MP launches Bill to scrap business rates
Business rates should be abolished in a bid to save high street shops, an MP has claimed.
Our new beginning is here – let’s not make a meal of it
There are some major hurdles ahead, says Heather Jameson. 'Government’s quick fixes – to raise council tax precepts and push councils towards commercialism – now cause more problems than they solve', she adds.
The answers cannot wait for long
If local government is to play the vital role required in the recovery of places and communities, it will need some clarity and medium-term certainty about the underpinning finance regime, says John O'Brien of London Councils.
Uncertainty over rates rebate risk
More uncertainty has been heaped on councils after it emerged they could be hit by a £481m business rates rebate for the office sector.
The devil is in the detail
Tracie Langley says that while the additional Spending Review cash helps, ‘it doesn’t help the base budget position we were already managing’.
A mixed bag for councils
While Sir Bob Neill says there was much in the Spending Review to applaud, ‘what’s ultimately needed is a complete repair job of local government finance’.
There’s not enough votes in funding councils
'Whatever the finance settlement brings, it will not be enough', says Heather Jameson. 'Councils will cope as they always do – or most will – and there is another year to make the case for local services, while the Government hopes it all goes away.'
More cash, but not enough
With its £5.5bn extra funding for local government next year the Spending Review may have delivered more than expected – though this won’t be enough to reverse the cuts since 2010. Heather Jameson reports.
Online sales tax backed by London
The local government sector in the capital has advocated the introduction of an online sales tax (OST).
Think tank proposes 10-point plan to reform business rates
The valuation of business rates should be devolved to local government, under proposals published by the Centre for Cities.
Think tank calls for rates reform
Council tax and business rates should be reformed as part of a major overhaul of the UK’s tax system says a new study from the free market think-tank the Centre for Policy Studies.
Central government needs to stand back
Dr Jonathan Carr-West asks if anyone has any sense of a sustained strategic focus on tackling the pandemic from government, and he feels only local government can manage the alignment of social, environmental and economic recovery that we need.
Future Forum: Business rates retention is doomed
Moves to fund local government using the proceeds from business rates are ‘doomed,’ according to a financial expert.
Counting the hidden costs of COVID-19
There are a host of hidden costs from COVID-19 that will creep out of the woodwork over time to impact local government, says Chris Buss, leading to a fundamental shift in the way services will be delivered in the future.
Spending Review will 'fail to offer long-term view' for sector
This year’s Spending Review will fail to offer a long-term view for local government, The MJ understands.
How councils can reshape the future of high streets
Local authorities—many of whom are landlords — now have a unique opportunity to regenerate and transform our high streets for the future, say Andrew Knowles and Leena Gillespie.
The business rates system needs to go
Today is the deadline for the call for evidence for the Treasury’s review of business rates. Rather than tinkering with the current system, it needs to go, writes Cllr Sir Stephen Houghton.
Before reorganisation we need a clear view of the sector's core purpose
How local government 'can sensibly be reorganised without a clear view of its core purpose (will adult social care services be in or out?) or funding mechanisms' is baffling Abdool Kara.
Retail chiefs call for more rate relief as Sunak considers tax hikes
Retail chiefs have urged Chancellor Rishi Sunak to extend business rate relief just as he plans tax rises to reduce the £2 trillion hole in the public finances.
Taxing questions on a flawed system
The Treasury announced a call for evidence on business rates. Martin Ford speaks to experts about the system’s flaws, and whether the Government can enact radical change in a time of coronavirus and Brexit.