The resignation of Owen Paterson means that there will have to be a by-election in North Shropshire, with Westminster now bogged down in yet another scandal.
As you now consider who to vote for in the upcoming by-election, I am proud to introduce Reform UK, setting out here what we stand for. How we recover from Covid is vital to the success of the UK. We must reform the way our country is run and managed so it works properly for the people. In many areas, just the application of basic common sense would be a good start.
The nation faces many challenges and this is an opportunity for you to send a clear message to the Government that you are not happy with the direction they are taking. To succeed, we need lower taxes, zero waiting lists and cheaper energy. We also need our public servants to have the integrity and moral standards worthy of the high offices they hold.
Let’s reclaim our right to free speech, let’s stop the woke nonsense and let’s make great things happen! Let’s celebrate our pride in being British: our amazing culture, our unbreakable communities, our incredible heritage and our wonderful values.
Leaving the undemocratic EU was just the beginning. People’s eyes have been opened as to the benefits of being an independent sovereign UK. Reform is now possible and essential in these key areas:
- Reform our Economy: to succeed, we must become a low tax, smartly regulated, high growth economy. Faster growth is the only way to better wages and more tax revenues to invest in better healthcare and other public services. Our bold economic vision frees up over 6 million people from paying Income Tax and frees up over 1.2 million small businesses/self-employed from paying Corporation Tax. We would also remove a raft of other stifling taxes. This will generate much faster growth.
- Reform our Public Sector: we must be ambitious, seeking faster, more efficient public services that work better for us all, with better results. For example, with health, we should demand zero waiting lists and we have a bold plan to achieve this vision. Our police need to focus on preventing crime and catching criminals, not woke nonsense.
- Reform our Energy & Environment: We all care about the environment and want cleaner air, and we can do this in a strategic, affordable way. Yet the Government’s net zero plan is net stupid; it will add huge extra costs to us all and will send hundreds of thousands of British jobs to China and elsewhere. Our plan will save and create British jobs, as well as save consumers considerable amounts of money. We would also nationalise 50% of all utility companies to stop consumers being ripped off.
- Reform our Institutions: major change is needed to the bodies that impact our lives — the unelected cronyism of the House of Lords, the unaccountable civil service and the bloated BBC. Reform is essential to our voting system so it is fairer and more representative; the two-party system embeds the status quo and prevents real change.
Freedom is Precious
Our freedom is so precious, yet we have taken it for granted. Our freedom is so valuable, yet so vulnerable. The restrictions on our freedoms by the Government during the Covid pandemic amount to a major erosion of our rights and civil liberties. Governments are very good at imposing temporary measures, but very bad at getting rid of them — income tax was a temporary tax on the rich to pay for a war over 200 years ago!
We will campaign relentlessly to:
- Return all of the freedoms and liberties that we enjoyed before Covid. Every single one of them. We are the only party making this commitment.
- Free us from the woke nonsense that pervades through Westminster and far too much of our lives.
- Restore true freedom of speech.
Reform Our Economy
The Government has increased taxes to the highest level in 70 years with more taxes to come. Medium-term growth is expected to be the lowest for 60 years. This means lower wages and less money to invest in health and other public services.
The combined works of Harry Potter is fun but dwarfed by our tax code of some 20,000 pages, the most complex in the world. This stifles growth and creates an industry of unproductive tax avoidance.
Smart money and smart people will not invest in the UK nor come to the UK in a mobile world if they think we are uncompetitive in tax terms.
Reform UK is the only party that stands for cutting taxes and simplifying taxes to create higher growth, better wages and better healthcare.
LOW TAX, SIMPLE TAX
CREATES FASTER GROWTH — 1.25% P.A.
Stimulus Plan — £48bn p.a.:
Free up 6 million people from Income Tax by lifting the minimum threshold to £20,000 from £12,500 p.a. This will benefit 1 in 5 taxpayers. Basic Income Tax rate stays at 20%.
- The less well-off benefit proportionately most, saving £1,500 p.a. @£20,000 salary, circa £30 per week.
- Lift higher rate tax threshold to £70,000 from £50,000 currently; flat 40% tax rate above £70,000.
- Lift Capital Gains Tax threshold to £20,000 from £12,300, with single 20% flat rate above.
- Free up 1.2 million SMEs from paying Corporation Tax (over 80% of companies) by lifting the minimum threshold to £100,000. Raise rate thereafter from 19% to 20%.
- Cut Employer’s NI from 13.8% to 10% under £70,000.
Simplification plan highlights:
- Reduce & simplify residential Stamp Duty: 0% below £750k, 2% on £750k–£1.5m, & 4% above, will stimulate economic activity and construction.
- Abolish VAT on domestic fuel.
- Abolish Stamp Duty on share trading, will enable the City to compete globally.
- Abolish Air Passenger Duty to help the devastated travel sector.
- Abolish the burdensome Apprenticeship Levy, which ironically reduced apprentice numbers.
- Abolish business rates for small & medium firms, offset with Online Delivery Tax at 3%, will create a fairer playing field for High Street and physical versus online businesses.
- Abolish Inheritance Tax for all estates under £2m (98% of all estates). 20% tax above £2m — executors can choose to give this to registered charities or HMRC.
- Provide 100% Capital allowances on corporate investment in year 1.
- We aim to reform the over-complicated tax system on savings and pensions, that currently benefits those with the most to save. Our plan will introduce tax relief on pension withdrawal.
Reform Our Public Sector
Our public services are paid for and valued by us all. The faster our economy grows by having lower, simpler taxes, the more money there is to invest in public services. With reform, they can work better, faster, and more efficiently. There is far too much waste and not enough ambition.
The vast and growing mountain of daft, unproductive regulations that hinder small businesses and restrict growth are all part of the same problem — lacking in common sense. They go hand in hand with the wasteful spending.
We will start with:
Reforming our Health System
Reforming our Education System
Reforming the Way We Police
Reform Our Public Services: Health
The NHS is possibly the most loved healthcare system in the world. Being free at the point of delivery is at its core and must always continue.
The frontline care is amazing, dedicated, and always appreciated. But we have to be honest that in the back office, it is neither the most efficient nor the best managed system in the world.
Let’s be ambitious: we should aim for zero waiting lists. This is achievable with reform. Many other countries don’t have waiting lists, why should we put up with them? We have been brainwashed that they are the norm; they should not be, and we can achieve zero waiting lists.
We must put the patient in charge by having a voucher scheme so they can be seen and treated promptly. Healthcare will always, of course, remain free at the point of delivery.
If you cannot be seen by a GP in 3 days, you get a voucher to go private elsewhere.
If you cannot be seen by a consultant in 3 weeks, you get a voucher to go private elsewhere.
If you cannot have an operation in 9 weeks from Day 1, you get a voucher to go private elsewhere.
This should mean zero waiting lists in around 18 months as private capacity increases rapidly. Retired medics will come back to work part-time in less bureaucratic healthcare settings.
Overall efficiency will improve dramatically.
Surveys show that patients don’t mind who treats their condition, they just want to be treated quickly! For more information look at our detailed Health plan here.
Reform Our Public Services: Education
On Education, let’s invest more wisely in young people: university students are being ripped off with high fees often for just online learning. Many degree courses could be done in 2 years not 3 years, which would save students many thousands of pounds.
- We would scrap interest rates on student loans and extend the capital repayment period, which will improve the debt recovery rate.
- We would introduce a new workable apprenticeship scheme. We have to be honest that many young people would be better learning whilst in work rather than accruing debt at university.
- Our schools and pupils need better technology to give them the best chances as we help prepare them for life. Covid has changed so much. Our children learn best in school and never again must we shut them, forcing children to learn from home for weeks on end.
- Schools must focus on the basics of teaching every child to read and write.
- Teachers must be free to teach pupils how to think, not what to think, without fear of the woke police or religious persecution.
Reform Our Public Services: Policing
We must adopt a zero tolerance approach to crime and antisocial behaviour. This starts at the ground level. Common sense dictates more police on the streets will help prevent crime and help catch criminals.
Increase police numbers in the community, with officers on the beat, engaging with the local community. Ensure there is more visible policing with a focus on combating violent crime, robbery and burglary rather than enforcing restrictions on free speech and harassing people sitting on a park bench.
Target the menace of County Lines drug dealers, gangs and the growth of knife crime.
Our police need much better technology to help them when they are on the streets. Some of what they currently use is archaic. This can substantially reduce bureaucracy and paperwork.
Reform Our Institutions
- Reform the BBC: Bloated, wasteful and obligatory. The licence fee needs abolishing. People should be free to choose.
- Reform the unelected, crony-filled House of Lords: The Prime Minister enriching his brother, mates and personal donors by making them peers is indefensible. A properly representative second House is needed.
- Reform the Civil Service: Better leadership, more accountability, and greater welcome of successful people from the private sector to come in and serve the nation.
- Reform our border controls and immigration: We need proper border security at airports and ports so we know who is entering and leaving the UK. Illegal immigration is unacceptable and should not be granted asylum in the UK. We welcome controlled immigration of talent and skills to meet our economic needs. This must not be an excuse however for cheaper labour and not training our own young people.
- Reform the voting system: To make it more representative. Smaller parties mean more choice, new ideas, and better debate.
- Reform the postal voting system: We must combat fraud and abuse to ensure trust in our democracy. We have seen real problems first-hand in recent elections and this problem is far bigger than many realise.
- Reform our military covenant: Let’s properly protect our troops and veterans from unwarranted, never-ending legal claims. Let’s invest in properly equipping and housing our armed forces. Let’s invest in training our brave people for new jobs when they leave the services.
Reform Wasteful Government Spending
Every day we see examples of wasteful, bad or unnecessary spending of our money by councils, public services or the Government. Across the country over the whole year, this adds up to real money.
- Tens of billions of pounds of our money is wasted every year.
- Reform UK knows that with better leadership, better buying, better decisions, this waste of our money can be cut right back, without affecting front line services.
- This needs a reform of the civil service — with more accountability — for quality performance. It needs more successful private sector people coming into the civil service to use their skills to help get better value for the Government. Let’s make it part of our moral duty to society — to give something back.
- It is time we tackle the growing mountain of daft, unproductive regulations that hinder small businesses and restrict growth. They are all part of the same problem — they lack common sense. They go hand-in-hand with the wasteful spending which also restricts our growth rate.
- One of the worst areas of wasteful government spending is ineffective foreign aid. Our civil servants struggle to give away the billions of pounds each year, so they end up giving money to the EU and other global bodies to help spend it. We would reduce the foreign aid budget by 50%, down to a still generous 0.35% of GDP.
Reform Border Control & Immigration
A responsible government has a duty to protect our borders. We must know who is coming in and who is going out of the country, at our airports and ports.
Let’s welcome those who have high level skills and talents that we need — such as doctors, engineers, software developers, scientists and surgeons — in tightly controlled numbers that meet our requirements. We want these valuable people to come and work in the UK legally, and play by the rules, respecting our values.
This must not be an excuse, however, for cheaper labour that reduces wages in the UK, nor must it be an excuse for not training our wonderful young people.
Illegal immigration is unacceptable and must not be granted asylum in the UK. The vile people smugglers running the dangerous, illegal routes, such as across the English Channel, must be stopped. People smugglers should be given very long prison sentences.
Everyone must know that no one coming via these illegal routes will be allowed to stay in the UK. Cases must be determined in just a few weeks and people returned to where they came from. The cost to the taxpayer is already billions every year and the impact on local communities around the country is very significant. However most people who are concerned are afraid to speak out on this issue in what is effectively a restraint on free speech.
We must have a zero tolerance attitude to illegal immigration.
Reform Our Energy Policies
We are all concerned about the environment and we all want cleaner air. Let’s celebrate our success so far, as the UK has led the way by reducing our emissions since 1990 by over 40%.
Technological improvements will enable us to reduce emissions further and capture emissions. However, we must be smart about which technologies to use. The Reform UK triple save plan will:
- save emissions
- save and create British jobs
- save households money
We must maintain a range of types of energy supply, so we are not overexposed to any one particular supply; prices, technology, and relative performance will vary over time. We will boost the solar and wind renewable sector using a new government-owned Renewable Bank; the panels and turbines must be made here in the UK to save and create British jobs. This will also mean dramatically lower utility costs.
The Conservatives over the last decade have been negligent and turned the UK from being a net exporter of energy into a large net importer of energy. They have foolishly left us strategically exposed to overseas state actors. We must use our own shale gas under our feet which can be safely and cheaply extracted. Importing gas when we have plenty of our own gas is foolish.
We must develop the latest nuclear small modular reactors where the UK has world-leading technology.
Reform UK will nationalise 50% of our utilities to reduce consumer costs and stop overseas ownership of our critical national infrastructure. The other 50% will be owned by UK pension funds. This will enable a win-win situation, with consumers benefiting from lower energy prices, the taxpayer benefitting during good years and all benefiting from 50% private sector expertise brought by pension funds.
The Government’s current plans will destroy British jobs — sending them overseas, especially to China — and lead to huge increases in domestic bills every year to pay to overseas-owned energy firms. This is both unacceptable and unnecessary.
Reform's Solution to the Cladding Scandal
This is one of the great injustices of our time. Multiple failures occurred, caused by inadequate government regulations, ignored warnings, incompetent inspections and extremely bad practices in the housebuilding industry. A worthless warranty scheme that is not worth the paper it’s written on. Everyone except the leaseholder property owner is to blame, but under the Government proposals, it is the leaseholder who suffers the most and pays the greatest price.
Reform UK is the only party with a clear solution, which is in 3 parts:
- a long-term funding and warranty solution
- a guarantee that leaseholders don’t pay for cladding and fire safety related items
- the polluter pays i.e. the industry
The Government plans will push many thousands of people into bankruptcy and devastate the value of hundreds of thousands of flats. Reform UK’s plans would rectify this injustice.
Our full plan can be downloaded on our website at reformparty.uk/cladding
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