Boris Johnson has published a prospectus outlining the Mayor’s proposals to introduce a levy on larger businesses to help fund Crossrail.
A Business Rates Supplement (BRS) of 2p will apply to business properties with a rateable value of £50,000 or more. The measure, to be introduced from April 2010, will be limited to an estimated one in five of London’s business premises, and some categories of ratepayer such as charities and sports clubs will be entitled to full or partial exemption.
Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: Despite the economic climate it is essential that we do not allow our investment in the future to falter. We need to take a long view and move ahead with projects that will ensure that we emerge from the downturn in the best possible shape.”
Crossrail is the perfect example – it is essential to the London and UK economy, and will deliver a revitalised transport system capable of meeting demand, new stations, regenerated areas, and thousands of new jobs. Through this levy, larger London businesses will be playing their part in ensuring London a future from which they, and all Londoners, will benefit.
The Greater London Authority is expected to contribute around £4.1bn to the £15.9 billion Crossrail project funding using the income generated from the BRS.
Seventy per cent of the BRS will be paid by ratepayers in boroughs which have a station on the Crossrail route, and ratepayers in the City of London, Tower Hamlets (Canary Wharf) and Westminster where the majority of the jobs created by Crossrail will be located – will contribute around half the total.
Large businesses occupying properties with rateable values of £1m or more – which account for less than 3 per cent of Londons property base are likely to contribute over one third of the total BRS contribution each year.
Business ratepayers and other stakeholders are invited to comment on the proposals in the initial prospectus before 22 October 2009. The Mayor will have regard to these responses to this initial prospectus before issuing a final prospectus by the end of January 2010.