THE Budget offered plenty of good news and encouragement for people and businesses in Dorset.

The economy is in a healthy position, with growth for 2019 revised upwards, employment set to increase by 800,000 by 2023 and wages forecast to rise above inflation in each of the next five years.

This vindicates the government’s balanced approach to the economy and means we are in a strong position to boost our vital public services and help people immediately with the cost of living.

The NHS is getting an extra £20.5billion in real terms by 2023/24, to include a significant boost for mental health, while councils will receive an additional £1billion towards social care and potholes, among other


Perhaps the most striking announcement was the decision to cut income tax a year early, in spring 2019, enabling millions of people to keep more of what they earn.

I was also pleased to see the increase in the National Living Wage, the freezing of fuel duty and the additional £1.7billion a year to help working families on Universal Credit.

Another stand-out was the decision to cut business rates by a third for retailers with a rateable value under £51,000, providing a welcome boost to our high


With the economy recovering well following Labour’s mismanagement before 2010, it’s important we maintain the discipline and avoid the prospect of Jeremy Corbyn taking us back to square one by raising taxes to the highest level in peacetime history and sending debt soaring.



South West Conservatives