§ Mr. Nicholas Bennett
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what representations he has received about the fact that empty properties lent to charities for short periods without charge result in the owner of the property being assessed for the full uniform business rate for the financial year; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Grist
I have received no such representations.
The owners of unoccupied property are, unless the property is exempt, required to pay rates at 50 per cent. of the liability that would apply if the property were occupied. If a property subject to empty property rates is temporarily occupied for fewer than six weeks, and then again becomes unoccupied, the owners' liability at the concessionary empty property rate continues to apply.