Councils in England predict a £400 million increase in Business Rates income next year

With the 2017 Rating Revaluation fast approaching, the government has predicted that Councils across England will make a record-breaking income of about £23.5 billion from business rates next year; an increase of about £400 million. The local government minister Marcus Jones attributed the increase to a rise in the number of new businesses across the country as figures show that there are 900,000 new businesses now than in 2010.

However, the Confederation of British Industry have warned that the burden of rates payments, coupled with the apprenticeship levy and the living wage, could cripple companies over the next five years.

The government has introduced more than £1 billion support for business rates bills in 2015 to 2016 and have confirmed that the doubling of Small Business Rate Relief will continue into 2016 to 2017. In total, councils already plan to hand out £3.2 billion to charities and business through mandatory and discretionary allowances/reliefs.

Under the current rating legislation, which was introduced in 2013, councils in England are allowed to keep 50% of business rates income they generate for themselves, paying the other 50% to the Treasury. From 2020, this will be changed to allow them keep 100% of the business rates they collect.

From 2020, councils will also have the power to abolish the uniform business rate (UBR), allowing them to cut rates to stimulate growth in their local areas and attract new businesses.

We would advise that with this constantly growing overhead, it is even more important to review you current rate liability. If you have not already considered a review or rate ‘check-up’ please revert to us.

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