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    TFA Endorses MP's Report on SPS Fiasco
02/04/07

The Tenant Farmers Association has congratulated the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee of the House of Commons for its thorough report into the events that lead up to the Single Payment Scheme fiasco of last year.

The Tenant Farmers Association's Chief Executive, George Dunn, said “We have been told by the Treasury that the changes announced by the Chancellor are all to do with international competitiveness issues and were not intended to be seen as anti-farming per se.  What that says to me is that the Government cares little about the impact of its economic policy on British farmers and our nation's food security – well at least we know were we stand and what to expect if Gordon Brown succeeds to the Premiership”.

Increases over the period to 2009 in the duty for red diesel, vehicle excise duty and the lower rate of corporation tax, coupled with the changes to the rules on capital allowances and the removal of the 10 per cent income tax band all spell bad news for the farming community.

“Where was the good news in this Budget?  Apart from the extension of the 20p discount in bio-ethanol duty to 2010 it was hard to find.  Where was the Chancellor's response to the well thought out fiscal recommendations of the Tenancy Reform Industry Group (TRIG) which have support not just across industry organisations but professional bodies too?  The TRIG recommendations are aimed at creating opportunities for investment and innovation in rural areas and the fact that the Chancellor has ignored them for four years displays an arrogance unfitting in modern government” said Mr Dunn.

“The TFA has also asked the Treasury to consider what it can do to help with the housing issues faced by agricultural tenants needing to retire from their farms but with nowhere to live.  We proposed some form of tax discount or credit for landlords prepared to let their retiring tenants remain in estate accommodation at below market rents.  Despite the fact that this would help to improve the efficiency of land use and ease the pressure on affordable housing, we don't even hear from the Treasury that it is thinking about it” said Mr Dunn.

link Defra Puts Knife into Farm Payments
link Chancellor Fails to Think About Farmers - Again
link Green budget, great opportunities for farmers

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