Autumn Statement 1) Osborne intends to retreat on tax credits

OSBORNE scissors‘George Osborne is set to offer big concessions on tax credits after his original plan for £4.4 billion in cuts was blocked by the House of Lords. The chancellor is expected to reduce losses for families from £1,300 to about £300 in a bid to appease more than two dozen Tory rebels. Mr Osborne will insist his “destination” on tax credits remains the same — sticking to a plan to dramatically reduce the overall bill for Gordon Brown’s reform. However, the level of savings in this parliament could fall by as much as half, with raids on housing benefit to make up the shortfall.’ – The Times (£)

  • Backbenchers will watch him closely – The Sun (£)
  • Be straight with us, George – Daily Mail Leader
  • Cuts cannot be avoided – The Sun Says (£)
  • Infrastructure guarantee scheme falls short – FT
  • Dozens of HS2 executives earn more than the Prime Minister – Daily Telegraph
  • Top-up funding for Network Rail – The Guardian

>Today: Liam Fox MP on Comment: A debased currency. Eroded earnings. Devalued savings. Today, the Chancellor must tackle this other security threat.

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: Tomorrow, Osborne must pass the surplus test

Autumn Statement 2) Billions of pounds for new homes

‘Housebuilders will today be handed billions of pounds of taxpayers’ money by George Osborne to provide subsidised homes for first-time buyers. The Chancellor will say that, to tackle a ‘crisis of home ownership’, 200,000 new homes will be made available to the under 40s at a 20 per cent discount. Plans to build the starter homes have been announced by the Government at least twice before, including on the election stump. But Mr Osborne will say that, to make the scheme work on a large scale, he is now giving private sector housebuilders £2.3billion.’ – Daily Mail

>Yesterday: To The Point: The grand context for tomorrow’s Spending Review

Autumn Statement 3) Devolving money must mean devolving policy control, says Porter

growth flag‘Lord Porter, chairman of the Local Government Association, backed devolution but warned that national politicians will have to accept less control over policymaking.You can’t give me a bunch of responsibilities and then tell me how you want them done and then tell me I’ve got less money to do it,” he said. “If government really wants to do better for less, the only way is doing it locally.” In the health service, passing down power to a local level would mean an end to national standards, he added, “because it won’t be a national service, it will be a range of local services” with priorities being set at a local level.’ – FT

  • Osborne to press mobile firms to cut switching times – The Sun (£)
  • What other changes might the Chancellor make? – Daily Mail
  • Ten things to look out for – FT
  • We’re glad the Government is boosting the World Service – The Times Leader (£)

>Yesterday: Jonathan Carr-West on Local Government: Prime Minister Osborne, the curator of local economies, delivers in 2025

Syria 1) One terror suspect is arrested every day in the UK

‘A jihadi suspect is arrested each day in a bid to prevent a Paris-style attack here, Britain’s top anti-terror cop revealed yesterday. It came as a review of security at smaller airports was being launched by the Government, amid fears they are a weak spot in the war against IS. The Met’s Assistant Commissioner for Special Operations Mark Rowley said there were “several thousand” homegrown terror suspects in the UK.’ – The Sun (£)

  • Clamp down on known extremists – The Sun Says (£)
  • ISIS supporters filmed propagandising in East London – The Sun (£)
  • Four steps to defeat them - Roger Boyes, The Times (£)
  • Anger as Ashdown suggests Tories are biased by Gulf money – Daily Mail
  • Royal Navy flagship to be decommissioned straight after refit – Daily Mail
  • Whitehall isn’t equipped to face this threat – Jonathan Shaw, FT

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