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Tax increase could ‘devastate’ employers says small businesses
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Boris Johnson is facing a furious backlash from small businesses, warning that an increase could severely impact their recovery from COVID restrictions. The backlash comes as the Prime Minister is believed to be considering hiking National Insurance rates to fund social care. Members of the Prime Minister’s own party are also said to be on the warpath over the alleged proposal.
BBC Breakfast business presenter Nina Warhurst said: “It’s one of those issues where everybody thinks, oh yeah, more money for social care – that’s a great idea.
“It’s human nature to think, well, what’s it going to cost me?
“This rumored increase will impact employers as well as their employees. It all centers around contributions we make to national insurance.
“If you’re an employee, this is a tax on your earnings. If you’re self-employed, it is a tax on your profits.”
She went on: “Now all of that money goes into one big central fund and from that, you can access benefits. now they include things like the state pension, statutory sick, pay maternity leave, and your entitlement to unemployment benefits.
“Employers currently pay 13.8 percent of their profits as the main national insurance rates so an increase in tax means less to spend on investment and jobs.
“Small businesses have told us that increase could devastate them at a time when many are still recovering from the impact of the pandemic.”
Suren Thiru from the British Chamber of Commerce said: “Raising national insurance tax-essentially tax and jobs would have the potential to limit the recovery in jobs or sort of wider recovery.
“Because it makes the cost of employing someone that much more expensive at a time that is dissipating loads of other costs at the same time.
“We want the Government to look at ways of boosting the wider recovery because that will help live the tax revenue needed to help support public services but also the wider economy.”
Mr Johnson’s increase in National Insurance rates would pay for a major overhaul in social care.
Health Secretary Sajid Javid is pushing for this 2 percent increase in National Insurance contributions due to rising concerns over the state of social care in the UK.
However, small businesses have warned of this “devastating” increase, which would impact severely on their recovery from the pandemic.
Reports suggested that £5.5 billion more funding has been agreed for NHS shortfalls later this year, including to help clear the backlog caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
But Downing Street sources said details of the social care plans were still being worked out on Sunday night and that a day for the announcement was yet to be confirmed.
The Sunday Times reported that lifetime contributions on care will be capped at about £80,000 and National Insurance will be increased by 1.25% to raise between £10 billion and £11 billion per year.
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