11 February 2019
Early years providers in England are being encouraged to respond to an inquiry on the impact of business rates launched by the Treasury Committee.
Despite a renewed call for business rates to be scrapped for childcare providers in England, there were no new measures to support nurseries in the autumn budget. Early years providers in Scotland have been exempt from paying business rates since April 2018 and nurseries in Wales will be exempt from April 2019 onwards.
Local authorities can currently choose to offer local rate relief to early years providers but there is no national guidance or funding for this.
Neil Leitch, Chief Executive at the Pre-School Learning Alliance, said:
“It beggars belief that the Government is still refusing to budge on this issue, despite the fact that providers in Wales and Scotland have now been granted exemption from business rates.”
“Many settings have seen a significant increase in business rates over recent years, putting even more pressure on their finances at an already incredibly challenging time.”
“It’s vital, therefore, that as many providers as possible respond to this inquiry, and ensure that the Government remembers that this is an issue affecting more than just shops, pubs and other retailers.”
The deadline for written submissions is 2 April 2019. Early years providers can respond to the inquiry here.