Opposition Day — [9th Allotted Day] — Business Rates and the Recession — 25 Mar 2009 at 18:52

I beg to move,

That this House notes with concern that the effect of the five per cent. rise in business rates and the end of transitional rate relief will mean soaring bills at a time of deflation and recession; notes the poor take-up of small business rate relief and calls for entitlement to be made automatic in England, as it is in Wales; believes the complex and shrinking Local Authority Business Growth Incentive Scheme should be replaced with genuine incentives for local authorities to promote business growth; further calls for local authorities to have the power to apply local business rate discounts; expresses concern about the effect of the 2010 rates re-valuation on retail premises and urges a review of the re-valuation plans; cautions that local firms will suffer as a result of the Government's business rate rises on empty property, new supplementary rates being imposed with no business say, and retrospective increases in rates on business by ports; and asserts that the Government's policies on business rates are harming local firms during the recession.

I beg to move an amendment, to leave out from "House" to the end of the Question and add:

"notes that the Government has recognised the problems that many businesses face and is committed to do all it can to help them through these testing times; recognises the action the Government has taken to give targeted support to businesses including a £20 billion working capital scheme, an aim to pay Government suppliers within 10 days, a cut in the main rate of value added tax to 15 per cent., a deferral in the increase in the small companies' rate of corporation tax, free business health checks, more than £100 million towards debt advice, the HM Revenue and Customs Time to Pay scheme benefiting 93,000 firms by deferring £1.6 billion in tax, and extension of Empty Property Relief; believes the Government's commitment to the annual Retail Price Index cap means that there has been no real terms increase in business rates since 1990; welcomes the Small Business Rate Relief scheme benefiting 392,000 businesses by £260 million in 2007-08; recognises that funding of almost £1 billion since 2005-06 has been provided through the Local Authority Business Growth Incentive scheme; further supports fairness in the system that ensures that properties are revalued every five years with transitional relief to phase in significant increases in bills from revaluation; and acknowledges help provided for businesses, including in ports, receiving unexpected and significant backdated rates bills by introducing an unprecedented eight years to pay, as part of a package of measures that ensures through the rates system there is certainly, fairness and appropriate relief for businesses.".

Question put accordingly (Standing Order No. 31(2)), That the original words stand part of the Question.

The House divided: Ayes 220, Noes 297.

Debate in Parliament | Source |

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Party Summary

Votes by party, red entries are votes against the majority for that party.

What is Tell? '+1 tell' means that in addition one member of that party was a teller for that division lobby.

What are Boths? An MP can vote both aye and no in the same division. The boths page explains this.

What is Turnout? This is measured against the total membership of the party at the time of the vote.

PartyMajority (No)Minority (Aye)BothTurnout
Con0 170 (+2 tell)089.1%
DUP0 3033.3%
Independent1 4083.3%
Lab295 (+2 tell) 0084.9%
LDem0 43068.3%
SDLP1 0033.3%
Total:297 220083.5%

Rebel Voters - sorted by party

MPs for which their vote in this division differed from the majority vote of their party. You can see all votes in this division, or every eligible MP who could have voted in this division

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no rebellions

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