The review of ports by the Valuation Office Agency was carried out in order to ensure that all individual business properties within, and outside, ports are rated fairly and to ensure that the burden of contributions to the funding local government services is shared equitably among businesses across the country.
The Government have listened to the concerns of businesses with significant and unexpected backdated bills, including some within ports. It has legislated to enable such bills to be repaid over an unprecedented eight years rather than in a single instalment, thus helping affected businesses to manage the impact on their cash flows during the downturn by reducing the amount they are required to pay now by 87.5 per cent.
The Government only hold a snap shot of information, from local authorities, on how much has been collected from port based ratepayers for backdated liabilities. It does not have information on how much may have been collected in respect of ongoing business rates payments on hereditaments in ports. As at 8 October 2009, local authorities have reported that ratepayers occupying 221 properties within ports had fully discharged their backdated liability and that a total of £21,246,973.01 in backdated liabilities had been collected.