Last week saw George Osborne deliver his eighth Budget as Chancellor. With a lot of information and changes being announced, we thought we’d deliver some information on what we think are the top 5 most important posts to know about. Sugar Tax Osborne announced that a new sugar tax on the soft drinks industry is to be introduced in two years’ time. This is aimed at high-sugar content drinks, particularly fizzy drinks, which are popular among teenagers. The plan is to impose the tax on companies according to the volume of the sugar-sweetened drinks they produce or import. The tax will be delivered in two bands. The first will be for total sugar content above 5g per 100 millilitres. A second and higher band for the most sugary drinks with more than 8g per 100 millilitres will also be enforced. It has been suggested that this will be imposed at 18p and 24p per litre. It is expected that the higher rate of sugar tax will apply to full-strength Coca-Cola and Pepsi, Lucozade Energy and Irn-Bru, with the lower rate applying to drinks such as Dr Pepper, Fanta and Sprite. George Osborne expects this to raise an estimated £520 million a year, which will then be spent on increasing the funding for sport in primary schools. Lifetime ISA Millions of adults under 40 will now be able to apply for a new Individual Savings Account (ISA) to buy a home or a pension. Named the ‘Lifetime ISA’, this will be launched in April 2017, allowing people to put in up to £4,000 a year with the annual bonus of up to £1,000 paid by the government until the age of 50. Savers would be able to withdraw money from the ISA at any time, and not pay any tax on it, although the level of bonus may be affected. Additionally, from April 2017, all savers will be able to put up to £20,000 a year into ISAs, which is an increase from £15,240 currently. This means it will be possible to have both a standard and a Lifetime ISA, subject to the £20,000 limit. Low-paid workers Savings Scheme It was announced that millions of low-paid workers who put aside savings could receive a top-up of up to £1,200 over four years. This applies to employees on in-work benefits, who put aside £50 a month. The new scheme would allow them to get a bonus of 50% after two years, which would be worth up to £600. The scheme could then be continued for another two years with account holders receiving another £600. Schools to become Academies The chancellor announced that all schools must become academies by the year 2020, or have official plans to do so by the end of 2022. Currently 2,075 out of 3,381 secondary schools are academies, while 2,440 of 16,766 primary schools have academy status. Academies are independent, state-funded schools, which receive their funding directly from central government, rather than through a local authority. Academies used to be about improving failing schools but has radically changed to embrace all types of schools. The Region There were a few minor updates for the regions discussed in the budget, such as new rail lines and road improvements. Mr. Osborne also announced £700 million for flood defence schemes in cities including York and Leeds. Lastly, it was also announced that Hull would receive £13 million from the government for next year’s City of Culture celebrations. This will include money for the ongoing refurbishment of Hull New Theatre. Those are just some of the big announcements in the Budget 2016. As more information is published we will continue to keep you updated!