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Business Rates Local Discretionary Relief Scheme

Business Rates Local Discretionary Relief Scheme

In the Government’s Budget on the 8th March 2017 the Chancellor announced £300m of extra funding for local authorities to provide a discretionary relief (discount) scheme to Businesses.  This was in response to criticism over large increases following the national revaluation of Businesses coming into effect on 1st April 2017.  Ashfield’s allocation of this funding is £332,000, spread over 4 years, as shown in the table below.

Year

£000’s

Year 1

193

Year 2

94

Year 3

39

Year 4

6

 

The scheme is designed to assist businesses that have had an increase in their Business Rates payable, only businesses that had a charge in the 2016 financial year will qualify for any relief. The Scheme will remain in place for four years and a business will qualify for this relief where an occupied charge remains during the subsequent four financial years at the property. Therefore, any new business from 1 April 2017, or where a business changes address, will not qualify for the Local Discretionary Relief Scheme.

Ashfield’s Scheme for Year 1 are as follows:

  • Businesses who have had an increase in their Business Rates bill (as a result of the revaluation) in 2017/18 compared to 2016/17 may be eligible for a reduction.
  • The Scheme is targeted at Local Small and Medium sized Businesses with a Rateable Value of less than £140,000
  • Rules regarding State Aid will apply to all Businesses who receive funding under this scheme.
  • The discount will only be paid to businesses who have received an increase of 2% or more.
  • Qualifying Businesses will only have to pay 25% of the increase. The scheme will provide a 75% discount on the increase for Year 1.
  • The % increase will be measured after adjustments for all other relief schemes and discounts have been applied. This includes small business rates relief, transitional relief, charitable relief and other mandatory relief schemes. The Discretionary Relief does not apply to empty properties.
  • A “Cap” will apply to limit the maximum amount of Discretionary Relief that is awarded to a single business at £1,500.
  • The scheme allows for in year adjustments as a result of any change of circumstances. Therefore the discount can be adjusted.
  • Relief will be withdrawn (full or part) from any businesses who are successful in achieving an RV reduction by way of a formal appeal.
  • The Relief will not apply where the RV of a Business has increased due to a reassessment of the hereditament because of an increase in property size (expansion).
  • The following categories will be excluded from the scheme:-
    • Colleges / schools
    • Health centres / hospitals / surgeries
    • Local Authority Buildings
    • National companies

Ashfield’s Scheme for Year 2

  • The scheme will grant 50% of the Local Discretionary Relief granted in 2017/2018 to your account if the above criteria is still valid.

 Appeals

If you feel that you meet the eligibility criteria of this Discretionary Relief but have not received a reduction in your business rates via this relief, please contact the Business Rates team on 01623 457200 or email businessrates@ashfield.gov.uk

  • Should you be unhappy with the decision of the Business Rates officer, then an appeal must be made in writing and addressed to the Corporate Manager, Revenues and Customer Services who will consider the matter and provide a written response either upholding or refusing the appeal.

If you remain unhappy with the outcome of the Appeal then this will be referred to the Director for Resources & Transformation for final adjudication. This decision is final.