Ellesmere Port & Neston MP Justin Madders is demanding that the Chancellor introduces measures to assist businesses effected by huge increases in Business Rates in this week’s Budget.
The Business Rates Revaluation is due to come into effect on 1 April and while a number of businesses will be paying the same of less, a number of local businesses have been landed with extremely large increases, which could threaten their future viability. Justin has joined MPs from across the country in calling for the Chancellor to step in and offer emergency relief ease the pressure on those impacted when he presents his Budget.
Concern has also been raised about the disproportionate impact of the changes to Rates, which will see the average small shop hit by an extra £3,663 in rates over the next 5 years, while many large online retailers like Amazon will see rates cut for their warehouse facilities. The Big 4 superstores - Tesco, Asda, Sainsburys and Morrisons - will see a 5.9% reduction in Rateable Value, while online retailer, ASOS, will see their rates bill fall from £1.17million to £1.14million, despite reporting UK retail sales growth of 18%.
Ahead of the budget, Labour is proposing a Five Point Plan on Business Rates:
1. Set up an emergency transitional relief fund for businesses facing “cliff edge” increases in their rates, and revise the appeals process to ensure businesses get a swift and fair hearing.
2. Bring forward CPI indexation so that businesses aren’t paying more because of how inflation is measured.
3. Exclude new investment in plant and machinery from future business rates valuation.
4. Introduce more regular valuations in law to stop businesses facing periodic, unmanageable hikes.
5. Fundamental reform of the business rates system to ease the burden on traditional high streets and town centres in the age of online shopping; support the traditional fabric of our communities, including community pubs and incentivising free cash machines; and create a fairer system of business taxation.
Commenting, Justin Madders MP said:
“At a time when we have high levels of vacancies on the high street in both Ellesmere Port and Neston, it is shocking that the Government is planning to hike the Rates of many small businesses. I am deeply concerned that these changes could lead to further closures and relocations.
“I’ve been approached by businesses facing 30 to 40% increases which is clearly putting them in danger going forward.
“From delaying the revaluation to their failure to put adequate transitional arrangements in place, the Government have mishandled this whole process. I am calling on the Chancellor to step in and save our local businesses by delivering an emergency package in this week’s Budget.”