Business rates review (tranche two), DCN response
Districts are already seeing the impact of Covid-19 on business rates collection, and expect this to be significant and ongoing. In August the Institute for Fiscal Studies projects a real terms decline in retained business rates of 6.6% overall by 2024/25 against 2019/20 levels – and this was well before the introduction of local lockdowns, rising caseloads and before the impact is felt of the end of the furlough scheme.
Meanwhile districts face increasing demand, rising costs, and reduced income, only partially offset by government support. Against this backdrop, it is important that any changes in legislation or policy, including replacement of business rates with other taxes, should not diminish funding for local government. Government should consider carefully and properly how to respond to the new ways of working while ensuring that business continues to contribute to the local services that enable it to flourish.
Read our submission here