Anna Turley, Labour MP for Redcar, has today (11th March 2016) slammed the Government’s decision to remove rates relief from retail properties, describing it as a ‘kick in the teeth’ for our high streets.
Occupied retail properties with a rateable value of up to £50,000 were eligible for £1000 of rates relief in 2014/15 and £1500 in 2015/16.
George Osborne has now withdrawn this relief meaning businesses will be paying more in business rates this year.
“This week small and medium sized businesses are receiving rates bills for the coming year and are shocked to find that they are paying significantly more.
It is a kick in the teeth for our struggling high streets and local businesses who are working so hard to recover from the recent shocks in the local economy.
The job losses at the steelworks, and the knock on effects, have already taken money out of the local economy as people are struggling to make ends meet. The removal of this relief compounds the pressure at a time when our local businesses need more support to grow. Small businesses are now the life-blood of our economy.
In the Budget next week the Government have an opportunity to correct this mistake and help our small businesses to thrive.”