Business Rates (2)

Meeting: 
MQT on 2016-10-19
Session date: 
October 19, 2016
Reference: 
2016/3836
Question By: 
Tony Devenish
Organisation: 
GLA Conservatives
Asked Of: 
The Mayor

Question

What assistance are you able to offer, or do you propose to offer, to SMEs in London facing the sometimes lengthy and complex business rates appeal process?

Answer

Answer for Business Rates (2)

Answer for Business Rates (2)

Answered By: 
The Mayor

There are over 65,000 outstanding business rates appeals in London which remains unresolved - proportionately the largest backlog of any English region. The GLA and London Councils have been lobbying the Government to ensure the Valuation Office Agency clears these as a matter of urgency.

A new appeals system is being introduced from next April by the Government and it is essential that this is made as accessible to SMEs so that they can challenge their valuations. I am urging the Government to raise the thresholds for small business rate relief in the capital so that as many SMEs as possible are removed from paying business rates entirely.

Fundamentally however we will not be able to make the fundamental reforms to business rates needed - including appeals - until responsibility for the administration of the tax is devolved by HM Treasury to London government. This would include creating a separate Valuation Office for London accountable to the Mayor and London boroughs.