Clause 69 of the Localism Act amended section 47 of the Local Government Finance Act 1988 to allow local Billing Authorities to fund their own local discounts. Starting from 1st April, authorities are now able to grant business rates discounts entirely as they see fit within the limits of the primary legislation and European rules on state aid. These new powers can be used to encourage new businesses and investment, as well as to support local shops or community services.
Although, the power to grant local discounts rests with Billing Authorities, it is anticipated that they will work closely with County Councils on the use of the power.
In practice, Howard Elliott. Head of bdt’ Rating Department, believes that such discounts are likely to be relatively thin on the ground amid the current trying economic circumstances. He says, “it will be very interesting to see which Local Authorities step up to the plate on this one and actually deliver meaningful discounts”.
Should you require any further information, please do not hesitate to contact Howard Elliott.
Tel: 01256 840777
Mobile: 07957 464759