bill, my right hon. Friend has concentrated such reliefs as he felt it possible to make on the people concerned in this Clause, namely, the aged with the age relief and the age exemption, the dependent relatives and so on.
I then come to the remarks of the hon. Member for Sowerby (Mr. Houghton), who, if I may say so with respect, gave us his usual interesting general review of the Income Tax exemptions against the background of the general fiscal system. It is not necessary for me, nor would it be strictly in order, to follow him in his argument, but I think the hon. Gentleman was right in saying that this Clause is the one which usually concerns the largest number of taxpayers. Apart from the purchase Tax provisions of this Finance Bill I should be surprised if that is not equally true of this year. As regards age exemption Clause 12 exempts for the first time 200,000 of the poorest taxpayers and, in addition, it gives marginal relief to another 200,000 taxpayers who are the next poorest. Those are the ones who the House agreed should be the recipients of such relief as was possible this year, namely, the aged.
We need not go into the difficulties which we all know have been experienced in recent years by that class of the community. It is not only that 400,000, because under the age relief another 50,000 obtained the full relief and others—I cannot give the exact figure—received a marginal relief. So nearly half a million taxpayers, of whom 400,000 are amongst the poorest who have previously paid tax and all of whom are aged, are those who qualify for relief and who are helped by this Clause.
It is against this background that I commend the Clause to the Committee. It has been generally welcomed not only in this Committee but throughout the country. In spite of the fact that the hon. Gentleman the Member for Sowerby recommended my right hon. Friend to look at the other recommendations of the Royal Commission, actually telling him which paragraph to study, and remarking that he was disappointed that those were not included and that the Notice Paper was positively littered with good sugges- 958 tions, all I can say within the rules of order—I am not sure even then that it is within them—is that there is a great deal to be said against some of those other recommendations for exemption put forward by the Royal Commission, but I can assure the hon. Gentleman that my right hon. Friend has read the Notice Paper with great care.
I think the Committee will agree generally that if there is only a comparatively small sum which can be remitted this year in the way of direct taxation my right hon. Friend has concentrated on those whom the Committee would most wish to see helped.
§ Mr. Mitchison
I am afraid that on this side of the Committee we shall find that reply unsatisfactory, although we do not propose to divide against a Clause containing concessions. Indeed our general complaint about them is that they are insufficient. I cannot go into the Amendments that have been turned down by the Government this afternoon, but those who read HANSARD will see for themselves what has been denied and to whom.
I cannot assess the value of the pages of the Order Paper which in relation to the Finance Bill, if I may be topical for a moment, somewhat remind me of the break-up value of a disused cemetery. Surrounded as I am by a collection of learned economists, contemplating a Government which proclaim so readily their capacity to govern in all fields, which some people from time to time believe, I have been looking at the function of the type of relief provided by this Clause.
In the light of what this Clause ought to do, I cannot believe that this concession, or indeed many similar concessions in the past, is sufficient. After all, for the average individual citizen the personal reliefs, and nothing but the personal reliefs, make Income Tax a progressive form of taxation. The House has frequently been occupied lately with considering the difference between rates of taxes and between remembering that rates are not a progressive but a regressive tax on the whole, whereas by virtue of what we are considering now, the concessions made in Clause 12, it is claimed that Income Tax is progressive.
Looking at these concessions, can we really feel that the objections which the Royal Commission took to the fairness 959 of income taxation as between some classes of the community and others are met by the type of concession that we find here? The first point in the Royal Commission's majority Report was the very steep rise at the beginning of the taxable group of people. It was very sharp indeed in the lower limits of taxable people. That tends to mean that the concessions in the way of personal relief—using the term in its broadest sense, referring not merely to the two particular personal reliefs—have on the whole been insufficient.
Looking at the minority Report, we find rather definite points which I should like for the moment to recall to the attention of hon. Members. In paragraph 8 it is pointed out that the starting point of liability is at a much lower level of real income than before the war. Therefore, one would expect a corresponding increase in personal reliefs near that level. Then it is pointed out that the rise in taxation has been proportionately much greater in the lower categories of Income Tax payers, the £300-£1,000 range—broadly the people we are considering today—than in the case of those higher up the income scale. This was, of course, a Report which appeared in 1954 before the somewhat considerable concessions to Surtax payers made in a recent Budget, and what was true then is no doubt true now.
§ Mr. Mitchison
Yes, there has been something both ways, but I invite the Government to say that the conclusions drawn from the tables in that Report are now incorrect. They are broad conclusions and they seem to me to be correct now as they were then, though no doubt there may be differences of degree. It is in the light of conclusions of this sort—I will add a third in a moment—that I feel that Clause 12 contains concessions of a somewhat niggardly character.
The third point was that the rise in the tax burden has been much greater on the family man than on married persons without children and much greater on married persons than on single 960 persons. I am willing to be corrected by those who have all these matters at their fingertips if any of these general conclusions which were correct then are incorrect now, but I believe I am right when I say that the broad picture presented by the minority Report is still true and that it is still the case that the first call on a Chancellor of the Exchequer concerned with maintaining the progressive character of income taxation and concerned with doing broad justice—
§ The Temporary Chairman (Sir Norman Hulbert)
I would remind the hon. and learned Gentleman that the Clause deals with three specific reliefs, and I think he is getting rather wide of it.
§ Mr. Mitchison
I had not explained what I thought the Chancellor's first duty was, Sir Norman, but, if I may continue, the first duty will be relevant to the Clause.
The first duty in the circumstances that I stated seems to me to deal with personal reliefs—that is what the Clause is about—and if that is the Chancellor's first duty, I would regard the personal reliefs in the Clause as insufficient in number and quantity. I cannot give details because the attempts which have been made by the Opposition to correct both those insufficiencies have been refused by the Government. Consequently, we take what we can on behalf of the taxpayer, but we look a little critically at the number of items on the plate and the size of each item, and we feel that in present times this taxpayer has not come out as well as have many other types of taxpayer, including the corporate one and the man whose very large income makes these personal reliefs less important to him.
§ Question put and agreed to.
§ Clause ordered to stand part of the Bill.