Business Rates (1)

Meeting: 
MQT on 2016-10-19
Session date: 
October 19, 2016
Reference: 
2016/3835
Question By: 
Tony Devenish
Organisation: 
GLA Conservatives
Asked Of: 
The Mayor

Question

Research suggests that business rates are the third largest out-going for most businesses, including SMEs, after rent and salaries. What specific actions do you propose to take to help businesses, especially in relation to business rates?

Answer

Answer for Business Rates (1)

Answer for Business Rates (1)

Answered By: 
The Mayor

Business rates levels are currently determined by central government and as Mayor, I have limited ability to influence tax rates or reliefs policies with the exception of the Crossrail business rate supplement (BRS).

Given the £55,000 rateable value threshold for the BRS - which I expect to increase in 2017-18 to reflect the impact of the 2017 revaluation - the vast majority of SMEs in London are exempt from paying this anyway. I am however joining business groups to lobby the government to ensure that increases in business rates bills arising from the 2017 revaluation are phased in more slowly.

Once London boroughs and the GLA gain some limited additional control over setting business rates from 2019-20, we will be able to take steps to improve the fairness of the tax - including reviewing the thresholds below which small businesses are exempt from paying business rates as these are the same in London as in the rest of England.

With my Deputy Mayor for Business, Rajesh Agrawal, the GLA is also taking a number of initiatives to support SMEs in London in addition to lobbying Government on business rates.