• News
    The Telegraph

    Nicola Sturgeon under pressure to top up £500 NHS 'thank you' bonus after PM tax demand backfires

    Nicola Sturgeon is under pressure to top up a £500 "thank you" bonus for NHS and social care workers after her challenge to Boris Johnson not to tax the money backfired spectacularly. One of Scotland's most eminent economic think tanks said the best way for workers to receive the entire sum would be for the Scottish Government to pay a higher "gross" amount, which would reduce to £500 on payment of income tax. The Fraser of Allander Institute (FAI), based at Strathclyde University, said there would be no additional cost to the Scottish Government as it controls income tax on earnings north of the Border, so the additional money would be paid back to them. In her SNP conference speech on Monday, Ms Sturgeon challenged Mr Johnson to create a special tax exemption for the payment, saying the Covid "heroes" deserve to pocket "every penny". After the Treasury pointed out SNP ministers had the power to "gross up the payment", Ian Blackford, the SNP's Westminster leader, accused the Prime Minister of trying to "punish" NHS and care workers. But the FAI said the SNP's exemption demand "opens the possibility of endless future lobbying for tax-exempt bonuses" and "would gift higher rate taxpayers a significantly larger tax break than basic rate taxpayers." In a damning intervention, they said there was a "healthy dose of politics" in Ms Sturgeon's challenge to the Prime Minister and what the Scottish Government "really wanted" was an example of the devolved tax powers "apparently not working."

  • News
    Yahoo News UK

    Council with one of lowest COVID infection rates legally challenges government over ‘irrational’ Tier 3 lockdown

    Stratford-on-Avon District Council has urged the government to place it in Tier 1 or 2.

  • Politics
    The Independent

    Trump to boycott Biden’s inauguration and won’t even invite him for White House visit - report

    Outgoing president will not even invite successor to White House

  • Entertainment
    Digital Spy

    13 Emmerdale spoilers for next week

    What's next in the village?

  • Business
    The Telegraph

    Pressure mounts on Greens to reveal how much they are owed by Arcadia

    Sir Philip Green is under mounting pressure to lay out his financial exposure from the collapse of Arcadia as demands grow for the tycoon to plug a black hole in its pension scheme. Accounting experts and MPs called for Sir Philip to set out details of any loans he may be due to recover from the failed retailer as it goes through administration - and to use his personal wealth to help staff who face a major blow to their retirement income. Topshop owner Arcadia's pension fund has an estimated shortfall of £350m, meaning that now the company has collapsed its members are likely to be placed into the Pension Protection Fund lifeboat. As a result, as many as 10,000 savers will lose up to 20pc of their expected retirement income. Labour MP Lucy Powell, shadow minister for business and consumers, said: "He has a significant personal wealth of his own and he should step in and do the right thing.” Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, said: “Having extracted so much wealth from Arcadia, “[Sir] Philip and [Lady] Tina Green owe a moral debt to its workers, and should have to meet the cost of the pension shortfall”. Arcadia failed earlier this week, putting 13,000 jobs at risk. Deloitte has been appointed administrator and will keep stores open while it seeks a buyer.

  • News
    The Independent

    Egypt arrests model who posed at Saqqara necropolis

    Detention comes amid crackdown on online self-expression

  • Celebrity

    Legendary Celebrities Who Have Famous Grandkids

    Hollywood is a family affair for these talented offspring of iconic elders