National Non Domestic Rates Extension of Transitional Relief Policy for Small and Medium Properties and Adoption of a Living Wage Discount Policy
Decision status: For Determination
Is Key decision?: Yes
Is subject to call in?: Yes
Councillor Phil Davies introduced a report by the Head of Business Processes that sought formal approval to extend the National Non Domestic Rates Transitional Relief Scheme that was due to expire on 31 March 2015 until 31 March 2017. This was in line with the Chancellor’s autumn statement of 3 December 2014 which also required the Council to amend its own policy on Retail Rate Relief increasing the maximum award from £1000 to £1500 from 1 April 2015. The report also sought approval to introduce the Council’s own Living Wage local discount for businesses that signed up and gained licensed accreditation for paying the Living Wage, which was part of the Council’s adopted Budget proposal for 2015-16.
Councillor Phil Davies made reference to Wirral being the first ‘Living Wage Council’ and informed the Cabinet that he was keen for the business community to also adopt the ‘Living Wage’ model. The Council could offer a discount on business rates of up to £5000 as an incentive. He had asked for a detailed scheme to be drawn up and he was pleased with the end result.
Councillor Bernie Mooney informed that she totally agreed with what Councillor Phil Davies had said but was concerned about the knock on effect of the policies and proposed that the Cabinet should campaign nationally in relation to people and particularly carers who earned just under £110 as tax credits took them over the limit. Councillor Phil Davies informed that he was attending the Local Government Association’s Conference the following day and he would take this matter up there.
(1) the transitional rate relief policy (Appendix 1 to the report) be approved as the authority policy from 2015/17 for current relief recipients;
(2) the retail relief policy (Appendix 2 to the report) be amended to increase the maximum amount of relief granted from £1,000 to £1,500 for 2015-16; and
(3) the Living Wage discount policy (Appendix 3 to the report) be approved for 2015-16.
Report author: Malcolm Flanagan
Publication date: 07/07/2015
Date of decision: 29/06/2015
Decided at meeting: 29/06/2015 - Cabinet
Effective from: 15/07/2015