Press Releases

Budget Submission 2014: Chancellor Urged to Stamp Out Duty Fraud

ACS has called on the Chancellor to shut down the black market in alcohol and tobacco in its submission ahead of the 2014 Budget.

ACS Chief Executive James Lowman said: “The level of alcohol and tobacco duty fraud in the UK needs to be addressed immediately through adequate enforcement on both the local and national level. By increasing in alcohol and tobacco duty, the Chancellor will only drive customers away from legitimate retail and toward the illicit trade.

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Local Shops Welcome Audit Committee Recommendations on Carrier Bags

ACS has welcomed calls from the Environmental Audit Committee to introduce carrier bag charging in England for all businesses.

In a report due to be published on Thursday, the Committee will recommend that any charge brought in for England should mirror that which is already in place for Wales, as it is simple and clear for customers. This would mean that a charging scheme would be introduced for all businesses in England, with proceeds from the charge going to charitable causes.

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Local Shops Welcome £1,000 Rates Discount

 Local shops have welcomed the announcement that 300,000 retail businesses will be eligible for a rates discount of £1000.

Guidance for local authorities published today spells out which types of retail businesses, this includes standalone convenience stores, post offices and petrol forecourts will be entitled to the new discount, if they are below the rateable value threshold.

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Minister Confirmed for Crime Prevention Seminar

Crime Prevention Minister Norman Baker has been confirmed to speak at the February ACS Crime Prevention Seminar.

The Seminar, which takes place on Tuesday February 25th at Methodist Central Hall in London, will give retailers the opportunity to put their question to the Minister of State for Crime Prevention and Chair of the National Retail Crime Steering Group on the Government’s policy to crack down on crime against local shops.

Other speakers at the seminar include:

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Local Shops Herald Tobacco Proxy Sales Breakthrough

ACS has strongly welcomed plans to make it illegal to buy tobacco for a person under the age of 18.

This proposed change in the law is a breakthrough for a long running campaign by ACS to stamp out a loophole that undermines the fight to prevent young people from buying tobacco.

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Ministers Must Not Grow Complacent over Crime Figures

ACS has responded to the publication of the Crime Survey of England and Wales (CSEW), urging Ministers not to be complacent over the level of crime experienced by shopkeepers.

The survey claims that overall crime levels fell by 10% in the year to September 2013, with a 13% fall in violent crime in the same period.

Speaking on the publication of the results, Crime Prevention Minister Norman Baker said: “"England and Wales are safer than they have been for decades with crime now at its lowest level since the survey began in 1981.”

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No More Excuses for One Year Backbilling Limit

ACS has written to Ofgem, calling for all energy suppliers limit their backbills to 12 months.

In December, Ofgem published the results of an investigation into backbilling cases between 2012 and 2013, revealing that over the course of 12 months there had been over 116,000 cases of backbills reported by suppliers.

While Ofgem note that the majority of the bills are small, there is still a small minority which are worth over £20,000 and/or last over five years.

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