We are deeply concerned that City firms are being hit particularly hard in the first central Government revaluation since 2010 with average bills set to rise by 30%. Bills will be sent out in March next year but you can check your draft 2017 valuation now and ask for it to be changed if it’s wrong by providing rental evidence.
Strong demand for commercial property has placed pressure on the supply of office space across the capital which is driving up rents. Generally, though, City rents are still well below those in Westminster.
The City is committed to increasing the supply of accommodation for businesses and we continue to press, in particular, for smaller units to accommodate SMEs with fewer than 50 or 100 staff in space of less than 500 sq metres, which have been diminishing.
Over the years the make-up of the City has changed, with smaller, more agile and flexible businesses now the norm. Following the Brexit vote, London needs to redouble its efforts to maintain its competitive position as a world-leading financial and business centre in attracting all types of firms. A sudden and sharp increase in tax bills for the capital’s businesses is both unwelcome and badly timed given the uncertainties Brexit brings.
We want to see the impact eased through meaningful transitional relief. The Government’s current proposals for transition would see bills increase by up to 42% cent next year which is a huge increase at one go and at short notice.
This is another issue which adds weight to the devolution case for London to decouple London’s business rates system from the rest of the country. This will stop London’s high property values from distorting the national distribution of rates and ease the pressure on the City’s businesses.
You can check your 2017 draft valuation here and ask for it to be amended if it’s wrong.
PS – 2017 City Vote Registration
There are just 2 weeks left now to renew your entitlement to vote or register for the first time. The process has been made even easier and is fully online.
This is an important way to hold the City Corporation to account and to have your say in the way the square mile is run. It’s also a good way to be kept informed about what’s happening in the City and your Ward in which you work or live.
If you’ve not been asked if you’d like to continue on the register, and would like to, please get in touch and we can let you know who is co-ordinating the process for your business. Residential votes are managed separately direct with individual residents.
Alderman Michael Mainelli
Common Councilmen John Bennett (Deputy), John Scott and Chris Hayward