Last week Wera Hobhouse championed small business in Bath asking Jacob Rees-Mogg – Leader of the House of Commons – to urgently review business rates and “substantially reduce this tax on retail”.
Wera Hobhouse asked her question with reference to Small Business Saturday, which took place last weekend on Saturday 5th December. She also spoke about the loss of high street chains, including Debenhams, which will cost the UK 25,000 jobs.
In response to her question Jacob Rees-Mogg claimed that he had “a very considerable joint interest” in businesses in B&NES “doing well”, given that he represents North East Somerset. He emphasised that the Government was doing a review of business rates currently and would report back on the findings of that review in Spring 2021.
Following the exchange Wera Hobhouse said:
“I am pleased to hear that Jacob Rees-Mogg is also committed to the prosperity of businesses in Bath. B&NES Council has been doing everything they can to provide business relief to Bath’s small businesses – but without further help from Government to support our council – there is a limit to what is possible. Government must make it easier for councils to support small businesses and stop making them choose between standing up for business or cutting essential services.
“I was pleased to be able to support Bath’s small shops on Small Business Saturday, but many businesses need more help than our community can give, this holiday season. Government must urgently report their findings on the Business Rates Review and change to this unfair system”
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