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London First calls for Mayor to have greater control over London’s taxes

London First today supported the conclusions of the London Finance Commission in calling for the mayor to have direct control over the tax revenue generated by London. By 2020, London should be allowed to retain a greater proportion of the tax that it generates. This would replace the current system under which London’s taxes are paid to central government and then partially given back in the form of a grant to the Mayor. The amount of money would remain broadly the same but the uncertainty of the stop-go funding cycle would be eliminated.

Commenting on the publication of the London Finance Commission report today Baroness Jo Valentine, Chief Executive of London First, said:

“Londoners and London businesses pay significantly more in tax than is spent in London and London government is largely dependent on an unpredictable and uncertain grant from central government. This makes it difficult for London government to plan investment spending properly.  We agree that London government should retain a greater proportion of the taxes raised in London at levels broadly consistent with current spending. Where further functions are devolved, so too should be tax revenues. It’s time to free the Mayor from having to spend his time lobbying central government, and going cap in hand to the Treasury, when he should be focused on positive actions to bring in investment and growth.”

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