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Braintree district: Councils could pool business rates
1:00pm Sunday 22nd July 2012 in News
Money saved by pooling business rates across the county could be used to help youngsters into work or education.
Braintree Council is in talks with other Essex local authorities to see if more money could be recouped from Government by collecting business rates together.
At the moment Braintree Council collects rates, which are then put in a central pot and redistributed according to need.
In the 2011 to 2012 financial year Braintree Council collected just over £32m and received £5.9m in return.
The idea, which is still in its early stages, was voiced at Braintree Council’s cabinet meeting last week.
Council leader Graham Butland said: “If we pool business rates we actually might get more back to Essex than if we had them separately.
“It is early days at the moment but there seems to be a willingness to work together.”
It is not yet clear whether the money would be split individually or how much more could be gained.
Money collected from business rates is used for council services such as rubbish collections and community facilities.
Mr Butland said: “It is not unreasonable to say any money from business rates could encourage business and employment, which will of course probably impact on people not in education, employment or training.”
According to Braintree Council statistics for April this year the area had the fourth highest number of children, not in education, employment or training in Essex.
There were 5.3 per cent in Braintree compared to a 5.1 per cent average for Essex.