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Greens vow to raise top tax rate

Published 12/04/2015

Green Party leader Natalie Bennett said raising the top rate of tax would bring in an extra £2 billion a year
Green Party leader Natalie Bennett said raising the top rate of tax would bring in an extra £2 billion a year

The Green Party have said they would put up the top rate of tax to 60p in the pound.

Party leader Natalie Bennett said the move would bring in an extra £2 billion a year for public services while acting as a disincentive to firms paying "excessively high" salaries.

"For too long now the economy in this country has worked for those at the top, while failing everyone else," she said.

"The 60p tax will raise money to fund crucial public services, contributing towards the reversal of the failed policy of austerity that is making the poor, the disadvantaged and the young pay for the greed and fraud of the bankers.

"Only the Green Party are proposing radical changes which will redistribute wealth within our economy and encourage companies to reduce the gap between their highest- and lowest-earners."

The top rate of tax - paid on incomes over £150,000-a-year - currently stands at 45p after it was cut from 50p by the coalition.

Ms Bennett said there had been an "undue focus on the deficit" as she told BBC One's The Andrew Marr Show that her party's manifesto would be released next week.

Speaking about her party's pledge to put up the top rate of tax to 60p in the pound, she said: "Some people are taking too much out of our society, they need to pay back."

The party's proposed wealth tax, she said, would apply to people worth more than £3 million, be 2% a year and would be a self-declaration, adding: "We need to rebalance this society."

Asked if her party wanted to ban the Grand National and if she had "a flutter' on the world famous horse race, she said: "I confess I wasn't watching, didn't know anything about it."

Ms Bennett said her party wanted to call for a review of all "commercial animal racing" and focus on a "whole range of issues dealing with animal protection" including the badger cull, banning snares and tackling factory farming.

She said: "I can give you an exclusive preview of our manifesto which says we want a complete review of all horse and greyhound racing," adding: "There are clearly animal protection issues there which need to be addressed."

Asked about her party's red line issues in any coalition negotiation, she replied: "We've identified a range of issues and obviously anti-austerity, making sure that the poor, the disadvantaged don't continue to pay for the greed and fraud of the bankers."

She added: "We are the party that says everybody in this society should have access to resources for a decent quality of life and we have to live within the environmental limits of our planet."

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