The announcement of new support for businesses in light of non-domestic rate revaluations has been welcomed by Scottish Land & Estates.
Katy Dickson, Senior Policy Officer, said: “Scottish Land and Estates has been alarmed at the significant rates increases and the impact the revaluations will have on rural businesses, particularly in the hospitality sector and for hydro-electric schemes. The announcement today will allow many businesses to plan more positively for the year ahead and the cap announced by the Cabinet Secretary for hotels, cafes, restaurants and pubs comes as a huge relief to the industry.
“We are pleased the increase cap will also be applied to small scale hydro schemes. Many members had contacted us to say their schemes could simply not operate with the proposed rates burden, and we are happy the relief for new hydro schemes will be continued and the eligibility threshold for a scheme to receive community renewables relief is to be reduced. Members have invested heavily in renewable energy which is playing a significant part in meeting the Scottish Government’s ambitious renewables and climate change targets. The proposed rate increases put this investment at risk.
“However, there is still much work to be done with the assessors during the six month appeal window from when the revaluation notices are delivered. We also continue to engage with the assessors and Scottish Government on the reintroduction of sporting rates. This is the final major rates concern for our members and we look forward to the impacts being examined by a parliamentary committee in the near future.”