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Thursday, 02 July 2015

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Levy could see supermarket profits ploughed into Ulverston

PROPOSALS for a supermarket levy will be discussed ahead of a legal showdown over controversial plans for an Ulverston town centre supermarket.

The issue will be discussed by South Lakeland District Council’s cabinet at the Coronation Hall in Ulverston on Wednesday.

SLDC cabinet members will debate whether to back the idea of the levy, which would see large supermarkets subjected to extra taxes – with the money raised used to boost local jobs, trade and services.

The discussion will have particular relevance for Ulverston residents ahead of a legal review into SLDC’s decision to grant planning permission for a large store in Brewery Street.

A judicial hearing is due to take place in Manchester on September 30.

Councillor Peter Thornton, SLDC leader and finance portfolio holder said: “I think out-of-town supermarkets have a fairly privileged position and we know that town centres are facing lots of challenges.

“We think this could be an opportunity to address this. If the government was to approve this then we would look to use the extra money raised from the levy and recycle it back into the town centres.”

Supporters of the scheme point to research that suggests 95 per cent of cash spent in large supermarkets is taken out of the local economy, compared with just 50 per cent from independent shops.

The supermarket levy would see extra business rates of up to 8.5 per cent imposed on any large retail outlet with a rateable value of more than £500,000.

The proposal already has the backing of 20 other local councils as well as trade unions and the campaign group, Action for Market Towns.

Once submitted, the government will have six months to respond to the application. A similar scheme to the proposed levy is already in place in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

The British Retail Consortium, which represents the UK’s largest supermarket chains, has already confirmed that any added cost from the levy would not be passed on to customers.

The SLDC cabinet will meet at the Coronation Hall at 10.30am on Wednesday.

Before the meeting, at 10am, members of the public will have the chance to ask questions and raise issues with councillors.

Have your say

Peter Thornton also needs to do some research. The opening paragraph of this article clearly refers to a town centre supermarket. He (Peter Thornton) is babbling on about out of town supermarkets. It the SLDC leader is confused I suggest he considers his remarks.

Posted by Redneck Rampage on 23 August 2014 at 11:53

Roger it works perfectly well in Northern Ireland and Scotland and has for years. The levys are normally taken at the pre tax profits, therefore tax deductible. In 2010 Tescos made a profit of 3.4 billion this levy would raise 400 million! Less than the amount that the energy companies have to pay for your free boiler and loft insulation. Please do some research before writing in.

Posted by Alan Postlethwaite on 22 August 2014 at 23:46

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