Business Rates good news

Published on 30 October 2018

Bedford businesses will benefit from changes announced by the Chancellor.

A number of the smaller businesses will no longer have to pay Business Rates. 

“This is welcome news for smaller businesses said Christina Rowe, Director of the BedfordBID, “However the devil will be in the detail as always, so individual businesses will have to pay close attention to how it affects them. We will be issuing advice as the situation becomes clear over the coming weeks and months."

Business Improvement Districts are separate from the council and Government. Retail centres can opt locally to bring in a BID and then vote again every five years. BedfordBID collects a local levy and delivers a programme of initiatives under the scrutiny of the BedfordBID board which is made up of local businesses. Although not connected to Business Rates, the BID levy is calculated as being based upon a rateable value over £8,100 and includes charity shops.

National Business Improvement District legal guidelines clearly state that levy money paid by businesses canNOT be used to fund statutory obligations facing councils, but can ‘enhance’ services.  

“The role of BedfordBID is to provide services and initiatives stated in its Business Plan, agreed at the time of the last ballot. These are designed to enhance the trading environment, to promote the town centre and the businesses within in it under the Love Bedford brand.

“We are also a voice for the interests of 500+  town centre businesses, large and small, who quite reasonably expect a good service from our partners like the council, the police and other authorities to ensure that our environment is attractive to customers. We will continue to work in collaboration.”

BedfordBID’s marketing brand, website and social media are the widest read and followed platforms promoting the BID zone of the town centre

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