New scheme to help local businesses have their say
BUSINESSES in Antrim are going to get a chance to have their say on improving specific business areas in the borough through a government initiative, however they will have to pay for the privilege.
The DSD has just completed consultation on the Business Improvement Districts initiative, which would facilitate local businesses to work in partnership with local government in the form of a Town Centre Partnership to address local issues.
Assistant Director of Development and Leisure, Paul Kelly informed members at last Thursday’s meeting of the Development and Leisure Committee, that businesses can join these partnerships to see what can be done to improve specific areas. However Mr Kelly said that members will be charged additional levy on top of the different rates they already pay. This levy would be collected by Land and Property Services.
Councillor Drew Ritchie said that rates are always a “bee in the bonnet” of local businesses without having to pay this levy.
Sinn Fein Councillor Anne Marie Logue warned that businesses are already struggling with rates, she said: “You only have to go into small businesses and hear that current rates are a burden. An increase is just going to cripple them, as a council I think that we should promote small business rates relief scheme.”
Mr Kelly replied: “As far as I understand it, the rate relief is already applied to small businesses.”
He also said he would relay his concerns about the impact this levy would have on small businesses.
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Antrim
Friday 24 May 2013
Temperature: 4 C to 14 C
Wind Speed: 15 mph
Wind direction: North
Temperature: 8 C to 16 C
Wind Speed: 12 mph
Wind direction: South