Councillors want more from business rates

“Local Government Association chairman Lord Porter this week confirmed the body’s new hardline approach to business rates retention, publicly rejecting any imposition of new duties from central government.

Last week, Room151 revealed a shift in approach by the LGA towards a stronger rejection of the idea that business rates retention should be accompanied by new service obligations for councils.

Speaking to the LGA annual conference, Lord Porter said that councils should expect to be rewarded for their success in slashing budgets during the recent period of austerity.

He said: “Councils can no longer be expected to run our local services on a shoestring. We must shout from the roof tops for local government to be put back on a sustainable financial footing.

“We’ve protected government for a long time by making sure all the cuts thrown our way were implemented in a way that shielded our residents as much as possible.

“But if austerity is coming to an end, then, as we were in the front of the queue when it started, we must also be at the front of the queue for more money when it ends . …”