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Wednesday, 16 April 2014

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Chancellor praises Carlisle in Commons - twice

Chancellor George Osborne has flagged up Carlisle’s economic success.

George Osborne photo
George Osborne

Statistics show the city has better growth in jobs than London – a fact he was keen to shout about.

Mr Osborne mentioned the figure as he delivered his autumn statement in the House of Commons.

He also flagged up lobbying from Carlisle’s Conservative MP John Stevenson which has led to employers’ National Insurance contribution for under-21s being removed.

Mr Stevenson said: “I was delighted Carlisle was mentioned twice.

“It puts us on the map.”

On the National Insurance success, he added: “It’s great that the Chancellor has peoples’ representations on this issue and is trying to deal with unemployment, particularly youth unemployment. I think it was a positive autumn statement.”

Writing on our business website in-cumbria.com, Graham Pole, a tax expert at Carlisle accountancy firm Armstrong Watson, said it was the first autumn statement when he could recall Carlisle being mentioned twice.

He wrote: “The statement was also filled with better economic news especially on growth, which has been revised upwards, and underlying borrowing which was lower than expected and is expected to fall further.

“In particular, the Government has listened to those championing the high street and is capping business rate increases to two per cent, which is helpful, although it is still an increase.

“For some smaller businesses there will be £1,000 off their business rates charge for the next two years and a halving of rates for re-occupations.”

Penrith and the Border Tory MP Rory Stewart said of the statement: “ I was particularly pleased that fuel duty will now be frozen until 2015. We have some of the highest rates of fuel poverty in the country.”

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