Chief secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander has warned against “fiscal nimbyism” in response to coalition MPs who favour fiscal restraint but oppose cuts to their own departments.
Liberal Democrat MP Alexander, who is charged with finding a further £10bn in spending cuts, told the FT the Liberal Democrats feel welfare cuts have gone far enough and it is departmental budgets which need to be cut next.
Alexander told the newspaper: “We cannot have any fiscal nimbyism. Just because you take a strong position in favour of deficit reduction does not mean that you can then protect your own spending.”
In December, Alexander ruled out any further cuts to to pension tax relief, following Chancellor George Osborne’s £10,000 cut the annual tax-free allowance, from £50,000 to £40,000. The lifetime allowance was also cut from £1.5m to £1.25m.
The spending review is the last before the next general election and is expected to be completed by the end of June, and implemented in the financial year starting April 2015.