The BID is very aware that the changes in rateable values which will come into effect from 1st April this year, carry major implications for a large number of businesses who will be adversely affected.

This is particularly hard to swallow for the many small enterprises who make up our town’s unique independent offer, businesses which benefit the town as a whole as they represent a major attraction for visitors and shoppers. The level of increases proposed for many of these operations will add an onerous amount which will seriously impact their bottom line and in some instances, potentially threaten their ability to continue trading.

It is particularly painful for our resourceful and enterprising business community who have already withstood the pressures of recession, to be faced with yet another financial hurdle.

We understand the government is putting in place some measures to support businesses with the revaluation through the transitional relief scheme, which aims to cap increases to 45%. However, this is still a major uplift for many businesses who may not be able to weather this kind of massive rise.

The BID is also urging businesses to check their draft rates revaluation on the Valuation Office Agency website and to appeal if they believe that the new rateable value assigned to their property is incorrect with evidence showing if a mismatch between the rent paid and the calculated rateable value are apart.

We are committed to supporting businesses wherever we can by providing information and latest updates regarding the impending changes, as well as meeting other parties to share business concerns and seek support.

As a BID we have decided there will be no change to BID member levy payments in the year ahead.  We are not adjusting any payments to reflect the new rateable values, but have committed to retaining the 2011 valuations used to calculate the original BID levy.