A ‘fundamental review’ of business rates promised, but delayed

Meanwhile, the business rates holiday is to be extended.

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The government has committed itself to an overhaul of the business rates system – but this will have to be delayed due to overspend during the pandemic, as reported over the weekend:

Rishi Sunak is to delay the publication of the Treasury’s ‘fundamental review’ of business rates until Autumn. According to the Chancellor, postponing the report will allow him to make decisions when the economic uncertainty caused by the pandemic has receded.

In the meantime, Sunak is expected to use next month’s Budget to announce an extension of the year-long business rates holiday for retail, hospitality and leisure, which is currently due to expire on March 31.

In the run up to the general election in 2019, the Government promised a fundamental review of business rates and sought views on how the system currently works, issues to be addressed and ideas for change. The review is likely to include an online sales tax that would level the playing field between high street retailers and online players.

Chancellor to delay ‘fundamental’ review of business rates | bighospitality.co.uk

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Over the past fortnight, there have been growing calls across the media for action to be taken:

Bosses of leading stores urge Rishi Sunak to cut business rates permanently to save the High Street | Daily Mail Online

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With an overview out today from the RSN:

Calls to cut business rates to save the High Street – Rural Services Network

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It’s been a burning issue for some time, however:

Calls for a fair system of business rates – Vision Group for Sidmouth

The future of our high streets: of levelling up and council funding – Vision Group for Sidmouth

   
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