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Islington Council has pledged support for local businesses as it emerged many firms are likely to face higher business rates because of the Government’s reassessment of rateable values.
The Government’s Valuation Agency (VOA) sets business rates across the country.  It has been reassessing rateable values and announced rateable values in Islington will increase by an average of 45 per cent. This is likely to mean business rate increases for many Islington businesses.
Islington Council has no control over the amount of rates businesses pay. The council is writing to thousands of Islington businesses advising them of the changes, and urging them to check their rateable value is correct.
The council will run workshops for local businesses in October and November to explain the revaluation process, and offer advice and support on managing business rates payments.
Not all businesses will necessarily have to pay more under the changes to rateable values.  Some details of changes to business rates have yet to emerge, and some businesses may benefit from higher thresholds under the improved small business rates scheme.
Cllr Asima Shaikh, Islington Council’s executive member for economic development, said: “The Government’s new rateable values for businesses could mean a big increase in business rates for many Islington businesses.
“We are concerned that this would have an impact on many local companies.  Over the next few months we will offer advice about how companies can check their rateable value is correct, and how they can manage business rates payments.
“We will also join London-wide efforts to encourage national Government to make sure business rates are set fairly for small businesses in our city.”
The council’s letter to businesses will also offer the following advice:
* Charities, businesses in partially-occupied properties and some smaller businesses may be eligible for a discount
* Businesses can make payments more manageable by setting up a Direct Debit to spread the bill over 12 months instead of 10
For more information on business rates please see www.islington.gov.uk/businessrates

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