Delivering Dilnot: paying for elderly care

Cutting emissions coverPaul Burstow

January 2013

The recommendations of the Dilnot Commission on Funding of Care and Support have won widespread support from the sector and across the political spectrum. Demographic changes over the coming decades mean that reform can no longer be postponed. The question now is whether the government can find the resolve - and the funding - to deliver practical reform that works for Britain.

'Delivering Dilnot: paying for elderly care includes pieces from a wide range of contributors, from Paul Burstow MP - former Care Services Minister under the Coalition - and Lord Sutherland - former chair of the Royal Commission on Long Term Care under Labour - to a carer and a pensioner who face our current broken system.

It emphasises that tough political deceisions must be made to deliver reform, and proposes how it can be funded a way that is fair and sustainable. The report also looks at what the private sector needs in order to deliver the necessary insurance products.

Together, these contributions make the case for Dilnot's proposals, and show how they can be realised without further delay.

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Select media coverage: BBC, Channel 4, Evening StandardGuardianITV, Sky News, Telegraph

Freedom, fairness and responsibility: a submission to the Autumn Statement 2012

Adam Corlett, Tom Frostick and Sean O'Brien
November 2012

The Autumn Statement on 5 December is an opportunity for the coalition to reflect on the past two and a half years in government and renew its commitment to the values of freedom, fairness and responsibility.

This paper sets out a number of specific proposals that we would like to see contained in the Autumn Statement. The intent and purpose of the paper is deliberately narrow.

We put forward practical ideas that would realise important savings and additional revenue for the Exchequer at a time of fiscal consolidation. However, we do not enter into the broader political debate over the government’s fiscal mandate or the appropriate ratio between tax increases and spending cuts.

Our proposals deliver tax reforms and marginal savings to the welfare budget, raising over £17 billion in total. We also call for supply side reforms that reduce red tape and boost economic growth.

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Select media coverage: ConservativeHome, New Statesman (Staggers), Public Finance

Bigger and quieter: the right answer for aviation

Cutting emissions coverTim Leunig
October 2012 [published in conjunction with Policy Exchange]

***Winner of the economic and financial category at Prospect Magazine's Think Tank of the Year Awards 2013*** 

'Bigger and quieter: the right answer for aviation' examines all the options for increasing airport capacity in the UK. It supports placing four runways immediately west of the current Heathrow site. This would double the existing capacity to 130 million passengers, cementing it as Europe's premier hub.

The report says that the UK needs a new hub airport located in the South East which has spare capacity to accommodate the likely increase in demand, especially to cope with the rise in middle class travellers from emerging markets.

It doesn't rule out the current proposal to build a third runway to the north of Heathrow, but claims that less people would be affected by aircraft noise if the four runways were instead located three kilometres to the west of Heathrow.

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Cutting emissions and making cars cheaper to run: a new approach to vehicle excise duty

Cutting emissions coverTim Leunig

October 2012

In this report, CentreForum argues that replacing vehicle excise duty with a one off emissions charge on new cars would cut 2.6 per cent off total UK carbon emissions after 15 years and lower running costs for motorists.

Under this revenue neutral scheme, the government would set an annual emissions "pivot point" equal to the emissions of the best performing one per cent of cars the previous year. Cars with emissions below the one per cent level would receive a subsidy. Cars above this level would attract an emissions charge.

The scheme will give car manufacturers a big incentive to produce more efficient vehicles. This in turn will lower costs for motorists, who over time will see a reduction in their fuel costs.

CentreForum has calculated that its scheme will cut fuel use by around 450 gallons over a 100,000 mile lifetime, saving motorists around £2,700.

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Select media coverage: Mail OnlineDaily TelegraphThe Sunday Times

"I welcome this report. It is exactly the sort of innovative thinking we have come to expect from CentreForum."
- Rt Hon Ed Davey MP, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change,

"This is a great proposal with strong rationale."
- Kate Barker, former chief economist at Ford Europe

"Worth consideration..."
- Roger Harrabin, BBC environment analyst

Tax justice: whatever your age

Tax justice coverTim Leunig with Adam Corlett
September 2012

'Tax justice: whatever your age' urges the coalition government to remove imbalances in the tax system between young and old. At present, the richest pensioners pay far less tax than people of working age on the same income.

CentreForum proposes that the government should phase out the tax free lump sum and end national insurance exemptions for affluent pensioners. This would make the tax system more balanced and save taxpayers over £9 billion a year. The savings could be used to raise the personal income tax allowance by £1,700, which is equivalent to a £330 a year tax cut.

The report shows that scrapping these tax breaks would only affect wealthy pensioners: two thirds of current pensioner households would be better off or unaffected by the proposed changes.

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"Young people are financing tax breaks for older, wealthier pensioners. We need a tax system that plays fair with all generations, one based on wealth and income, not on age."
- Angus Hanton, co-founder of the Intergenerational Foundation

Select media coverage: City AM, The Sun

Macroeconomic policy: too much autonomy and too little coordination

Macroeconomic policy report coverKate Barker
August 2012

This report by ex MPC member Kate Barker criticises government plans to create a Financial Policy Committee at the Bank of England. It questions whether it is right to delegate new powers to the Bank to manage the overall financial stability of the UK, arguing that this should remain the responsibility of the Chancellor.

The report says the government's current approach to monetary policy pays too little attention to what went wrong in the lead up to the financial crisis. It says that the MPC should be required to look harder at longer term underlying imbalances in the economy, which would imply a move from a point target for inflation to a range.

The report commends the coalition government for creating the Office for Budget Responsibility, suggesting it has increased the credibility of fiscal policy, but urges the Chancellor to rethink his approach to deficit reduction if "self defeating" austerity is to be avoided.

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Select media coverage: BBC Radio 4 Today, BBC Radio 5 LiveFinancial Times, Guardian, Daily MailTelegraph, The Times, Sunday Times

Click here to read Kate Barker's opinion article in the Financial Times.

A new lease of life: making leasehold fit for the 21st century

Dropping the bomb report coverThomas Brooks and Chris Paterson
August 2012

In this report CentreForum argues that the current system of leasehold tenure in which leasehold managing agents can operate without any form of regulation is not fit for purpose. The report shows that problems with management are growing, with a significant rise in disputes over inflated service charges and the operations of connected companies. It goes on to recommend how the system can be improved to benefit leaseholders and freeholders alike.

The report argues that a light touch, independent regulator for leasehold managing agents is essential if Britain's 2.5 million leasehold properties are to be given sufficient protection.

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Select media coverage: BBC Radio 4 Today, GuardianFinancial Times, Independent on Sunday, The Times

"Leaseholders need far greater protection. At present there is legal torture of vulnerable groups including elderly, frail people on limited incomes and often limited life expectancy. Regulation and reform are urgently required. Everyone committed to fair dealing will welcome CentreForum's proposals. Government and parliament must act."

- Sir Peter Bottomley, Conservative MP for Worthing West

"Reform of the leasehold system is well overdue. Leaseholders with private and public sector freeholders must be given a greater say in how their homes are managed. I support CentreForum's report, which offers innovative solutions to improve life for leaseholders."

- Rt Hon Simon Hughes, Liberal Democrat Deputy Leader and MP for Southwark and Bermondsey

"There is a real sense of growing momentum and cross party consensus on this issue. It is now time to revisit leasehold reform. These proposals would cost the government nothing and would at a stroke transform the lives of millions of leaseholders."

Barry Gardiner, Labour MP for Brent North

"I have seen relationships between leaseholders and the owners of their freehold that work well. But all too often I am shown instances where the balance of power in those relationships is dangerously out of kilter, delivering hopelessly poor value to leaseholders. I welcome CentreForum's report, which seeks to address this imbalance in the leasehold system."

Mark Field, Conservative MP for Westminster and the City

A demanding job: finding sustainable employment for Britain's youth

Hit the gas coverCallum Biggins
July 2012

Rising youth unemployment is one of the greatest challenges facing Britain today. Despite attempts by successive governments to get more young people into work, the crisis shows no sign of abating.

This report finds that reputed enemies of youth employment, such as immigration and the national minimum wage, have contributed little to recent rises in youth unemployment. The most prominent factor has been a drop in demand for the labour of young workers with low skills.

The report urges the government to focus on schemes which stimulate demand for young workers and are responsive to local labour markets. It points to the Netherlands where municipalities are given cash by central government to get all young people into work or further training within three months of leaving school.

It also points to Manchester where the city council's work and skills partnership has generated over a thousand extra jobs for young unemployed people. The Manchester scheme provides participants with 'real' jobs that reflect normal working conditions, while using demand side incentives that encourage businesses to take on more young workers. CentreForum believes that such schemes should be rolled out elsewhere in the country.

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Hit the gas: how to get the anaerobic digestion sector moving

Hit the gas coverThomas Brooks and Quentin Maxwell-Jackson
July 2012

With the EU Renewable Energy Directive's deadline looming, the UK needs to act fast to mitigate its energy dependence. If the UK is to meet the 15 per cent renewable energy sources target in 2020, it must revolutionise the way it produces energy and reduces its waste.

This report argues that an efficient and sustainable way to achieve these goals is through greater use of Anaerobic Digestion (AD). Producing renewable energy from waste and purpose grown crops, AD currently produces enough energy to power 300,000 homes, and the authors estimate that this could easily grow to 2.5 million households by 2020.

CentreForum hopes to contribute to this progress by first demonstrating the advantages of AD, outlining the various barriers to AD growth that currently exist in the UK, and finally proposing a systematic framework of incentives, education and government regulation to harness this potential.

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"The government is committed to promoting an increase in energy from waste schemes through anaerobic digestion. CentreForum's report offers some interesting ideas for how this increase can be achieved."

- Ed Davey, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change

Select media coverage: GuardianITV News

Britain needs a fourth generation industrial policy

Dropping the bomb report coverVicky Pryce
June 2012

Following the financial crisis and recession in the UK, it is more important than ever to examine the government’s role in stimulating long term growth.

In this report, Vicky Pryce describes three generations of post-war industrial policy, and draws on the strengths of these, as well as what was missing from them, to set out a coherent fourth generation approach that provides the best possible results for Britain.

The questions this report addresses include: Why do we need an industrial policy? In what areas does the UK have an international advantage and why? What can we learn from past successes, here and abroad? Should we favour manufacturing over services? Is the government doing enough?

Download the report.

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