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Non-Domestic Rates: Ports

Volume 487: debated on Wednesday 11 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what qualifying conditions apply for ports to be eligible to pay retrospective business rates back over time. (255252)

I laid the regulations that set out the qualifying conditions before Parliament on 10 February 2009.

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government when the previous rating system for port businesses ended; and how much was paid under this system by Associated British Ports in (a) Hull, (b) Grimsby, (c) Immingham and (d) Goole for (i) 2000 to 2005 and (ii) 2005 to 2008. (256274)

Prescription rating in ports ended in March 2005, but prescription applied only to the port operator. Separate properties within ports have always been separately liable for business rates and prior to the ports review around 1,600 were so listed and liable.

We do not hold information for the amount of rates paid by individual businesses, as the calculation of business rates, taking into account any reliefs due, is a matter for the local authority.

However, the 2005 lists rateable values for the named ports are:

£

Port

2005 Rating list (before review)

2005 Rating list (post review)

Effective date

Hull

9,000,000

3,100,000

1 April 2005

Grimsby

1,350,000

500,000

1 April 2005

Immingham

17,930,000

11,000,000

1 April 2005

Goole

940,000

205,000

1 April 2005

The rateable values under the 2000 rating lists in some cases varied from year to year, details can be found on the Valuation Office website at:

www.voa.gov.uk.

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government when the Valuation Office Agency (VOA) (a) assessed port businesses for non-business rates and (b) notified the businesses concerned; and what consultations the VOA had with port businesses in 2005. (256275)

The date from which the Valuation Office Agency (VOA) assessed port businesses for non-domestic business rates and the date from which the businesses concerned were notified of their assessments varies according to the facts and circumstances of each property. Such information could be assembled only at disproportionate cost.

Prior to publication of the 2005 lists discussions were held with port operators on assessment levels, on the basis of information supplied to the VOA by them.

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government on what date individual rating valuations of port businesses began to apply. (256276)

Separately occupied properties within ports have always been liable to be rated separately in the same way as separately occupied property situated outside a port. The effective date applicable to an individual rating valuation is governed by statutory regulations.

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what assessment was made by her Department and its predecessor of the individual rating valuations of port businesses in 2005; and how these valuations were issued. (256277)

Rateable values are assessed independently by the Valuation Office Agency, and this Department is not involved in the process.