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Last Updated: Friday, 22 September 2006, 10:02 GMT 11:02 UK
South: Attractive tax..?
Ian Paul
Ian Paul
The Politics Show, BBC South

Council Tax demand
Could Lib Dem proposals bring an end to Council Tax..?

Last week, the Liberal Democrats enjoyed the bracing (very, very bracing most of the time) sea air in Brighton.

The centrepiece of the conference was their plan to do away with their 50p top rate of tax policy and replace it with environmental taxes.

Will that be a more attractive showcase policy?

The South's MPs were well to the fore of the argument, with Chris Huhne, (Eastleigh), taking point to get the policy through, and Dr Evan Harris, (Oxford West & Abingdon), mounting a rearguard action which ultimately failed.

So just 48 hours after Tuesday's vote, Politics Show South was out with the Liberal Democrats in Oxford East as they canvassed for a council by-election.

Would the new tax policy go down well on the doorstep, or be just a little too complicated?

You can find out on the Show on Sunday.

Calling Einstein daft?

Keith Mitchell
Cllr Keith Mitchell is far from convinced

The Lib Dems are certainly no strangers to coming up with different kinds of tax.

Their councillors, in the Vale of White Horse, are very gung-ho for something called Land Value Tax or LVT - a tax based on the value of each plot of land but not including the buildings on it.

It could, they reckon, not only replace council tax and business rates, but also work out cheaper for many tax payers.

And, they claim, it makes it harder for developers to leave land idle that could be used for housing.

It is a policy that was supported by such diverse people as Winston Churchill, Albert Einstein and Milton Friedman.

But not by Keith Mitchell, leader of Oxfordshire County Council.

He describes it as 'this daft idea': "This is an urban tax that is in danger of being applied across the country. Thank God the Liberals won't form a government in the next century as they haven't in the last so we're talking theoretically here rather than in reality."

Politics on Sea

Remember to check out the Politics Show South team's special Conference Reports.

We will be bringing you all sorts of snippets of information, gossip and politicking - you can see what we made of the Lib Dems, and next week we will be doing our fly-on-the-wall act at the Labour conference.

We want you to join in the discussion by sending us your views on what we have written, or what you think of what has been happening on stage at the conferences.

20:20 vision

Steel band players
And with 20/20 vision comes 20/20 sound...

If you were watching the politics show carefully before the summer, you may remember our 20:20 vision series of films - young people presenting their own ideas about how they would like to see the world in 2020.

We would love to give more people a chance to make their own films over the coming months,

So if you have strong views about the future of your community and fancy getting them off your chest, why not drop us an e-mail.

Or you could write to us at Politics Show, BBC South, Havelock Road, Southampton SO14 7PU.

This week's film comes from RASPO, the Reading All Steel Percussion Orchestra.

They are Reading's most successful steel band for youngsters from 7 to 25 - and in amongst rehearsing some of their favourite numbers they will be telling us how they want Reading to develop in the next two decades.

Meanwhile, join Peter Henley on the Politics Show on Sunday 24 September at 12:00 BST on BBC One.

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SEE ALSO
Lib Dem conference at-a-glance
20 Sep 06 |  UK Politics
Stephen predicts Lib Dem victory
19 Sep 06 |  Scotland
South
11 Sep 05 |  England

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