Press Releases

ACS Calls for Urgent Reform of Business Rates ahead of 2017 Budget

ACS (the Association of Convenience Stores) has called on the Government to implement a series of measures on business rates, employment costs and duty rates to help local shops and other small businesses.

In its submission ahead of the Chancellor’s first Autumn Budget on 22nd November, ACS has reiterated its calls for an overhaul of the business rates system, with urgent attention required to allow businesses to appeal their rates.

The submission calls for:

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Local Government Minister Intervenes to Speed up Allocation of Rate Relief

ACS has welcomed Local Government Minister Marcus Jones’ intervention to speed up the process of rebilling businesses that are waiting for rate relief.

In a Commons statement, he said: “The Government has been consistently clear that it expects local authorities to make rapid progress in helping business by implementing these relief schemes.

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ACS to Submit Evidence to Inquiry on Bottle Recycling

The Environmental Audit Committee has relaunched its inquiry into disposable coffee cups and plastic bottles, looking at ways to reduce the level of waste created by those products. 

ACS has reiterated its concerns about a possible deposit return scheme for bottles and cans, outlining the problems that a scheme would cause for retailers and urging the Government to focus on effective measures to increase recycling rates.

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Lords Raise Concerns over ‘Excessive’ Check, Challenge, Appeal Requirements

ACS has welcomed comments from the Earl of Lytton in a House of Lords debate on the government’s Check, Challenge, Appeal system for business rates appeals.

During the debate, the Earl raised concerns about the processes that businesses had to go through just to access the check, challenge, appeal system, suggesting that they were ‘excessive and intrusive’.

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High Streets Minister Confirmed for Heart of the Community 2017

ACS is delighted to announce that High Streets Minister Jake Berry MP will address retailers at the 2017 Heart of the Community Conference in October.

Jake Berry was appointed Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department of Communities and Local Government on 14th June after retaining his Rossendale and Darwen seat in the 2017 General Election. His responsibilities include local growth policies, Local Enterprise Partnerships, community rights and high streets.

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Jobs Fall in Convenience Store Sector as Increasing Costs Take their Toll

The number of jobs in the UK convenience store sector has fallen for the second consecutive year as retailers are forced to adapt to cost increases in their businesses.

The 2017 Local Shop Report, released today, shows that there are now just over 370,000 jobs in the convenience sector – a reduction on both last year’s total of 390,000 and 2015’s total of 407,000.

Key findings from this year’s report include:

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SGF and ACS: Local Shops Would Be Damaged By Bottle Return Scheme

Following the announcement by the First Minister that the SNP administration will press ahead with introducing a bottle return scheme, retail representatives have warned that the scheme will either impose costs on local retailers if they are part of the scheme, or drive customers to large shops if smaller stores are exempt.

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Welsh Cross Party Group Launches Supporting Entrepreneurship Inquiry

The Cross-Party Group on Small Shops has today launched a new Inquiry on how to support entrepreneurs trading on high streets, shopping parades and in rural locations throughout Wales.

The Supporting Entrepreneurship Inquiry will seek evidence on the breadth and depth of the contribution that different types of entrepreneur make to the Welsh economy, looking at how to support these entrepreneurs to grow, invest and secure their long-term future.

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Government Responds to Green Paper on Corporate Governance Reform

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has published a response to its Green Paper on improving corporate governance.

The response takes into account the views expressed in submissions to the Green Paper consultation, making further recommendations on the reforms to corporate governance that could be extended to large private companies as well as public companies. The main recommendations from the Government response include:

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Thousands of Businesses Still Waiting for Relief after Revaluation

Businesses waiting for rate relief after the 2017 revaluation should start receiving updated bills over the next few weeks after the Government set a deadline on software providers to update their platforms and help local councils generate the new bills.

The deadline of 21 August set by Local Government Minister Marcus Jones so that new bills can be issued to businesses that are due relief has now passed.

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