Forum welcomes greater transparency in the business rates process
The Forum welcomes the government’s new online service which will allow customers to provide information and track progress of their check or challenge to business rates.
The new system was confirmed by secretary of state Greg Clark, who said that businesses will benefit from a quicker and more efficient service when checking and challenging their business rates bills.
It is one of a series of reforms to business rates that are designed to improve value for money, including a consultation on the appeals process and on allocating the money raised to local authorities to fund local improvements.
In 2013 the Forum’s members highlighted this as an issue that needed to be resolved – 50% wanted the system made more transparent and 45% wanted the appeals process simplified. All the other requests that received widespread support from Forum members have since been adopted.
Ian Cass, managing director of the Forum of Private Business, said:
“Anything that speeds up a business’s ability to check on the progress of their case or challenge it, is a welcome simplification in the area of red tape and regulation, which is a constant issue for our members. However for the last few years the level of business rates has been the biggest perceived barrier to growth for our members with many losing out because of the lack of a revaluation in 2015.
“We would like to see the government accelerate its deregulation programme, including an overall review of the tax system as we have set out in our post-Brexit plan.”