Caroline Lucas urges Brighton small business rates cut

The Argus: Caroline Lucas urges Brighton small business rates cut Caroline Lucas urges Brighton small business rates cut

Brighton MP Caroline Lucas has urged the Chancellor to cut business rates for struggling city firms.

The Green Brighton Pavilion MP has written to the Treasury calling for measures to allow more small businesses to get a discount on their business rates.

The call for reform comes ahead of George Osborne's Chancellor's Autumn Statement on Thursday and Small Business Saturday on December 7.

According to Ms Lucas, the new measures would benefit over 2,600 businesses in Brighton and Hove.

Currently companies are entitled to small business rate relief if they use only one property and its rateable value is less than £12,000.

In her letter to Treasury minister David Gauke, Dr Lucas called for this threshold to be increased to £15,000.

Firms whose property has a rateable value of £6,000 or less can currently qualify for 100% rate relief, but this support is not guaranteed beyond March 31 next year.

The Green MP is also calling for relief to continue beyond that date, which would leave 2,109 city businesses better off.

David Sewell, chairman of the North Laine Traders' Association, said rate reform would be a “huge help” for struggling smaller firms in Brighton and Hove.

He said: “High business rates hinders independent and young businesses from keeping their heads above water.

“The rates have been going up for about 10 years and it's got to stop. Moving the threshold to £15,000 would be a good start.

“Anything that Caroline Lucas can do to help would be warmly welcomed.”

Industry leaders, including Sir Philip Green and Dalton Philips, have called for business rates to be cut, with the British Chambers of Commerce branding the system “iniquitous” and “broken”.

Caroline Lucas, MP for Brighton Pavilion, said: “Brighton and Hove's unique and vibrant small businesses are vital to the city's economy. As well as forming part of community life, they provide valuable services and jobs.

“The business owners I meet in Brighton Pavilion tell me that they are struggling with business rates, which represent their highest expense after rent and wages. Many of them don't get much benefit from relief, because their rates are so high.

“This Government says it is pro-small business, and some of the steps it has taken so far are welcome. But we need more businesses to benefit, and for longer.”

Comments (13)

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8:02am Tue 3 Dec 13

juleshove says...

Ms Lucas actually doing something that might help Brighton rather than simply to enhance her own profile. Wonders will never cease. Still an embarrassment as an MP though.
Ms Lucas actually doing something that might help Brighton rather than simply to enhance her own profile. Wonders will never cease. Still an embarrassment as an MP though. juleshove

8:52am Tue 3 Dec 13

Can this be says...

What does "Many of them don't get much benefit from relief, because their rates are so high" mean? It is not obvious to me. What relief? Is it another sticking plaster that someone stuck on in the past rather than actually correct something which wasn't working?
What does "Many of them don't get much benefit from relief, because their rates are so high" mean? It is not obvious to me. What relief? Is it another sticking plaster that someone stuck on in the past rather than actually correct something which wasn't working? Can this be

9:00am Tue 3 Dec 13

Crystal Ball says...

Shut up Lucas and go an do what you do best i.e. nothing for the constituents.
Shut up Lucas and go an do what you do best i.e. nothing for the constituents. Crystal Ball

9:01am Tue 3 Dec 13

pachallis says...

It does make a change to see Caroline Lucas actually doing something to help businesses in Brighton rather than her normal left-wing/feminist publicity seeking antics.

However, how much of the problems in Brighton can be clearly blamed on the irresponsible activities of her green-led council that have encouraged customers to switch their allegiance to other locations?

I, of course, focus on the green controlled transport committee and their "sustainable transport" changes that make it faster, as an example, to drive to Burgess Hill, Crawley or Worthing instead of going by bus to Brighton.

Roll on May 2015!
It does make a change to see Caroline Lucas actually doing something to help businesses in Brighton rather than her normal left-wing/feminist publicity seeking antics. However, how much of the problems in Brighton can be clearly blamed on the irresponsible activities of her green-led council that have encouraged customers to switch their allegiance to other locations? I, of course, focus on the green controlled transport committee and their "sustainable transport" changes that make it faster, as an example, to drive to Burgess Hill, Crawley or Worthing instead of going by bus to Brighton. Roll on May 2015! pachallis

9:08am Tue 3 Dec 13

Cyril Bolleaux says...

The small businesses at Seven Dials want access for their customers. I suggest Lucas and all Green Councillors should speak directly to businesses affected by the Council's road schemes and see what they can do to help those businesses. Lucas could also speak to manufacturers such as EDO rather than supporting mob violence to shut them down.
The small businesses at Seven Dials want access for their customers. I suggest Lucas and all Green Councillors should speak directly to businesses affected by the Council's road schemes and see what they can do to help those businesses. Lucas could also speak to manufacturers such as EDO rather than supporting mob violence to shut them down. Cyril Bolleaux

10:05am Tue 3 Dec 13

HJarrs says...

Sensible proposals to help small businesses, which operate at great disadvantage to large tax dodging corporations.

This initiative could easily be funded by cracking down on tax avoidance by the likes of Amazon and all the others that have been documented of the last few years.
Sensible proposals to help small businesses, which operate at great disadvantage to large tax dodging corporations. This initiative could easily be funded by cracking down on tax avoidance by the likes of Amazon and all the others that have been documented of the last few years. HJarrs

10:44am Tue 3 Dec 13

Cyril Bolleaux says...

HJarrs wrote:
Sensible proposals to help small businesses, which operate at great disadvantage to large tax dodging corporations. This initiative could easily be funded by cracking down on tax avoidance by the likes of Amazon and all the others that have been documented of the last few years.
Tripe. Perhaps you can explain how you would crack down on Amazon? The OECD is looking at base tax erosion but there will be complex international negotiations before agreement can be reached.
[quote][p][bold]HJarrs[/bold] wrote: Sensible proposals to help small businesses, which operate at great disadvantage to large tax dodging corporations. This initiative could easily be funded by cracking down on tax avoidance by the likes of Amazon and all the others that have been documented of the last few years.[/p][/quote]Tripe. Perhaps you can explain how you would crack down on Amazon? The OECD is looking at base tax erosion but there will be complex international negotiations before agreement can be reached. Cyril Bolleaux

3:00pm Tue 3 Dec 13

Idontbelieveit1948 says...

Caroline Lucas, MP for Brighton Pavilion, said: “Brighton and Hove's unique and vibrant small businesses are vital to the city's economy. As well as forming part of community life, they provide valuable services and jobs.

Shame that Saint Caroline doesn't impress this on the Green Slime currently running the council as there anti business / council taxpayer / Brighton & Hove in general / driver policies are doing much to harm the city's small businesses.
Caroline Lucas, MP for Brighton Pavilion, said: “Brighton and Hove's unique and vibrant small businesses are vital to the city's economy. As well as forming part of community life, they provide valuable services and jobs. Shame that Saint Caroline doesn't impress this on the Green Slime currently running the council as there anti business / council taxpayer / Brighton & Hove in general / driver policies are doing much to harm the city's small businesses. Idontbelieveit1948

5:20pm Tue 3 Dec 13

nocando says...

Wakey wakey Kirby.
Wakey wakey Kirby. nocando

6:09pm Tue 3 Dec 13

LeonBIank666 says...

Lucas, follow this simple rules to help small businesses in the city instead of your self promoting idiocy.

1. Tackle the great unwashed, perverted filth on our streets instead of promoting drugs. Make Brighton a nice place to shop, not a drug filled scat fest.

2. Ease parking charges. All because you are filled with hate, do not punish the driver anymore. Encourage visitors to shop.

3. Resign your post. Get a decent MP in and once again the spirit of old Brighton will be restored.

How does this woman sleep at night knowing the harm she is doing?

3.
Lucas, follow this simple rules to help small businesses in the city instead of your self promoting idiocy. 1. Tackle the great unwashed, perverted filth on our streets instead of promoting drugs. Make Brighton a nice place to shop, not a drug filled scat fest. 2. Ease parking charges. All because you are filled with hate, do not punish the driver anymore. Encourage visitors to shop. 3. Resign your post. Get a decent MP in and once again the spirit of old Brighton will be restored. How does this woman sleep at night knowing the harm she is doing? 3. LeonBIank666

11:43pm Tue 3 Dec 13

Maxwell's Ghost says...

All businesses with an online customer base are seeing record transactions and a huge year on year increase to online sales. Some are using some clever marketing tools such as British Airways which links its website to some leading high street retailers where sales earn customers points in return free flights. These unions between big business are proving very powerful and online sales are the lowest cost sales channel. Fewer staff and fewer overheads. Footfall also no longer means sales. They are changing the ways people shop in the way the first self serve supermarkets did in the 50s which then followed with supermarkets introducing their own brands. People browse in town and buy online.
City centres such as Brighton are being left behind in competing with this growing trend particularly now the out of town retail sites are offering click and collect on behalf of online traders so there's no need to wait in for parcels or make the hideous trip to town to collect parcels. Asda has a drive through Click and collect, free parking out of town, you can walk into community shops or BP garages and pick up your online purchases, some 24 hours a day. Dangerous waters are ahead for B&H which has relied on good weather summers to save its retail business.
No park and ride, expensive bus fares, shocking parking prices, so near to London and other top shopping locations. I'm not surprised that the city has a higher than average number of empty shops.
All businesses with an online customer base are seeing record transactions and a huge year on year increase to online sales. Some are using some clever marketing tools such as British Airways which links its website to some leading high street retailers where sales earn customers points in return free flights. These unions between big business are proving very powerful and online sales are the lowest cost sales channel. Fewer staff and fewer overheads. Footfall also no longer means sales. They are changing the ways people shop in the way the first self serve supermarkets did in the 50s which then followed with supermarkets introducing their own brands. People browse in town and buy online. City centres such as Brighton are being left behind in competing with this growing trend particularly now the out of town retail sites are offering click and collect on behalf of online traders so there's no need to wait in for parcels or make the hideous trip to town to collect parcels. Asda has a drive through Click and collect, free parking out of town, you can walk into community shops or BP garages and pick up your online purchases, some 24 hours a day. Dangerous waters are ahead for B&H which has relied on good weather summers to save its retail business. No park and ride, expensive bus fares, shocking parking prices, so near to London and other top shopping locations. I'm not surprised that the city has a higher than average number of empty shops. Maxwell's Ghost

7:11am Wed 4 Dec 13

HJarrs says...

Maxwell's Ghost wrote:
All businesses with an online customer base are seeing record transactions and a huge year on year increase to online sales. Some are using some clever marketing tools such as British Airways which links its website to some leading high street retailers where sales earn customers points in return free flights. These unions between big business are proving very powerful and online sales are the lowest cost sales channel. Fewer staff and fewer overheads. Footfall also no longer means sales. They are changing the ways people shop in the way the first self serve supermarkets did in the 50s which then followed with supermarkets introducing their own brands. People browse in town and buy online.
City centres such as Brighton are being left behind in competing with this growing trend particularly now the out of town retail sites are offering click and collect on behalf of online traders so there's no need to wait in for parcels or make the hideous trip to town to collect parcels. Asda has a drive through Click and collect, free parking out of town, you can walk into community shops or BP garages and pick up your online purchases, some 24 hours a day. Dangerous waters are ahead for B&H which has relied on good weather summers to save its retail business.
No park and ride, expensive bus fares, shocking parking prices, so near to London and other top shopping locations. I'm not surprised that the city has a higher than average number of empty shops.
B&H has a below average number of empty shops.
[quote][p][bold]Maxwell's Ghost[/bold] wrote: All businesses with an online customer base are seeing record transactions and a huge year on year increase to online sales. Some are using some clever marketing tools such as British Airways which links its website to some leading high street retailers where sales earn customers points in return free flights. These unions between big business are proving very powerful and online sales are the lowest cost sales channel. Fewer staff and fewer overheads. Footfall also no longer means sales. They are changing the ways people shop in the way the first self serve supermarkets did in the 50s which then followed with supermarkets introducing their own brands. People browse in town and buy online. City centres such as Brighton are being left behind in competing with this growing trend particularly now the out of town retail sites are offering click and collect on behalf of online traders so there's no need to wait in for parcels or make the hideous trip to town to collect parcels. Asda has a drive through Click and collect, free parking out of town, you can walk into community shops or BP garages and pick up your online purchases, some 24 hours a day. Dangerous waters are ahead for B&H which has relied on good weather summers to save its retail business. No park and ride, expensive bus fares, shocking parking prices, so near to London and other top shopping locations. I'm not surprised that the city has a higher than average number of empty shops.[/p][/quote]B&H has a below average number of empty shops. HJarrs

9:23am Wed 4 Dec 13

pachallis says...

HJarrs wrote:
Maxwell's Ghost wrote:
All businesses with an online customer base are seeing record transactions and a huge year on year increase to online sales. Some are using some clever marketing tools such as British Airways which links its website to some leading high street retailers where sales earn customers points in return free flights. These unions between big business are proving very powerful and online sales are the lowest cost sales channel. Fewer staff and fewer overheads. Footfall also no longer means sales. They are changing the ways people shop in the way the first self serve supermarkets did in the 50s which then followed with supermarkets introducing their own brands. People browse in town and buy online.
City centres such as Brighton are being left behind in competing with this growing trend particularly now the out of town retail sites are offering click and collect on behalf of online traders so there's no need to wait in for parcels or make the hideous trip to town to collect parcels. Asda has a drive through Click and collect, free parking out of town, you can walk into community shops or BP garages and pick up your online purchases, some 24 hours a day. Dangerous waters are ahead for B&H which has relied on good weather summers to save its retail business.
No park and ride, expensive bus fares, shocking parking prices, so near to London and other top shopping locations. I'm not surprised that the city has a higher than average number of empty shops.
B&H has a below average number of empty shops.
@HJarrs - please can you provide background information to your claim?

What do you count as a shop? What counts as empty (i.e. does it include charity shops)? What locations are being compared (i.e. within Sussex or UK as a whole)?

Without this I would assume this is just your normal green spin doctoring.
[quote][p][bold]HJarrs[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Maxwell's Ghost[/bold] wrote: All businesses with an online customer base are seeing record transactions and a huge year on year increase to online sales. Some are using some clever marketing tools such as British Airways which links its website to some leading high street retailers where sales earn customers points in return free flights. These unions between big business are proving very powerful and online sales are the lowest cost sales channel. Fewer staff and fewer overheads. Footfall also no longer means sales. They are changing the ways people shop in the way the first self serve supermarkets did in the 50s which then followed with supermarkets introducing their own brands. People browse in town and buy online. City centres such as Brighton are being left behind in competing with this growing trend particularly now the out of town retail sites are offering click and collect on behalf of online traders so there's no need to wait in for parcels or make the hideous trip to town to collect parcels. Asda has a drive through Click and collect, free parking out of town, you can walk into community shops or BP garages and pick up your online purchases, some 24 hours a day. Dangerous waters are ahead for B&H which has relied on good weather summers to save its retail business. No park and ride, expensive bus fares, shocking parking prices, so near to London and other top shopping locations. I'm not surprised that the city has a higher than average number of empty shops.[/p][/quote]B&H has a below average number of empty shops.[/p][/quote]@HJarrs - please can you provide background information to your claim? What do you count as a shop? What counts as empty (i.e. does it include charity shops)? What locations are being compared (i.e. within Sussex or UK as a whole)? Without this I would assume this is just your normal green spin doctoring. pachallis

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