Local MP Andrew Jones has responded to the chancellor’s autumn statement.
Mr Jones said: “The chancellor has published a balanced package to support our economy out of recession and into growth. And, as he said, the emphasis on growth and productivity by his predecessor was not wrong.
“That is why I am pleased that the measures I supported at that time – the stamp duty changes and the cancellation of the National Insurance rises – were kept by the chancellor in his statement today. I am pleased too that he confirmed that the unfunded tax cuts were scrapped in favour of a sensible, pragmatic approach based on independent estimates from the Office of Budget Responsibility.
“The broadest shoulders are paying the most and I realise that will not be immediately welcomed by many of those who are paying a bit more. But a civilised society cannot balance the books on the back of the weakest.
“That is why I welcome increased investment in the NHS. The NHS has never had a funding cut from this Conservative Government and by the end of this Parliament funding will be up over 40 per cent compared to the situation in 2010. I was also particularly pleased to see the budget increase for social care. This will help the NHS as it will free up beds for those who need care from those who are ready to leave hospital.
“I welcome too the uprating of pensions and benefits in line with inflation. I campaigned for both these measures as soon as some began to question the government’s commitment to them.
“So overall some difficult decisions but right ones. The Government is supporting the least well-off, funding the NHS and schools and extending the windfall taxes on energy companies. Coupled with an emphasis on growth this is the right approach.”