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Business Rate: Update on the Spring Budget 2017

Business Rate: Update on the Spring Budget 2017

The Government made three important announcements on Business Rate in the Spring 2017; these were:-

  • Extended relief for Small Business
  • Relief for Pubs
  • Support for ratepayers who face the steepest increases in rate bills as a result of the 2017 revaluation

The details of each relief are summarised below:-

Extended relief for Small Business

The scheme will be available to those ratepayers facing large increases as a result of the loss of small business or rural rate relief. It will help those ratepayers who as a result of the change in rateable at the revaluation are losing some or all of their small business or rural rate relief and, as a result, are facing large increases in their bills.

To support these ratepayers, the scheme will ensure that the increase per year in the bills for these ratepayers is limited to the greater of:-

  1. A cash value of £600 per year (£50 per month). The cash minimum increase ensures that those ratepayers currently paying nothing or very small amounts are brought in to paying something; or
  2. The matching cap on increases for small properties in the transitional relief scheme.

Officers at North Kesteven District Council are currently undertaken work to ascertain the number of ratepayers that will be entitled to relief under this scheme. Those ratepayers will be contacted before the 31st March 2017 and advised on the relief they are to be awarded from the 1st April 2017.

Relief for Pubs

The scheme will provide a new relief for pubs that have a rateable value of below £100,000. Under the scheme, eligible pubs will receive a £1,000 discount on their rate bill in 2017/18. The Government plans to publish a consultation on the operation of the scheme shortly.

Officers at North Kesteven District Council are currently undertaken work to ascertain the number of ratepayers that will be entitled to relief under this scheme. As soon as the Government has published their consultation and confirmed how the scheme is to operate, those ratepayers who will benefit from the scheme will be contacted. Until such time, the business rate remains due and payable as currently demanded.

Support for ratepayers who face the steepest increases in rate bills as a result of the 2017 revaluation.

The scheme will enable local authorities to support ratepayers that face the steepest increases in their rate bills as a result of the 2017 revaluation. The scheme will commence in 2017/18 and last for four years. The Government’s intention is for every local authority to be provided with a share of a £300m discretionary fund. The Government has published a consultation on the operation of the scheme and details of how the scheme will operate are expected later in the year.

At this time, officers at North Kesteven District Council are not aware of its allocation of the discretionary fund or how the scheme itself will operate. Once the details are known, steps will be taken to publicise the scheme together with the criteria for awarding relief. Until such time, the business rate remains due and payable as currently demanded.

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