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The last rating revaluation was effective from April 2010 and based on April 2008 values, which turned out to be at the peak of the market, before the decline in both rental and capital values over the last 4/5 years.

In unexpectedly postponing the 2015 revaluation, the Government cited the 5 year backlog of appeals on Rateable Values for commercial/industrial properties. Apparently, earlier this year, there were nearly 250,000 outstanding appeals that are only being cleared at a rate of about 50,000 per annum.

These delays are undoubtedly causing financial hardship, particularly to retail and industrial occupiers, waiting for the appeal decisions and the anticipated rebates.

Am I alone in thinking that the postponement of the 2015 revaluation suits the Government’s tax raising ambitions, as the new revaluation will produce a lower level of Rateable Values compared to the 2010 figures?

Simply protecting current rates income does nothing to address the unaffordability of business rates and the disproportionate amounts of tax that this raises due to RPI linkage of the Uniform Business Rate each year.

Come on Gideon, get a grip, and whilst you’re at it do something about the inequitable imposition of rates on empty buildings which was just another money grabbing exercise by your rarely sighted predecessor.

TONY DRAKE