Plan to devolve business rates to councils

Author: Jim Pickard, Financial Times   |  

Councils almost unanimously want more financial autonomy from central government, according to a think-tank survey of 200 local authority leaders.

Ministers are examining ways to cede greater local control over business rates in a move that they hope will provide incentives to areas to encourage economic growth.

This is likely to be welcomed by authorities, according to the report by Localis, a local government think-tank. It found that 99.5 per cent of those surveyed wanted more financial autonomy. Almost as many, 96 per cent, wanted more control over their business rates – although only 77 per cent desired total independence from Whitehall funding, according to the report published on Monday.

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