TOO many York families, businesses and essential services have been left facing further hardship by today's Budget, says the city's MP.

Rachael Maskell, MP for York Central, said the announcements failed to set out a transformative economic plan, and left too many people in York in need of further help.

The furlough scheme extension, VAT reductions and business rates relief will offer businesses respite, she acknowledged.

However, the budget did not include support for more than two million still unable to access income support schemes, nor any promises to assist businesses who will soon face coronavirus loan repayments.

The MP was also disappointed at the lack of commitment to invest in the BioYorkshire project, despite its huge economic and environmental potential.

“Those on Universal Credit have been given a stay of execution for just six months where Labour would guarantee that £20 a week and reform the social security system.

"And when many families are straining to make ends meet, council tax is going up and people are being pushed into another decade of hardship, carrying the cost of a failed economy. When the tax rises come we have also learnt that they will hit our lowest earners hardest.

“He has presented businesses with a short term bridge to get us through the next phase, but this still leaves many of the excluded with no compensation for a lost year of support and an estimated 2.4m sole directors of companies with no support at all.

"There was nothing to allay the fears of businesses faced with paying off large debts when they are still in the middle of a crisis.

"Despite the extremely serious and significant climate emergency we are facing, the Green Infrastructure Bank will see just £12bn of investment when we must pivot the whole of the economy towards climate mitigation. There was no commitment to investment in the incredibly economically and environmentally important BioYorkshire project, which would bring 4,000 new jobs to our economy.

“In the detail of the budget’s ‘Red Book’ we also learnt of £4bn of departmental cuts, including to our NHS, in a year where Covid19 has stretched the health service beyond its limits, and yet, there was not a mention of health or social care and the investment they urgently need in the months and years to come.”