Author Archives: Tony Vickers

Opinion: Why fear this tax?

Our last Manifesto included a commitment to “reform business rates, creating a fairer system where rates are based on site values rather than rental values. “Site Value Rating” (SVR – a purely local tax) had been party policy for decades but until 2010 never made it to a manifesto. The Party had never embraced a Land Value Tax (LVT) as a key part of our national economic policy.

Since the debt-fuelled property boom led to the present global financial crisis there have been statements in support of LVT from leading figures in all the other parties. Tory Planning Minister Nick …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged | 26 Comments

Opinion: Lo-Tax for the Lib Dems

landRaising the tax-free personal allowance is the Lib Dems’ headline contribution to this Government – so popular that the Tories are trying to claim it as theirs! But when Danny Alexander said that our next manifesto should include a promise to raise and peg the personal allowance to the National Minimum Wage (almost £13,000) he was setting his tax policy working group a challenge: to find £12bn a year from elsewhere.

According to the Institute for Fiscal Studies this isn’t progressive. Highest earners and others benefit, while …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , and | 38 Comments

New book: The Case for a New People’s Budget

To many of us, notably Vince Cable, it has for long been blindingly obvious that the property boom would end – and end in pain for millions around the world.

The scale of the crash may have surprised even most who expected something like it at this time, as borrowing against unsecured ‘bubble’ land values was bound to lead to massive default.

However the Lib Dems’ campaign group on land value taxation (LVT) which I chair, ALTER, believes that the ‘Credit Crunch’ can be turned into a major opportunity for the Party, if it can press home its renewed conviction …

Posted in Books and Op-eds | Tagged , , and | 2 Comments

Opinion: Where for Land Value Tax after conference vote?

A week after the Lib Dem Conference debate on “Green Tax Switch Mark 2″, how does our tax policy look from an ALTERnate perspective (i.e. not Chris Rennard’s)? Well, I’ve almost sold out of my book’s first printing (would someone like to post a review on Amazon?) and most LVT supporters who were there agree that having Vince Cable claim membership of ALTER and fulsome support for its aims in his summating speech was worth more than any show of hands in the conference hall.

Even Arnie Gibbons, who until recently used to move away – or mutter most foul – on hearing any discussion at Conference about Land Tax, was quite nice about us. We are accepted in polite circles – well Liberal ones anyway.

Posted in Conference and Op-eds | 2 Comments

Opinion: Lib Dems must support LVT

I’ve been asked to preview the conclusions and argument for my book Location Matters: Recycling Britain’s Wealth here. If you subscribe to Liberator or Challenge (the Green Lib Dems’ journal) you will get reviews by others of the book before Conference. In the current Challenge you will also see a piece by me about how the Liberal Democrats’ Tax Commission got in such a depressingly non-radical place with Land Value Taxation (LVT) – which is what my book is about.

What I want to do here is explain the conception of the book, its purpose and what I hope happens next. But first, as requested, in a single sentence: conclusions and arguments. If the Liberal Democrats do not go into the next General Election campaign with a pledge to retain some form of nation-wide property tax at the same time as scrapping Council Tax, they will have betrayed their forebears and – more importantly – future generations of British people and will not deserve the support of voters.

Posted in Books, Conference and Op-eds | Tagged | 6 Comments



Recent Comments

  • User AvatarRadical Liberal 19th Apr - 3:26pm
    Stephen Howse writes 'Far too polarising a figure'. But, of course, Clegg isn't. One rule for the right wing leadership, another rule for everyone else...
  • User AvatarJoe Otten 19th Apr - 2:57pm
    Simon, I believe non-taxpayers can already get tax relief on pension contributions up to a limit of £3600 a year after relief. Aimed at non-earning...
  • User AvatarRoland 19th Apr - 2:48pm
    @JohnTilley You raise an interesting and important points about what units people use and take note of: Firstly, your observation about cars. I suspect that...
  • User Avatarpeter tyzack 19th Apr - 2:18pm
    .. they can't announce the shortlist yet as there are at least two appeals to be sorted out first...
  • User AvatarRoland 19th Apr - 2:07pm
    Jenny, I'm not sure which bit of my point you were referring to in the first part of your comment. My understanding is that wind...
  • User AvatarStephen Howse 19th Apr - 2:04pm
    Far too polarising a figure. As for this: "Given the dominance of white men in the party leadership – our leader, deputy leader, party president...