‘SNP would let London decide tax rates’ -Miliband

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THE SNP’s plans for independence would hand London control of income tax rates, Ed Miliband has claimed.

The UK Labour leader said Alex Salmond had refused to match his promise to restore the 50p tax rate for top earners in case it placed the country at a “tax disadvantage”.

In his speech to the Scottish Labour conference in Perth, Mr Miliband said that stance would mean “in an independent Scotland the top rate of tax would be set not in Scotland but in London, by a government in London with no Scottish representation”.

Labour set out its plans to extend devolution in the event of a No vote in the referendum earlier this week, announcing Holyrood would have the power to vary tax rates by up to 15p in the pound, giving Scotland control of three quarters of the 20p basic rate of income tax. In addition MSPs would also get powers to increase the higher rates of income tax.

Mr Miliband said the benefits of the UK included “pooling our talents, pooling our resources, sharing the benefits and sharing the risks”.

He said: “When it comes to the 50p tax rate in some parts of the country there will be more people paying the 50p tax rate than other parts of the country.

“But it is right that they pay their fair share to support people across our country, because we are better together. This is the whole idea of the United Kingdom, that we share these risks and it doesn’t matter to us if people are Scottish, English, Welsh or Northern Irish.

“We support each other because of our ties, because of our bonds and on that basis we redistribute.”