The Government has said there are plans to reform the system so that the amount companies pay in business rates could be recalculated more regularly.
In it’s current form the system is fairly rigid and there have been calls to make it more flexible. This is to enable the Government to keep it more in line with developments in the British economy. At the moment, the rateable value of a property is set every five years.
Last year’s Autumn Statement, given by Chancellor George Osborne, promised to bring in business rate reform coupled with £1.1bn of measures to ease pressure created by the tax.
On Thursday the Government’s “terms of reference” for the review were published. David Gauke, the Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, said the review “will consider the way in which the business rates system in England is administered by the Valuation Office Agency and local authorities, with a view to strengthening its responsiveness to changes in property values and its cimplicity and transparency to business ratepayers”.
This will include changes to the valuation methods, the frequency of the revaluations, and which organisations are eligible for relief and exemptions.
The Business Secretary, Vince Cable, has also called for changes and said that he welcomes “this review as a step towards meeting the concerns of small business.”
He added: “I am particularly pleased that the review will look at frequency of valuations as it is the out of date property valuations that is a real problem.”