Scottish think tank calls for basic income to replace benefits

From The Herald Scotland

Work-related benefits should be scrapped and replaced by a basic income paid to everyone, a think tank has recommended.

In a report published today, Reform Scotland argues a "Basic Income Guarantee" would end the so-called welfare trap which can discourage people in receipt of benefits from taking a jobs.

The independent think tank also calls the distinction between income tax and National Insurance to end and for the creation of a new department - either UK-wide or devolved - to administer tax and welfare payments, merging functions performed by HM Revenue and Customs and the Department for Work and Pensions. 

Under the plan, the basic income would be paid to everyone but only earnings above it would be taxed, in order to make work pay.

Reform Scotland called for a debate on the level the basic income guarantee should be set at and how much it should cost the state. 

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