Urgent Business Rates Update

February 23, 2017

Following a statement by the Finance Secretary, Derek Mackay, on Tuesday it has been confirmed that a Scotland-wide business rates relief scheme will be available to hospitality operators and renewable companies.  In addition, a localised package will be made available to over 1,000 offices in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire.  Whilst we await the details of these proposals, the support package has been confirmed to include:

– A cap on any increase to rates bills in 2017/18 of 12.5% for hotels, pubs, restaurants, cafes and other accommodation.

– A cap on any increase to rates bills in 2017/18 of 12.5% on more than 1,000 office premises in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire

– Relief for renewable companies, including Hydro.

Whilst this is a welcome development, any reliefs are only applicable to the 2017/18 financial year whereas the proposed new rateable values will stand for 5 years, up to 31st March 2022; thus, in 12 months’ time, the rates payable will revert to the standard RV x rate poundage formula.   FG Burnett would therefore stress that it remains vital to challenge the proposed new rateable values through the appeal system as being the only approach which can potentially reduce this major business overhead in the longer term.

The Scottish Government publication on yesterday’s Statement can be found at; http://news.gov.scot/news/boost-for-business-with-rates-support

For further information and advice, please contact:

Scott Strachan – Head of Business Rates and Taxation

Tel:  01224 597536     Email: scott.strachan@fgburnett.co.uk

Moira Gordon – Associate

Tel: 01224 597526      Email: moira.gordon@fgburnett.co.uk

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