Caron Bradshaw OBE, CEO of Charity Finance Group, shares her initial thoughts on the Chancellor's Autumn budget statement:
"Today’s budget could be described as the good, the bad and the ugly. There's no doubt that it includes some welcome announcements. We’re delighted that the Chancellor has acted upon many of the sector’s recommendations.
"It’s great news for charities that business rates relief will be retained. And our joint call with Charity Tax Group and others to extend the Museum and Galleries Exhibition Tax Relief until March 2024 is good news too.
"We also welcome the promised investment in skills, education, youth services, community football and local outdoor spaces. The focus on towns outside of the south-east of England is welcome news also.
"But, it's what’s missing from the budget that spells bad news for millions. With no reversal of the cuts to Universal Credit and a delayed reversal of the foreign aid budget cuts, the Chancellor’s announcements will do little to quell the fears of the most vulnerable, and those who face the rising costs of living with trepidation.
"The increase of 3% to local government has failed to address our calls to put it on a sustainable footing. Money to the UK Shared Prosperity Fund falls well short also. All this will have a negative impact on the government’s ambition to level up.
"It’s critical that government supports civil society and engages with us. Only then can we boost those levelling up ambitions, and help put this ugly crisis behind us – all while we continue to serve those who desperately need us."
Find out what the Autumn Budget 2021 means for you. Read our briefing.
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