Small Business Rate Relief (Automatic Payment) Bill CONSULTATION VERSION
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THIS DRAFT OF PETER'S BILL IS OPEN FOR CONSULTATION UNTIL 20TH FEBRUARY 2009; PLEASE RESPOND TO luffpj@parliament.uk. This is the actual draft bill - for an explanation of the purpose of the Bill please see the press release of today's date and an earlier one on this site dated 15th January 2009.
Small Business Rate Relief (Automatic Payment) Bill CONSULTATION VERSION

CONTENTS

1. Automatic Application of Mandatory Relief for Small Businesses
2. Eligibility for Mandatory Relief for Small Businesses
3. Evidence of Eligibility to Small Business Rate Relief
4. Provisions for Automatic Application of Mandatory Relief for Small Businesses
5. Commencement
6. Interpretation
7. Citation and extent


A BILL

To require small business rate relief payment to be made automatically; and for connected purposes.


BE IT ENACTED, by the Queen's Most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:-

1. Automatic Application of Mandatory Relief for Small Businesses

The Secretary of State shall make provision for the automatic application by the billing authority of the mandatory relief for small businesses to a person (the ratepayer) under section 43(1)(4B)(a) of the 1988 Act.


2. Eligibility for Mandatory Relief for Small Businesses

For the purposes of section 1, the ratepayer shall be eligible for mandatory relief for small businesses where the rateable value of a hereditament as shown in the local non-domestic rating list fulfils the conditions for the mandatory relief for small businesses as prescribed in section 43(4B)(a)(i) of the 1988 Act.


3. Evidence of eligibility to Small Business Rate Relief

(a) The information relating to the rateable value of the hereditament maintained on the local non-domestic rating list shall be sufficient evidence for the purpose of deciding whether a ratepayer shall be eligible to the automatic application of mandatory relief for small businesses.

(b) Where it is determined that the person is not eligible, whether arising fraudulently or otherwise, to the whole or any part of the application of mandatory relief for small businesses, the billing authority by whom the automatic application of mandatory relief under subsection (2) above is made may require the application or, as the case may be, the part of the application of the mandatory relief to be repaid.

(c) Regulations may be made prescribing the Secretary of State or the billing authority to recover in such circumstances and from such persons as may be prescribed any amount applied to a person who is not eligible for such application of mandatory relief.


4. Provisions for Automatic Application of Mandatory Relief for Small Businesses

(a) Provisions for the automatic application of mandatory relief for small businesses may be made by way of statutory instrument.

(b) Regulations made under subsection 4(a) shall be laid each House of Parliament not less than [ ] months after the coming into effect of this Act.

(b) Regulations under subsection 4(a)—
(i) may make different provision for different cases; and
(ii) may contain such necessary incidental, supplemental, consequential and transitional provision as the Secretary of State thinks fit, including provision amending, repealing or revoking any enactment.

(c) In subsection (b) “enactment” means any enactment contained in—
(i) an Act, whenever passed, or
(ii) an instrument, whenever made, under an Act, whenever passed.

(d) No regulations may be made under subsection (4a) unless a draft of the statutory instrument containing the regulations has been laid before, and approved by a resolution of, each House of Parliament.

5 Commencement

The provisions of this Act shall come into force on the day on which this Act is passed.

6. Interpretation

In this Act -
"1988 Act” means the Local Government Finance Act 1988;

"mandatory relief for small businesses” has the meaning in section 43(4B)(a) of the Local Government Finance Act 1988;

“billing authority” has the meaning in section 144 of the 1988 Act;

“hereditament” has the meaning given in section 64 of the 1988 Act.

7. Citation and extent

(1) This Act may be cited as the Small Business Rate Relief (Automatic Payment) Act 2009.

(2) This Act does not extend to Northern Ireland, Scotland, or Wales.


Small Business Rate Relief (Automatic Payment) Bill



A B I L L

To require small business rate relief payment to be made automatically; and for connected purposes.

Ordered to be brought in by Peter Luff, Adrian Bailey, Roger Berry, Brian Binley, Michael Clapham, David Heath, Lindsay Hoyle, Julie Kirkbride, Andy Love, Bob Neil, Mark Oaten, Mark Prisk


Ordered, by the House of Commons,
to be Printed, ……. February 2009.


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