Friday, November 16, 2018
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Tag: Government

Over 70 cross-party MPs support early FOBT implementation date

FOBT-Hammond,politics
Over 70 cross-party MPs support April 2019 FOBT implementation date A cross-party group of MPs, will tabled a new clause and a sequence of amendments to the Finance Bill to bring forward the implementation date for Fixed Odds Betting Terminals (FOBTs) to April 2019. This follows the announcement last month that the Government intends to implement the £2 stake maximum stake...

Pressure grows on Hammond for rates redress

Phillip Hammond, government, Vince Cable, tax, government
There are growing calls for the chancellor to level the taxation playing-field between the high-street and online retailers, after it became clear that British companies will pay an additional £728m in business rates next year. The increase reflects a 2.4 per cent rise in inflation, and is set to bring next the total bill levelled at UK business next year...

Enforce the FOBT stake – or we’ll do it for you, say legislators

FOBT, politics, government, Philip Hammond,
A coalition of over thirty members of parliament and peers have called on the Chancellor to enforce the government’s promised reduction in FOBT stakes - and have pledged to take matters into their own hands if he does not. In a joint letter published last week in Parliament’s The House magazine, signatories from all major parties and both chambers praised...

Ignored and isolated: Kingsley Park Working Men’s Club receive the silent treatment from the HMRC

kingsley-working-mens club
Kingsley Park Working Men’s Club has been battling to reclaim VAT paid to HMRC for over four years. Caught in the fall- out of a push me pull me legal battle, the WMC remains adamant that the money - nearly £40,000 - is their’s. Barry Slasberg has been driving the case but has hit a wall of silence. Not...

Government to face ‘tough questions’ over support for seaside resorts

UK seaside-politics
A cross-party group of peers has promised to push the government for answers on how it will support seaside resorts after they visited Skegness last week. Members of the House of Lords have said they will press the government on issues surrounding support for seaside resorts - and businesses within them - after a fact-finding mission to Skegness. Members of the...

‘No-deal’ would hurt seaside resorts, claims Thornberry

Emily Thornberry
Labour’s shadow foreign secretary has predicted that a ‘no- deal’ Brexit would hurt traditional seaside resorts such as Blackpool and Cleethorpes. Last last week’s Labour Party conference, Emily Thornberry warned that a rise in inflation, as predicted by the Bank of England in the event of a‘no-deal’ scenario, would mean both tourists from abroad and staycationers would be put off...

Unsustainable Brighton disruption to wreak havoc on south-coast amusements

Brighton train station
An extended period of Brighton’s isolation via rail could see business halved at the city’s Palace Pier, says its chief executive. Business representatives of the Brighton and Hove Tourism Alliance - including executives from Brighton Pier and the i360 - had sat down with management from Network Rail and Govia Thameslink Railway last month,with the attractions’ lobby hoping to minimise...

“Follow the lead” of inclusive tourist attractions, urge ministers

Disability ramp sign
A leading Blackpool attraction is among those tipped by government as a template for how operators approach provision for disabled visitors. Two government ministers have urged leisure operators to follow the example of Sandcastle Waterpark in Blackpool by ensuring that the needs of disabled visitors are fully catered for. Minister for disabled people Sarah Newton and Tourism Minister Michael Ellis have...

Bugger the business rates, says Cable

Vince Cable
The latest policy document from the Liberal Democrats wants to do-away with business rates completely, placing the burden of commercial property taxes squarely with land-owners. The Liberal Democrats have laid-down a new plan to abolish the current system of business rates in favour of land-value taxation on commercial property owners. In his introduction to the new proposals, Lib Dem leader...

Fears of no-deal Brexit grow as government releases contingency plan

Brexit
Negotiating ministers have assured the public that a deal is likely to be reached by November at the latest - but the release of detailed “no-deal” Brexit advisory papers has shaken up some in Westminster. New Brexit secretary Dominic Raab has issued a raft of documents - which he says provides “practical and proportionate” guidance for British businesses to draw...

Glasgow struggles for legal means of B2 redress

Glasgow skyline
Lawmakers in Scotland’s largest city wish to clamp down on FOBT stakes, but fear the litigious clout of the bookmaker. Glasgow City Council fears legal reprisal if it attempts to enforce its desired crackdown on maximum FOBT stakes, according to a new document put before local legislators last week. There are at present 800 of the machines distributed across the city’s...

Customer, operator, Commission: With cashless technology, everyone’s a winner

Pound Coins
When a government-owned institution as old as The Royal Mint believes that it must have cashless payment options to survive in modern Britain, it creates a convincing picture for the amusements industry’s need to follow suit as soon as possible - and what better time before the Gambling Commission’s upcoming data drive? We need to be relevant to younger people...

A new Civil Society: Government seeks long-term collaboration with private sector

Houses of Parliament
A new Civil Society Strategy envisions collaboration between business and community leaders. For some of the amusements sector on the high street, that’ll be a first. Last week saw the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport unveil a new vision for Civil Society in the UK - the first scheme of its kind for fifteen years. The strategy,which will be...

CBI suggests a ‘A New Approach to Migration’

Immigration
Following the Home Affairs Committee’s report on migration at the end of last month, the Confederation of British Industry has published its own view, titled ‘Open and Controlled - A New Approach to Migration’, calling for a smart replacement to the unpopular freedom of movement immigration policy. British businesses want to see a new approach to migration that remains open...

Policy options for future migration from the European Economic Area

Houses of Parliament
In the summary of an interim report “published to inform Parliament and the public about the limited statements so far from the Government on future migration policy”, the Home Affairs Committee - chaired by Yvette Cooper MP - suggests the UK needs “a good overall deal” with the EU. With eight months to go until the United Kingdom leaves the...

UKHospitality welcomes new APPG rates reform calls

Kate Nicholls
UKHospitality has welcomed a report from the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Entrepreneurship that has called for the government to rapidly reform current business rates structures in the UK. UKHospitality chief executive Kate Nicholls said: “The report identifies considerable flaws in the current tax system and calls for a complete overhaul; something that we have consistently called for. The current system...

Gambling Commission to crackdown on operators who don’t treat consumers fairly

Gambling Commission
New rules from the Gambling Commission, which come into force from 31 October 2018, mean gambling companies that break advertising rules or breach consumer law will face tougher action. The new requirements, which follow an open consultation, provide "stronger protection for consumers" and ensure they are treated fairly by gambling businesses The changes mean: - It will be easier to take action,...

Tourism VAT cut would be “revenue neutral” by third year

Coinslot HM Treasury
While the industry would benefit immediately, the Treasury would only have to wait three years to start seeing a profit from cutting tourism VAT, according to the Cut Tourism VAT campaign that wants to see the 20 percent figure slashed to five percent. A cut to the VAT charged on tourism related products would be revenue neutral by the third...

UKHospitality calls for more action on rates

UKHopsitality has made it clear to the treasury that it must undertake a serious re-evaluation of current business rates guidelines if the future prosperity of the hospitality industry is to be ensured. The trade body responded to a statement released by the chancellor that was in turn a retort to a Committee letter expressing concern that the current business rates...

Pressure mounts on FOBT stake cut implementation

Houses of Parliament
April 2020 is simply not good enough for politicians chasing a £2 maximum stake on FOBTs, with MPs signing an Early Day Motion and the House of Lords piling pressure on the government. An Early Day Motion calling for the immediate implementation of a £2 maximum stake on FOBTs is gaining traction with MPs as pressure also mounts on the...

“Yes, Minister in real life”: New UK insurance rules dampen staycation spirit

UK Seaside
As the warm weather continues to boost staycation figures across the country, a new insurance directive - extended beyond its original intention by the UK government - is costing B&B and hotel owners, and by association the entire tourism and attractions industry. UK-based B&B and hotel operators are being forced to choose between paying-up to insurance companies or providing a...

House of Lords backs bookmakers in two year FOBT implementation

House of Commons
The Association of British Bookmakers has hit back at claims by the Local Government Association that a delay on FOBT maximum stake implementation is caused by the industry “blocking an early implementation.” The claims, made by Councillor Simon Blackburn, chair of the LGA Safer and Stronger Communities Board, were dismissed by the ABB as necessary for a significant alteration to...

Revolving door politics

coinslot FOBT campaign BALPPA
The industry has a new Secretary of State - 26 weeks after welcoming the last one. So, asks Olly Gully, is this what the government meant by ‘strong stable leadership’? You wait ages for a bus and then three come along at the same time. The first was so slow and stuttery it took over half a decade for it to...

Government reconsidering beer duty freeze

Houses of Parliament
In what would represent a potentially damaging u-turn on policy, the government is considering scrapping the beer duty freeze it introduced only last year. It has been reported that the Treasury is looking to free up £200m from raising the duty on beer as it looks to find alternative means to finance further spending plans. Brigid Simmonds, chief executive of the...

Gabi Stergides: Implement FOBT cut ASAP

Coinslot FOBTs
In a letter to the Prime Minister, Bacta president Gabi Stergides expresses the need for swift implementation of the decision to cut FOBT stakes to £2, while also offering the trade association’s assistance to Theresa May’s advisor. As President of bacta, the trade association representing the UK Amusement Industry, I am writing to welcome the Government’s decision in reducing the...

Bacta request to meet PM advisors

Gabi Stergides
In a letter addressed to Theresa May, Bacta has reiterated the importance of FOBT stake cut implementation and requested to meet with the Prime Minister’s advisors. President Gabi Stergides sent the letter on Tuesday 26 June, thanking May for her “commitment and leadership” in the decision to cut FOBT stakes, but also expressing concern regarding reports that implementation could take...

More than 100 MPs back early day motion to save British pubs

Pubs
Over 100 MPs have backed an early day motion calling on the UK Government to reduce the tax burden on British pubs. With 18 pubs across the country closing each week, MPs have rallied their support for a motion tabled by chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Save the Pub Group, Tony Perkins MP, to alleviate taxation on the great British...

All bookie-backed hands on deck to stop £2 stake cut

William Hill/Ladbrokes
Betfred’s boss, Will Hill’s chairman, JenningBet’s MD and the bookie’s Bonnie and Clyde in parliament all scrambled last week to make a last ditch attempt to stop FOBTs maximum stake from being cut to £2. Bookmakers made what could be their last attempts at lobbying last week in anticipation of an announcement from the DCMS on the maximum stake for...

Brexit and the tourism industry: DCMS tackle questions of support

Houses of Parliament
Despite a boost to Britain’s tourism statistics after the 2016 referendum, long term challenges remain for the industry. Last week, politicians from across the country asked the DCMS’ Michael Ellis how he would support tourism through Brexit and beyond. MPs from across the political spectrum convened in the house of commons two weeks ago to discuss the potential impact of...

BBPA comments on Government response to consultation on FOBTs

Pub stakes
The British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA) has commented on the Government response to the consultation on proposals for changes to Gaming Machines and Social Responsibility Measures. Brigid Simmonds, Chief Executive of BBPA said: “The BBPA is disappointed that no changes have been made in particular to the stake for Category C machines - we had asked for an increase...

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