Local businesses and town centres

Mike Wood: It is a pleasure to be called to participate in my first Westminster Hall debate under your chairmanship, Mr Crausby. I join my right hon. and hon. Friends in congratulating Richard Burden on securing the debate on this extremely important topic. As the son of a west midlands police officer, who served for nearly 30 years in West Midlands police and before that in the Birmingham force, through the ’60s, ’70s, ’80s and mid-’90s, this issue is important to me personally.

Mike Wood: It seems slightly rude to intrude on the private squabbles between the Labour and SNP Front Benches, but I am delighted to speak in support of the Finance Bill, which implements many of the measures in the summer Budget.

Last week’s Black Country Day celebrated our region’s industrial heritage, and the measures announced in the Budget will do much to develop the framework for

Mike Wood: The business rates system is one of the major barriers to competitiveness for small and medium-sized enterprises. What plans do Ministers have to reform and alleviate some of that burden?

 

Sajid Javid The Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills

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