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Non-Domestic Rates: Ports

Volume 502: debated on Wednesday 16 December 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government with reference to the answer to the hon. Member for Liverpool, Riverside of 9 November 2009, Official Report, column 75W, on non-domestic rates: ports, if he will place in the Library a copy of the communication received from the trade association. (306548)

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to the hon. Member for Bromley and Chislehurst on 20 July 2009, Official Report, column 823-24W.

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government in respect of how many individual hereditaments in each port he expects backdated payments of business rates to be required. (307041)

As of 26 October 2009, there are 727 hereditaments within the 45 large statutory ports and container terminals in England with a liability for business rates backdated to 1 April 2005.

The Government have listened to the concerns of businesses with significant and unexpected backdated bills, including some within ports. It has legislated to allow such bills to be repaid over an unprecedented eight years period rather than in one single instalment. This will help affected businesses to manage their cash flows during the downturn by reducing the amount they are required to pay immediately by 87 per cent.

As at 8 October 2009, local authorities have reported that ratepayers occupying 221 properties within ports had fully discharged their backdated liability and ratepayers occupying a further 200 business properties within ports had been granted a schedule of payments.