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CBI Calls For Urgent Amendments

16 Mar 2009

Businesses face a double burden of unwanted extra taxes at the worst time possible.

Businesses face a double burden of unwanted extra taxes at the worst possible time if a new Bill is passed by Parliament, the CBI has warned. The Business Rates Supplement Bill would allow local authorities to levy on companies supplementary taxes designed to pay for infrastructure projects which benefit local economies. The taxes could total £800m a year, according to the Lyons Review into Local Government of March 2007.

These supplementary taxes would follow the overall 5% rise in business rates announced by government, and set to cost £1.15bn, which is strongly opposed by business for being too large a rise at a very difficult time. The supplements would particularly affect manufacturers and retailers. The CBI is calling for an urgent amendment to the Supplements Bill. It says firms should get a vote to approve or reject proposed tax supplements to pay for new infrastructure projects. This would:

· help avoid white-elephant projects that business does not actually need, saving money and cutting waste
· ensure that priority is given to the projects that are most likely to help local economies
· avoid extra taxes at times when business simply cannot afford them, helping avoid business failures that cost jobs
· make the system fair - if only business pays a supplement, business should get a vote
· enhance trust and understanding between local government and business, helping local economies.

News source: Courtesy of Glass & Glazing Magazine