Chamber chief in rate review call

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The head of Barnsley and Rotherham Chamber has welcomed news that business rates will undergo “a timely” review, with findings feeding into the 2016 Budget.

But the caveat by the Government that any changes will be ‘fiscally neutral’ is concerning, says Andrew Denniff.

Last year, Johnston Press - The Star’s parent company - and the British Chambers of Commerce called for an overhaul of the dated and burdensome rates system.

It led to the Chancellor ordering a full review.

Andrew Denniff said: “It is good to see that the government is looking at a wide-ranging review of business rates, as we have said on many occasions previously, this is a tax on small businesses before they have even made a profit.

“The government is asking a lot of important questions in this review - for business however, actions speak louder than words.

“Unless a full and robust reform of business rates is delivered at next year’s budget, business will regard this as a missed opportunity to tackle a huge brake on investment and growth.”