§ Harry Cohen
To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what plans he has to take steps to enable business rate income to remain with local authorities; how much business rate was collected by the London Borough of(a) Waltham Forest and (b) Redbridge in the last year for which figures are available; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Mr. Raynsford
The amounts of business rates collected in 2002–03, the most recent year for which figures are available, are:
- (a) London Borough of Waltham Forest: £35.412 million
- (b) London Borough of Redbridge: £38.511 million
These figures are taken from the QRC4 return from each authority.
The Office of Deputy Prime Minister is planning to introduce the Local Authority Business Growth Incentives scheme from April 2005. This scheme will allow retention of some business rates revenue by local authorities whose areas experience business rates 99W growth above a predetermined threshold. We shall issue a consultation paper about the preferred scheme in the summer.
The Balance of Funding Review, which I chair, has received evidence for and against the complete return of business rates to local authority control. The Review is due to report in the summer.