Budget 2012

Budget boxThe Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne MP, presented his Budget to Parliament today, 21 March 2012. This is the third Budget of the Coalition Government. In his Budget speech the Chancellor outlined how the Government plans to raise and spend money in the coming year. Some key points of the Budget include:-

  • From April 2013, the 50p top rate of tax will be cut to 45p
  • Automatic review of state pension age to ensure it keeps pace with increasing lifespans
  • Personal income tax allowance raised to £9,205 from April 2013

You can find all of the Budget documents online on the HM Treasury website.

The House of Commons Library has produced a briefing paper on the Background to the 2012 Budget, and a Research Paper on economic indicators.

The full text of the Chancellor’s statement is available from the HM Treasury website.

Selected recent publications from Scottish Parliament & Government

Recent publications from the Parliament & Government

  • Delivering for Scotland: The Government’s Programme for Scotland 2010-2011 – Annual publication which lays out the government’s legislative programme for the coming year, including 10 bill proposals designed to protect public services and support businesses and families through a period of economic uncertainty
  • Higher Education: Qualifications, Quality Assurance and Assessment (SPICe Briefing 10/61) – paper provides a summary of the qualifications on offer at higher education institutions in Scotland. Also explains the differences between the types of institutions and how they are assessed
  • Recommendations of the Commission on Scottish Devolution Regarding Scottish Parliament Procedures (SP Paper 490) – 5th Report from the Standards, Procedures and Public Appointments Committee – the new UK Government intends to implement recommendations of the final report of the Commission on Scottish Devolution (Calman Commission) therefore the Committee has laid out proposals to Parliament on how this should be implemented in the areas of parliamentary procedure
  • Review of Class Size Control Mechanisms: Report of the Working Group – this group analysed current practice in Scotland, which is thought to be too complex, and compared this against practice in other countries. Guidance is provided on how best to set class sizes, but the decision should rest with education authorities who can make informed decisions at school level
  • Scottish Health Survey 2009: Vol. 1 Main Report / Vol. 2 Technical Report – fifth report commissioned by the Scottish Government Health Directorates. Results of the survey are presented in a 2 volume report and include data on general health and wellbeing, dental health, physical activity and obesity
  • Spending Implications of Demographic Change (Financial Scrutiny Unit Briefing 10/60) – paper looks at measures which could be taken now to prepare for sound public spending in the future. For example, health services and pensions are under threat due to our ageing population in Scotland
  • Troublesome Youth Groups, Gangs and Knife Carrying in Scotland – research report regarding knife crime in Scotland, and recommendations for changes to existing policy
  • Unemployment (SPICe Briefing 10/59) – briefing provides latest claimant count data on number of unemployed in Scotland, by Scottish Parliament constituency areas
  • Some recent items from the Scottish Government and Parliament

  • Draft National Guidance: Under-Age Sexual Activity – Meeting the needs of Children and Young People and Identifying Child Protection Concerns: Consultation – Consultation is open until 23rd July 2010. It is estimated that approx. 25-30% of children under the age of 16 engage in sexual activitity, not all of which should be treated as a child protection issue, but simply part of natural development. This consultation looks at ways to address the needs of children under either circumstance.
  • In-Court Mediation Pilot Projects – In-court mediation pilots ran in Sherriff Courts in Glasgow and Aberdeen between March 2006 and July 2008, an initiative followed through by the Scottish Government. This research on the projects was carried out by researchers at the University of Aberdeen Law School
  • Independent School Census, September 2009 – a National Statistics publication which covers independent primary, secondary and special schools
  • Racist Incidents Recorded by the Police in Scotland, 2004-05 to 2008-09 – statistical bulletin which presents data on number of racist incidents recorded by the eight police forces in Scotland in 2008-09
  • Unemployment (SPICe Briefing 10-26) – latest unemployment data for Scottish Parliamentary constituency areas. Highlights the best and worst performing areas over previous month.