At 1pm on Tuesday the Treasury launched a number of consultations packaged online at www.gov.uk/government/collections/tax-policies-and-consultations-spring-2021. One of particular interest relates to business rates. My preference is to scrap business rates in place of a transaction tax. A property-based tax discriminates town centres and is incapable of reflecting the peaks and troughs of a business. A transaction tax would apply irrespective of whether your business is in town, out of town or online (at home or abroad). Business rates apply to most medium-size and large businesses so the price we pay for items in our shops reflects this. I’d prefer a small transaction tax which is likely to raise more for the Government and will help to address the loopholes that online companies benefit from. There are other consultations including tackling tax avoidance and evasion which I know will interest many.
The G7 Summit must be more than a flying visit by world leaders - most agree on this. Most also agree that the legacy must be a positive outcome for Cornwall so it is critical that any work required to create a safe, functional and welcoming environment for these leaders does not have a lasting negative impact on the natural environment. This is why Cllr Linda Taylor (Lelant and Carbis Bay) and I have made it very clear that any development for the Summit in Carbis Bay must be temporary and the area returned to its former state including nature recovery. We are both adamant that the planning process must be adhered to. The opportunity for Cornwall to play its part in the global response to the pandemic and the stated ‘Green Resilient Recovery’ is significant and this should not be overshadowed by an avoidable planning dispute.
There is no denying that the UK plays an important part in defending the world's most vulnerable people which is why Parliament wrestled with the unlikely bedfellows trade and genocide on Monday night. Trade has the potential to improve the behaviour of offending states. Withholding trade can compound the suffering of those on the receiving end of the most appalling behaviour. Unfortunately, in an attempt to address the concerns of Parliamentarians, the Government came up with a pretty clumsy arrangement which came close to being defeated. I voted in favour of what I believe was a reasonable alternative to the Government’s solution. The positives out of this is that the likelihood of drawing up a new trade deal where crimes against humanity are being committed is small and the ‘fall-out’ has emphasised to Government how seriously many MPs, including myself, take our role in calling out genocide when it occurs.
After nearly three years my apprentice is completing what has been a successful experience and is taking on new responsibilities in my office. This creates an opportunity for a new apprenticeship in business administration and anyone interested in this training opportunity can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. My primary ask is that you have a concern and desire to help local residents and can work in a busy and sometimes demanding office environment. You can also email me if you want to take part in the Woodland Recovery 2020 Initiative to help plant 10,000 trees. If you would like to volunteer to plant trees in a covid-safe way I look forward to hearing from you.