ACS: Urgent Action Needed in Budget to Mitigate Impact of 2018 Rates Increase

ACS has reiterated its calls to the Chancellor to make the business rates system fairer in his first Autumn Budget on November 22nd.

The call comes as the Retail Prices Index for September 2017, which determines the level of the business rates increase for the following year, has reached 3.9%, which is the highest September rate since 2011.  

ACS chief executive James Lowman said: “The Government committed to a proper review of the business rates system in its manifesto ahead of the Election. Thousands of local shops and other small business are still paying over the odds on their rates bills, and the looming increase of 3.9% in September means that urgent action is now needed to mitigate the impact.”

In its’ submission to the Treasury, ACS called for the following measures on business rates:

  • Restructure the rates system so that it incentivises investment
  • Clarify the timetable for 100% funding of rural rate relief and the change in indexation from RPI to CPI
  • Review the rating for properties not based on rental values such as petrol forecourts and free to use ATMs
  • Deliver more frequent revaluations of rates bills

At ACS’ annual Heart of the Community conference on Tuesday, High Streets Minister Jake Berry acknowledged that there have been problems with the allocation of rate relief by local councils, urging retailers to write to him directly if retailers didn’t receive a satisfactory answer about relief from their council.

In his speech to the conference, Labour Shadow Small Business Minister Bill Esterson said that Labour would immediately introduce annual revaluations if they were to be in Government, as well as excluding new investment from future revaluations.

ACS’ full submission to the Autumn Budget is available here:

This entry was posted by Chris on Wed, 18/10/2017 - 16:49