The Economy and Growth
- Began to deal with Britain's record deficit, starting this year. The Chancellor completed an in-year spending review to save £6 billion within days of taking office (Treasury Press Conference, 24 May 2010).
- A credible plan to eliminate the structural deficit. In the Budget in June and the Spending Review in October, the Chancellor set out our plans to eliminate the current structural deficit by 2014-15.
- The most damaging aspects of the jobs tax reversed. George Osborne announced an end to the most damaging aspect of Labour's jobs tax just two weeks after entering Government (Treasury Press Conference, 24 May 2010).
- Corporation tax cut. We have set out plans to cut corporation tax from 28 per cent to 24 percent. This cut will give Britain the lowest rate of corporation tax in the G7 and moves towards the creation of the most competitive corporate tax system in the G20 (June Budget, 22 June 2010).
- Investment for apprenticeships. £250 million extra spending for adult apprenticeships, providing up to an additional 75,000 apprenticeship places every year by the end of the Spending Review (Spending Review, 20 October 2010).
- Investment in Transport. Over £10 billion of funding has been given for national and local road networks and public transport schemes in Britain's major cities, including major upgrades to relieve congestion on the M1, M60, M25 and many others. There will also be £14 billion of funding for Network Rail to support maintenance and investment, including major improvements on the East coast mainline (Comprehensive Spending Review, 20 October 2010).
- Funding for Crossrail. The Spending Review included funding to enable Crossrail to go ahead providing an additional 10 per cent capacity to London's rail network (HM Treasury, Spending Review, October 2010).
- Thameslink given the go ahead. The Thameslink project will go ahead in its entirety along with 650 further carriages to reduce overcrowding. In total this amounts to 2,100 new carriages which will help make our railways fit for the 21st century (DIT, Press Release, 25 November 2010).
- £2 billion help for viable small businesses. £2 billion has been made available to viable small companies in the Enterprise Finance Guarantee (June Budget, 22 June 2010).
- £1.4bn Regional Growth Fund created. This will support areas of the country particularly dependent on the public sector to develop successful private enterprise and a sustainable local economy (Spending Review, 20 October 2010).
- Action on tax avoidance. We announced a number of changes to legislation to tackle tax avoidance. Together, these announcements will protect forecast revenues estimated at up to £5billion over the next 4 years, and are expected to raise over £2billion in additional revenue during the course of this parliament (HM Treasury, Press Release, 6 December 2010).
- Office for Tax Simplification created. A new Office of Tax Simplification has been established to help simplify the tax system (Treasury Press Release, 20 July 2010).
- Increased NHS funding. The Spending Review announced a £10.6 billion increase in NHS spending over the Parliament, rising from £103.8 billion in 2010-11 to £114.4 billion in 2014-15 (HM Treasury, Spending Review, October 2010).
- Cancer Drugs Fund created. £200 million a year has been guaranteed to help cancer patients get greater access to cancer drugs that their doctors recommend (Department of Health, Press Release, 27 October 2010).
- Thousands of extra health visitors created. 4,200 new health visitor positions are being created with a new improved training programme to benefit thousands of families (Department of Health Press Release, 21 October 2010).
- The conversion of any school into an academy or a new free school legislated for. The Academies Act gives the Secretary of State the power to grant academy status to any school, alongside the freedoms and flexibilities that allow schools to drive up standards (DfE Press Release, 26 May 2010; Michael Gove, Speech to the Conservative Party Conference, 5 October 2010).
- Raising education standards. We set out plans to improve education standards by refocusing on basics, empowering teachers to maintain discipline in the classroom, recruiting the best teachers and cutting bureaucracy (Education White Paper, 24 November 2010).
Welfare Reform and Making Work Pay
- Housing Benefit capped. The introduction of a maximum limit on housing benefit was announced. It will be capped at £250 a week for a one-bedroom property to £400 a week for a four-bedroom or larger (June Budget, 22 June 2010).
- Benefit Cap announced. George Osborne announced a cap on benefits so that no family on out of work benefits will get more than the average family gets by going out to work. This will come into force by 2013 and will save hundreds of millions of pounds (George Osborne, Speech to Conservative Party Conference, 4 October 2010).
- Work Programme created. The Work Programme will harness the expertise of private and third sector specialists to provide personalised support for those with the greatest barriers to employment including the long term unemployed and disabled (Spending Review, 20 October 2010).
- 880,000 of the lowest paid lifted out of tax altogether. The Chancellor announced that 880,000 of the lowest paid will be taken out of tax altogether by raising the personal allowance to £7,475 from 1 April 2011 (June Budget, 22 June 2010).
- Immigration capped. From next April, only 21,700 skilled and highly skilled workers from outside Europe will be allowed into the United Kingdom. Tougher standards will also make sure that foreign workers don't end up in positions which could be filled by people already in the UK (Home Office Press Release, 23 November 2010).
Help for the poorest and the most vulnerable
- Earnings link to pensions restored. The earnings link to pensions will be re-introduced in April along with a triple lock to guarantee rises in the basic state pension of at least 2.5 per cent (June Budget, 22 June 2010).
- Child Tax Credit increased to support struggling families. In addition to the £150 and £60 increases in the June Budget, the child element will be increased above indexation by £30 in 2011-12 and £50 in 2012-13 - ensuring the Spending Review will have no measurable impact on child poverty in the next two years. This will provide support to 4 million lower income families. This will mean annual increases of £180 and then £110 above the level promised by Labour.
- Pupil premium unveiled. We have set out detailed plans for our pupil premium for the poorest pupils, worth £625 million in 2011-12, rising to £2.5 billion in 2014-15. In 2011-12, the pupil premium will be allocated to pupils eligible for free school meals. It will be worth £430 per pupil and will be the same for every deprived pupil, no matter where they live. This is on top of maintaining per pupil funding to local authorities in cash terms (Hansard, 13 December 2010, Col. 70WS).
- Operational Allowance for the Armed Forces doubled. David Cameron announced that the Operational Allowance, paid to service personnel for each day spent in the most demanding of conflicts, would be doubled and backdated to 6 May 2010 (Prime Minister David Cameron, Speech at Camp Bastion, 11 June 2010).
- National Security Council created. The Government established a National Security Council and appointed a National Security Adviser for the first time in May (Downing Street Website, 12 May 2010).
- Afghanistan strategy clarified. Our strategy on Afghanistan has been clarified, setting out our determination that we will succeed in creating a stable Afghanistan and there will not be British troops in a combat role in Afghanistan by 2015 (David Cameron, Statement on Afghanistan, 14 June 2010, Statement to the House of Commons, 28 June 2010).
- Strategic Defence and Security Review published. The first in twelve years, this will ensure our mission in Afghanistan is protected and that we emerge with a coherent defence capability in 2020 (Ministry of Defence Press Release, 19 October 2010).
- Commitment to renewing the Trident nuclear deterrent. In the Strategic Defence and Security Review, the Government announced that we 'will maintain a continuous submarine-based deterrent and begin the work of replacing its existing submarines' (Strategic Defence and Security Review, 19 October 2010).
- Council Tax freeze for 2011-12. The Treasury has set aside an extra £650 million to help local authorities in England freeze their council tax next year, meaning local taxpayers living in an average Band D home in England could save up to £70 (CLG Press Release, 21 October 2010).
- Giving people power. The Localism Bill will put an end to the hoarding of power within central government and top-down control of communities, allowing local people the freedom to run their lives and neighbourhoods in their own way (Localism Bill, 13 December 2010).
- Bin taxes scrapped. Ministers have dismissed 'pay as you throw' taxes because they would lead to more fly-tipping to dodge fines, saying people should be given incentives to recycle not punishments (CLG Press Release, 7 June 2010).
- Garden grabbing stopped. Councils and communities are being given new powers to prevent the destructive practice of 'garden grabbing' and to decide what types of homes are suitable for their area (CLG Press Release, 9 June 2010).
- HIPs scrapped. The Government scrapped Home Information Packs to help the housing market (CLG Press Release, 20 May 2010).
- Referendum Lock. We have introduced a Bill containing a 'Referendum Lock' on the transfer of any further powers from the UK Parliament to the EU institutions. Never again will the British people have to look on powerless when a Government signs away their powers to the EU without their permission (FCO Press release, 8 December).
Police and Crime
- Police reforms. In December the Police Reform Bill started its passage through Parliament. This will introduce directly-elected police and crime commissioners putting the public back at the heart of policing, cutting police bureaucracy to get officers out onto the streets. It also rebalances licensing laws to tackle problem pubs and clubs, reclaiming high streets for sensible drinkers (Home Office Press Release, 1 December 2010).
- Scrapping Labour's ID cards project. In May, the Government announced the scrapping of Labour's ID cards project. Home Secretary Theresa May said: 'With swift Parliamentary approval, we aim to consign identity cards and the intrusive ID card scheme to history within 100 days.' (BBC News Online, 27 May 2010)
- Fighting back against legal highs. The Government will be able to quickly respond to new substances that emerge on the market by temporarily banning them for 12 months, until a fuller investigation by the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs can be completed into whether they should be made illegal (Home Office Press Release, 20 August 2010).
- Green Deal. The Government has introduced legislation to allow households to improve the energy efficiency of their house at no upfront cost, repaying through the savings they make on their energy bills (DECC Press Release, 9 December 2010; HM Treasury, Spending Review, October 2010).
- Carbon Capture and Storage. The Spending Review announced that up to £1 billion will be invested in delivering one of the world's first commercial scale Carbon Capture and Storage demonstration projects in the UK (HM Treasury, Spending Review, October 2010).
- Green Investment Bank. The Spending Review committed to £1 billion of funding and additional significant proceeds from asset sales to capitalise a UK wide Green Investment Bank, This will aim to provide financial interventions to unlock significant new private investment in green infrastructure projects, such as offshore wind farms (HM Treasury, Spending Review, October 2010).