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The principles of tax policy

Last November the House of Commons Treasury Committee announced an Inquiry into “The Principles of tax policy”. There were 46 responses, of which seven were from bodies that exist to promote LVT: the Coalition for Economic Justice, ALTER, the School of Economic Science, the Labour Land Campaign, the Henry George Foundation, Transforming Communities and this Campaign. In addition, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and Shelter came out in favour of some kind of reformed property tax. One of the independent submissions, by Michael Leroyd, also put the LVT case, and the Systemic Fiscal Reform Group argued for collecting land value as public revenue through the use of land value covenants. Thus, about one-quarter were in favour of the principle of using land rent for public revenue. Depressingly, the anti-poverty and Christian social justice campaigners did not put the LVT case.

Seven witnesses were called to give oral evidence: Richard Blundell, Institute for Fiscal Studies, and University College
London, Professor Stephen Bond, Oxford University, and Paul Johnson,
Institute for Fiscal Studies, and Frontier Economics; Francesca
Lagerberg, Partner, Grant Thornton, John Preston, Partner,
Pricewaterhouse Coopers, Andrew Hubbard, Immediate past President,
Chartered Institute of Taxation, and John Dickie, Director of Strategy
and Policy, London First. None of these are LVT advocates. Clearly, there is no serious interest in LVT within the Treasury Committee. One must indeed wonder whether there is any serious interest in the principles of tax policy and why this Inquiry was held at all.

The comments from each of the contributors can be read here.

Bryan Harris
David Martin
British Air Transport Association (BATA)
Coalition for Economic Justice (CEJ)
UK Sustainable Biodiesel Alliance
Scotch Whisky Association
Forum of Private Business
Imperial Tobacco Group plc
Land Value Taxation Campaign
Joseph Rowntree Foundation
School of Economic Science
London First
Labour Land Campaign
Investment Management Association
Publish What You Pay Coalition
David Chester
Christian Aid
Low Incomes Tax Reform Group
Transforming Communities
The Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT)
Michael Learoyd
The Henry George Foundation of Great Britain
Law Society of England and Wales
Systemic Fiscal Reform Group
Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and
Wales (ICAEW)

Unquoted Companies Group
HM Treasury
Retailers Against VAT Abuse Schemes (RAVAS)
Child Poverty Action Group
Catherine Fromant
British Bankers’ Association
Christopher J Wales
City of London Corporation
Richard Brooks