Confirmation hundreds of South Cambridgeshire businesses will receive funds from rate relief

23 August 2017

Around 300 South Cambridgeshire companies will benefit from financial relief from increases in business rates, it has been confirmed.

A support package was agreed at South Cambridgeshire District Council’s Finance and Staffing Portfolio Holder’s meeting yesterday (Tuesday 22 August).

This comes after the Chancellor announced a £300million fund to support those firms facing the steepest rises in business rates, because of changes to the way their rates are calculated.

South Cambridgeshire District Council has been allocated a total of £849,000 over four years by the Government, to pass on to local businesses affected, in the form of rate relief.

At yesterday’s meeting, the Council’s Finance and Staffing Portfolio Holder, Cllr Simon Edwards, accepted a recommendation to formally adopt a new Discretionary Business Rate Relief Policy.

Approximately 300 ratepayers will benefit from this scheme in the current financial year.

Council finance bosses say the average award paid out to each business is anticipated to be £1,200.

Any business with a rateable value of under £200,000, that faces a bill increase of at least 10%, is eligible to apply for the relief.

A separate fund of £50,000 will also be created from the money allocated to the Council by the Government as part of the programme. This is aimed at businesses in the district that do not qualify for the rate relief scheme mentioned above, but can demonstrate that the revaluation is causing them hardship.

Cllr Edwards said: “This is a positive step forward for businesses. It’s always difficult for them when we have these increases, but I’m really pleased that this fund is available for us to distribute to companies in our district.

“This scheme allows us to target those businesses which need the support most. We’ve tried to design a scheme that is fair, and will see each of them receive a meaningful amount.

“Those businesses that are being hardest hit are going to get some relief that will make life easier for them.

“We now plan to get this relief out to companies as quickly as possible.”