Lib Dems change agenda on income tax

Link: BUDGET 2002: NI to rise 1% next April

This key pledge has been abandoned in the wake of government promises to raise education spending by £13bn a year from a penny increase in national insurance.

Instead the party will now focus on reducing central government control on the way public money is spent, particurlarly how NI contributions are distributed to the NHS, and the devolution of health responsibilities to the regions.

An official for the party told the FT: ‘We are not a tax-and-spend party. The money is now there – the question is how it is spent.’

The Liberal Democrats national conference takes place from the 22 to 28 September in Brighton.

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