Call for "Robin Hood Tax" to raise public funds
NEWPORT council could be set to join calls for a so-called Robin Hood Tax on Britain’s financial sector.
Labour councillors Cllrs Debbie Davies and Tom Bond will this Tuesday call for a tax on financial transactions to be extended so an extra £20 billion a year can be raised for public coffers.
The authority will write to the UK Government if the councillors motion to full council is passed, joining other authorities in England and Wales who have done the same.
The motion says that the council is continuing to face unprecedented financial strains in a period of austerity, which is having a “real impact on public services” despite the efforts of the Welsh Government.
It says that by extending the current Financial Transaction Tax – popularly known as the Robin Hood Tax – on shares to other financial products like bonds or derivatives, £20 billion extra could be raised.
Cllr Bond, who represents Rogerstone, said: “It’s part of a growing movement – lots of councils are getting involved and putting their name to it.
“It’s really a response to the financial crash and its part of a response to build a more equitable economy.”
Beechwood Cllr Davies, who is cabinet member for skills and work, said: “Clearly its not within our jurisdiction but as a consequence of the motion we would write to government in support of the Robin Hood Tax.
“It’s giving a stronger voice to reflect how many people feel across the UK.”
However senior Tory opposition councillor David Fouweather said the tax was “bad for business and bad for Britain” and would result in financial institutions taking their business to New York or Hong Kong.
“It’s nothing to do with the council, it’s national government – it’s something put through by the EU,” he said.
Cllr Fouweather added that he thought the move was an attempt to deflect away from his own motion calling for council question sessions not to be restricted to queries written in advance.
Cllr Bond rejected that criticism saying the timing wasn’t deliberate: “We’ve been looking to bring this to council for sometime.”
The full council meeting takes place on April 29 at 5pm.
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