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Concerns over retailer compensation

December 8, 2009 8:02 AM
Cllr David Kendall

Cllr David Kendall is demanding answers for retailers

Lib Dem Leader Cllr David Kendall has expressed anger and disappointment over the news that Essex County Council is not planning to offer any compensation to Brentwood retailers who have lost significant business during the recent High Street refurbishments.

He had asked the County Council to spell out what compensation was on offer to retailers after reading Eric Pickles MP's comments in the press, which stated he was backing retailers claims with Essex County Council.

Cllr Kendall was concerned that many retailers expectations had been raised by the possibility of a compensation package from Essex County Council when it may have just been wishful thinking on the part of Eric Pickles. Cllr Kendall has now been told in a letter from Essex County Council that:

"In answer to your question about compensation for Traders, the only possibility is that they might be able to apply for a rebate of business rate from Brentwood Borough Council. However they would need audited proof that any overall and lasting reduction in profit was as a direct result of the road works and not as a result of a general downturn because of the recession"

Cllr Kendall said:

"This news will come as a hammer blow to many Brentwood retailers because their chances of being able to provide all the audited proof needed to get a rebate on their business rate could be very difficult particularly during this economic recession.

"In my view Eric Pickles should have checked all the facts first before raising retailers expectations on this very important issue. It seems that Essex County Council has never had any intention of offering a compensation package"