New rates “will hurt business” say Tories

Conservative MSP Alison Harris

Conservative MSP Alison Harris

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Alison Harris MSP has condemned the Scottish Government for what she dubs its “blase attitude”to a rise in business rates.

The Conservative MSP said: “It is as simple as this – the revaluation could see businesses in Forth Valley and Scotland making redundancies, hiking prices and going into ruin.

“It is becoming a real concern across the length and breadth of the country.

“It shows just how out of touch they are with the requirements of Scottish business.”

Now, Ms Harris’s party is demanding that finance secretary Derek Mackay addresses Holyrood over the issue.

A formal request has gone into Scottish Parliament authorities from the Scottish Conservatives for Mr Mackay to give a statement when MSPs return next week.

Several organisations across Scotland are protesting at the revaluation scheme, which has seen some pay more than double their current taxation.

A Scottish government spokesman said: “Rating valuation of business properties is undertaken by independent Scottish assessors, funded by local councils, not the Scottish government.”

“Each council retains all the business rates revenue it collects, and it is for councils to apply rates reductions, on top of existing statutory reliefs, as they see fit.”