Thousands of businesses in North Ayrshire and across Scotland will pay no non-domestic rates (NDR) during financial 2021/22, which begins in April, under proposals outlined in the Scottish Parliament this week.
The 100% NDR relief will include properties in the retail, hospitality, leisure and aviation sectors, and newspaper publishing. The extension of this relief for the full year is expected to save ratepayers £719 million.
Other additional spending in 2021/22 includes:
£120 million for mental health
£120 million for affordable housing
£100 million to support people on low incomes
£60 million for schools to help pupils catch-up on missed education
£60 million for NHS recovery
£45 million for heat decarbonisation, energy efficiency and fuel poverty
£21.5 million for Scottish Enterprise
North Ayrshire Council and other local authorities will together receive a further £275 million in the current financial year to address COVID-19 pressures, while a further £40 million is being made available to support the safe reopening of schools.
Kenneth Gibson MSP said:
“The decision to extend NDR relief to the full financial year 2021/22 is very welcome and will provide a great boost to our hard-pressed retail, hospitality, leisure and aviation sectors and our newspaper industry.
“Even when coronavirus restrictions can safely be lifted, there will be a continued impact and NDR relief will help businesses, including our local newspapers, get back on their feet.”