Over 1200 businesses across the Stirling Council area have waited over 18 months to learn the outcome of their business rates appeals, according to new figures published today.
The Non-Domestic Rates Revaluation Appeals 2018-19 Q2 report published by the Scottish Government shows that of the 1,779 who appealed their revaluation across the region, 1,241 are still waiting for a decision from the assessor.
That means that only 30% of businesses who appealed have been informed of the assessor’s decision, leaving a total of £74 million in outstanding appealed rateable value.
Mid-Scotland and Fife MSP Dean Lockhart has said that these figures demonstrate that the business rates system is broken and is in need of serious reform.
Dean Lockhart MSP said:
‘’These figures show that over 1200 businesses across the Stirling area are stuck in no man’s land waiting for resolution of their appeal.
‘’I know from talking to constituents that rate valuations can be the difference between staying in business or going bust. It is as simple as that.
‘’To leave the livelihoods of hundreds of families uncertain for over 18 months demonstrates a total failure of the system, and a total failure of the authorities to support business.
‘’The complacency of many when it comes to the needs of Stirling’s businesses has got to change, and on a national level the Scottish Government’s failure to implement changes to the appeals process demonstrates a lack of understanding of those at Holyrood of the needs of business.
‘’I will press the SNP Government to do all it can to speed up this system and give businesses in the region I represent the certainty they need to continue to trade.’’