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Budget 2021: Chancellor must change course and not hit local families in March Budget

Stephen Morgan MP has urged the Chancellor to ‘change course’ and to not hit local families with an expected triple blow of council tax hikes, frozen pay and cuts to social security at his Budget this week.

As Britain begins its economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, the Official Opposition is urging Sunak to change course to protect family finances and get Britain back on the road to recovery.

It is understood that Rishi Sunak MP plans to slash Universal Credit by £20 a week from April, which would mean at least 21,420 people in Portsmouth will take £1040 a year hit to their finances.

It is also expected that Sunak will ask families to pay for gaps in council budgets rather than fulfilling his pledge to back them. That could amount to as much as £89 extra on annual household council tax bills for the average Band D home in Portsmouth.

The Chancellor is also hitting every key worker earning over £18,000 in England with a real terms pay cut this year. This includes at least 13,900 key workers in Portsmouth – the teachers, police officers and Armed Forces personnel on the front line of the battle against Covid-19.

The Member of Parliament for Portsmouth South, commented:

Families, small businesses and key workers have been hit particularly hard by this crisis. This is an opportunity to give them the tools they need to find their feet and recover.

“This is not the time to implement both morally and economically illiterate plans that would take support away from some of those who need it most.

“With the Chancellor set to announce his plans for the Budget on Wednesday, he must recognise that this is a make or break moment for Britain. Rishi Sunak must do all he can to secure our economy and put the country on the road to recovery – and that means protecting family finances.”

Mr Morgan has previously called for support for workers and businesses to be extended and recently backed Labour’s proposed British Business Recovery Agency.