Following a campaign run by the Business Centre Association (BCA) against Empty Property Rates, Chancellor George Osborne has agreed a review on the unpopular legislation.

The BCA has been petitioning the Government to abolish the rateable value on Empty Property Rates, currently set at £2600.00, which it calls “unfair”. Instead the BCA would like to see the £18000.00 threshold reinstated, under which rates are not payable for a minimum of two years.

The BCA has said that by increasing the rateable value under the existing legislation investor confidence in property will be improved, development encouraged and a welcome financial relief provided to organisations within the SME bracket, which are struggling under current rates.

George Osborne has asked for a group of seven MPs to re-examine the Empty Property Rates legislation. The group includes Julian Sturdy, York Outer MP, who campaigned on behalf of the BCA, leading a lobby group across the political parties.

Jennifer Brooke, BCA Executive Director, commented: “This is a very welcome development. Empty Property Rates have stifled investment in the flexible space sector, which plays a vital role in nurturing small businesses and entrepreneurs. An easing of this burden will stimulate regeneration projects and is a positive step for the economy as a whole.

We are delighted that the Chancellor has listened to small businesses, the property sector and MPs from across the political divide and look forward to collaborating with the working group of MPs.”

The BCA e-petition against current Empty Property Rates can be visited, and signed, at http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/318

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