CAMRA Achieves Its Goal of a Debate in Parliament
By Sam Hargreaves.
Thursday 1st November marks an important step in the campaign to scrap the beer duty escalator. In response to reaching 100,000 signatures on the e-petition a Parliamentary debate has now been tabled calling on Government to review their damaging beer tax regime.
Gaining 100,000 signatures is a great campaigning tool to highlight the strength of feeling against beer tax increasing by 42% since 2008 but it also results in a response by the Government and the potential for a Parliamentary debate.
The length and type of debate is not guarenteed and is decided by the Backbench Business Committee. Thanks to a group of twenty MPs flooding the Committee room led by Andrew Griffiths MP and Greg Mulholland MP the desire for a decent length debate was conveyed.
At one point a member of the committee asked ‘are you all here for beer?' which was answered with a resounding yes.
After hours of deliberation, the committee awarded three hours of debate in the House of Commons, on 1st November, on the following motion:
"That this House welcomes the essential role of brewing and pubs to the UK's economy in providing one million jobs; notes the 42 per cent increase in beer duty since 2008 and Treasury forecasts that have shown that there will be no additional revenue generated from beer duty despite planned increases over the next two years; is therefore concerned about the effectiveness of this policy in tackling the Budget deficit, its impact on valued community pubs and the continued affordability of beer in pubs; and therefore urges the Government to support Britain's beer and pub sector by conducting a thorough review of the economic and social impact of the beer duty escalator, to report back before the 2013 Budget."
As ever CAMRA isn't going to rest on its laurels and we intend to keep campaigning until we have had the escalator abolished.
Please email your MP to ask them to attend the debate and vote in favour of the motion. Please take a few minutes and use our campaign site to help with your email: bit.ly/beertaxdebate