Small businesses talk rates increase with city’s politicians

Left to right: Ian Salkey Jenny Muir, Dean Russell, Anne Main MP and Cllr Beric Read.

Left to right: Ian Salkey Jenny Muir, Dean Russell, Anne Main MP and Cllr Beric Read. - Credit: Archant

Small business representatives have met with St Albans politicians to discuss issues including the business rates increase.

Members of the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) who live in the area met with Anne Main MP and the council portfolio holder for business and FSB member Beric Read.

Mrs Main said: “It was great to meet the FSB. Small businesses make up the life blood of the city, contributing to more than half of all employment and they are fully immersed in St Albans life.

“We had a great discussion around how we can build on the success of small businesses in the city, and help them tackle current issues. As a backer of small business, I will continue to give them my full support.”

The increase in business rates which have affected many of the city’s pubs was on the agenda.

As was the shortage of commercial premises, the effect of tourism on the city, crime against business, and the difficulty in finding skilled employees.

FSB representative Dean Russell said: “We had very useful discussion with Anne and Beric and we have made plans to raise awareness of the value of St Albans small businesses and how they add to the vibrancy and economic prosperity of the city.

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“She is clearly very supportive of the small business community here and the important role they play in the constituency and she listened very carefully to our concerns. Beric was happy to help in ensuring St Albans remains a great place to do business.”

The meeting was held last Friday at the district council offices.