Businesses

View all FOIs for this department below or select a sub-department to narrow down results.

Business Rates | Commercial Waste

Details:

Reference Number: 5371
Request Date: 09/01/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 Please could you provide the name of the firm that is currently contracted by your Fire & Rescue Authority to provide advice in respect of business rates mitigation and appeals. Please provide the date this contract started and the length of the agreement.
A.1 The Fire and Rescue Authority for Northumberland is part of Northumberland County Council. All County Council business rate appeals for the 2017 revaluation are dealt with by the in-house Estates Team.


 


Details:

Reference Number: 5405
Request Date: 14/01/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 Please send a full and up to date list of companies and charities that have become liable for business rates between the 15th December 18 to the 14th January 19.
 
I would like you to include -
  • Business name
  • Full address
  • Date of liability
  • Type of property
 
A.1 Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response


Details:

Reference Number: 5432
Request Date: 17/01/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 A list of commercial properties within your councils area with the following information:
 
VOA Reference Number
VOA Property Description
Business Name / Occupier Details
Current Rateable Value
Occupation Date
Full Address and Postcode
Details of any Reliefs that each property is receiving
Relief Amount
Date Relief Applied
 
I would like to receive both Limited and Sole Trader information
 
 
A.1 The Freedom of Information Act sets out various exemptions to the right of access.
 
In the present case the County Council takes the view that the information relating to your request is exempt under the following provisions;
 
Section 21 of the Act states that a public Authority does not need to provide information under section 1 of the Act if that information is reasonably accessible to the applicant by other means.
 
The information is available by accessing the following link:
http://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/


Details:

Reference Number: 5532
Request Date: 04/02/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 I would like an up to date list of businesses and charities that have become newly liable for business rates between 15th Jan 19-31st Jan 19. Please include the full business name and address, along with the property type, date of liability and RV. It would be helpful if you were to provide any brief notes which might be necessary to understand the context of the information provided, although I recognise that you are not obliged to do this. 

A.1 Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response.
 


Attachments:

Details:

Reference Number: 5567
Request Date: 08/02/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q1. I am aware that all Billing Authorities hold records of businesses that have or have not applied for small business rates relief. We would like would like to obtain a list of businesses who are not receiving small business rates relief. If this information relating to unclaimed small business rates relief is available on the website then please also indicate when the requested information (spreadsheet or website) has been updated.I therefore request a breakdown of businesses who are not receiving small business rates relief with a Rateable Value between £12,000 and £15,000 since 2017, including the following information:
A) The name of each business in respect of which non-domestic rates are payable.
B) The Rateable value of the property
C) The address of the business in respect of which non-domestic rates apply

A.1     The information is available by accessing the following links; https://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/national-non-domestic-rates-full-listing-01-nov-2018/ 

and

 https://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/national-non-domestic-rates-all-reliefs-01-nov-2018/



Details:

Reference Number: 5568
Request Date: 08/02/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

I am aware that all Billing Authorities hold records of businesses that have created a new account.

Q.1     We would like to obtain a list of businesses who are paying business rates who have created a new account within the last 12 months. If this information is available on the website then please also indicate when the requested information (spreadsheet or website) has been updated and a link to this if available.

I therefore request a breakdown including the following information:
A) The name of each business in respect of which non-domestic rates are payable. 
B) The Rateable value of the property.
C) The address of the business in respect of which non-domestic rates apply.
D) The date the account was created.

A.1    Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5572
Request Date: 08/02/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 The Ratepayer and the net Rates payable for the financial year 2010/11 and 2011/12, including any transitional relief or surcharge, for the hereditament below:

• IN VESSEL COMPOSTING STATION, ELLINGTON ROAD, ASHINGTON, NORTHD, NE63 9XS - BA Reference:   WANN11425803999

A.1      Northumberland Energy Recovery Ltd 

2010/2011 - £32,876.22

2011/2012 - £469.38



Details:

Reference Number: 5606
Request Date: 14/02/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1.   What type of council are you – i.e. Unitary, District etc.

A.1.   Unitary

Q.2.   Do you have a corporate debt team 

A.2.   Yes

Q.3.   What categories of debt are collected 

A.3.   Council Tax, Business Rates, Housing Benefit Overpayments, Sundry Debt

Q.4.   Do you collect debt on behalf of other councils or 3rd parties such as housing associations etc. 

A.4.   No

Q.5.   What systems are used for each 

A.5.   Northgate Revs & Bens, Oracle Applications

Q.6.   Do you employ internal enforcement agents, if so, how many 

A.6.   Yes, one

Q.7.   Do you utilise external enforcement agents via a 3rd party, if so when does their current contract end and when it does are you considering using internal enforcement agents

A.7.   We utilise external enforcement agents and their engagement is reviewed annually.



Details:

Reference Number: 5608
Request Date: 14/02/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 Under the Freedom of Information Act of 2000, could you please provide me with the most up-to-date list of all empty commercial (non-residential) property rates data for your local authority, and including the following fields:

A) Address

B) Rateable Value 

 

A1. In the present case the County Council takes the view that the information relating to your request is exempt under the following provisions;

Section 21 of the Act states that a public Authority does not need to provide information under section 1 of the Act if that information is reasonably accessible to the applicant by other means. 

The information is available by accessing the following links;

https://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/national-non-domestic-rates-all-exemptions-01-nov-2018/

and

https://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/national-non-domestic-rates-all-reliefs-01-nov-2018/ 

Please note that in relation to the reliefs data that the empty property start date will be either 3 or 6 months prior to the relief start date depending on the type of property.

This data is refreshed on 1 November and 1 May each year.



Details:

Reference Number: 5632
Request Date: 18/02/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 A list of all live business rates accounts with a 2017 list Rateable Value greater than or equal to £5,000. Property Reference Number (also known as Billing Authority Reference Number) of the property on which the charge is made. Please note that this is not the Rate Demand or Rate Account Number, Current rateable value, account holder name, property address, the billing address (where different to the property address), the contact telephone number and email address, the date the current ratepayer became liable for the business rates – we do not require any historical account liability dates only the current ratepayers liability start date, whether a property is empty or occupied, where a property is currently empty please provide the date the ratepayer became liable for empty rates, where there is an exemption on the account please provide the start and end date and type of exemption applied (e.g. listed building), where there is a relief on the account please provide the date it was applied and the type of relief (e.g. charity), we do not require any personal information or sole traders.

A.1 In the present case the County Council takes the view that the information relating to your request is exempt under the following provisions; Section 21 of the Act states that a public Authority does not need to provide information under section 1 of the Act if that information is reasonably accessible to the applicant by other means.

The information is available by accessing the following link: https://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/ 
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5634
Request Date: 19/02/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   I request that a copy of the following information [or documents containing the following information] be provided to me: Full list of businesses and charities that have become responsible for business rates between the 1st-19th Feb 2019. I would like to know the full business name and address, date of liability and the property type.

A.1   Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response.
 


Attachments:

Details:

Reference Number: 5813
Request Date: 28/02/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

A list of all the business premises you currently hold on file that have credits on their account including start dates and end dates of the rates account.

Q1. relating to business rate accounts with a credit balance.

A.1. We hold the information you requested. However, we are withholding that information and no longer publish this data on our website as we consider that the exemption under Section 31(1)(a) applies following the decision of the Information Commissioner's Office ICO decision FS50671834. We consider that the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information.

Q.2. relating to details of business ratepayers who have not applied for small business rate relief and/or retail relief 

A.2. The public interest test requires Northumberland County Council to confirm that we hold information in relation to business ratepayers and reliefs awarded. The County Council takes the view that the information relating to business rate reliefs is exempt under Section 21 (Information accessible by other means). The information relating to business ratepayers and reliefs is available by accessing the following links;

https://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/national-non-domestic-rates-full-listing-01-nov-2018/ and https://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/national-non-domestic-rates-all-reliefs-01-nov-2018/

This data will be refreshed in May 2019. 



Details:

Reference Number: 5705
Request Date: 04/03/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 I am aware that all Billing Authorities hold records of businesses that have or have not applied for small business rates relief. We would like would like to obtain a list of businesses who are not receiving small business rates relief. If this information relating to unclaimed small business rates relief is available on the website then please also indicate when the requested information (spreadsheet or website) has been updated. I therefore request a breakdown of businesses who are not receiving small business rates relief with a Rateable Value between £12,000 and £15,000 since 2017, including the following information:

A) The name of each business in respect of which non-domestic rates are payable.
B) The Rateable value of the property
C) The address of the business in respect of which non-domestic rates apply

A.1 The Freedom of Information Act sets out various exemptions to the right of access. In the present case the County Council takes the view that the information relating to your request is exempt under the following provisions; Section 21 of the Act states that a public Authority does not need to provide information under section 1 of the Act if that information is reasonably accessible to the applicant by other means. The information is available by accessing the following link: http://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/
 
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5716
Request Date: 06/03/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 I hereby request a list of unclaimed business rate credit balances. Please can you also include accounts where a 'write on' has been used to cancel an overpayment which has not since been reversed. Please can this information be provided to me in an Excel Spreadsheet, including the following fields:

• Ratepayer name 
• Property Address 
• Billing Authority Reference 
• Amount of credit/write on 
• The period or financial year of the credit/write on

I appreciate that properties where the ratepayer is an individual would be excluded from my request. In such cases, please provide the remaining information with the Ratepayer either blank or listed as 'individual'

A.1 We hold the information you requested. However we are withholding that information since we consider that the exemption under Section 31(1)(a) applies. 

31 Law enforcement.
(1) Information which is not exempt information by virtue of section 30 is exempt information if its disclosure under this Act would, or would be likely to, prejudice—
(a) the prevention or detection of crime,

We consider that the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5735
Request Date: 08/03/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   I would like a full list of businesses that have become liable for business rate between the 15th Feb to the 8th March 19 if possible please.

Please include the following

*  Full business name
*  Full property address
*  Date of liability
*  Property type

A.1   Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response.
 


Attachments:

Details:

Reference Number: 5792
Request Date: 19/03/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Please consider this request regarding Business Rates Accounts in line with the ‘Freedom of Information Act 2000’.

Q.1   Please could you provide the information below for every open/live account within your charging authority, preferably on an emailed Excel spreadsheet, along with the date the data was extracted from your system.
Details of any relief applied to the account including type, amount and date the relief was applied
Details of any applied exemptions where applicable
Current account holder/ratepayer
Property reference number
Account start date
Address and postal code
Correspondence or billing address
Account number
Current Rateable value (RV)
An indicator as to whether the property is occupied or empty

A.1   The information is available by accessing the following links;
 
https://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/national-non-domestic-rates-full-listing-01-nov-2018/
 
https://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/national-non-domestic-rates-all-exemptions-01-nov-2018/
 
https://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/national-non-domestic-rates-all-reliefs-01-nov-2018/
 
This information was extracted as at 1st November 2018 and will be refreshed 1st May 2019.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5804
Request Date: 21/03/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 I am aware that all Billing Authorities hold records of businesses that have or have not applied for small business rates relief. We would like would like to obtain a list of businesses who are not receiving small business rates relief. If this information relating to unclaimed small business rates relief is available on the website then please also indicate when the requested information (spreadsheet or website) has been updated. I therefore request a breakdown of businesses who are not receiving small business rates relief with a Rateable Value between £12,000 and £15,000 since 2017, including the following information:

A) The name of each business in respect of which non-domestic rates are payable.

B) The Rateable value of the property

C) The address of the business in respect of which non-domestic rates apply


A.1 In the present case the County Council takes the view that the information relating to your request is exempt under the following provisions; Section 21 of the Act states that a public Authority does not need to provide information under section 1 of the Act if that information is reasonably accessible to the applicant by other means.

The information is available by accessing the following links;
 
https://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/national-non-domestic-rates-full-listing-01-nov-2018/
 
and
 
https://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/national-non-domestic-rates-all-reliefs-01-nov-2018/
 
This data will be refreshed May 2019.

 


Details:

Reference Number: 5805
Request Date: 21/03/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   I am aware that all Billing Authorities hold records of businesses that have created a new account. We would like to obtain a list of businesses who are paying business rates who have created a new account within the last 12 months. If this information is available on the website then please also indicate when the requested information (spreadsheet or website) has been updated and a link to this if available. I therefore request a breakdown including the following information:

 A) The name of each business in respect of which non-domestic rates are payable. 
 B) The Rateable value of the property.
 C) The address of the business in respect of which non-domestic rates apply.
 D) The date the account was created.

A.1   Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5809
Request Date: 21/03/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   Please specify whether you have an existing contract(s) for Enforcement Agent (Bailiff) Services for Council Tax, Business Rates and PCN debt collection and which of the three types of debt collection mentioned above it covers?

Type of contract

Q.1a) Single contract for Enforcement Agent (Bailiff) Services for Council Tax, Business Rates and PCNs
A.1a) We do not have a Single contract for Enforcement Agent (Bailiff) Services for Council Tax, Business Rates and PCNs.

Q.1b) Separate contracts for Council Tax, Business Rates and PCNs
A.1b) We do not have separate contracts for Council Tax and Business Rates
 
Q.1c) A combined contract covering debt collection for two of the debts mentioned and another for the third (please state the combination)
A.1c) We have a single SLA in place covering debt collection for Council Tax and Business Rates.

Q.1d) No contract for collection of one or more types of the debts mentioned above (please specify which)
A.1d) N/A 

Q.2       Please provide the dates that all of your existing contracts for Enforcement Agent (Bailiff) Services for Council Tax, Business Rates and PCN debt collection will expire
Type of enforcement service
council tax
business tax
PCN’s

A.2 Type of enforcement service
council tax There is no set expiry date. Services provision is reviewed annually.
business tax There is no set expiry date. Services provision is reviewed annually.
PCN’s Ongoing

Q.3        Please state the name of all Enforcement Agencies appointed by the above contracts

Type of enforcement service
council tax
business tax
PCN’s

A.3 Type of enforcement service
council tax - 1. Rossendales. 2. Thoburns Enforcement Services
business tax - 1. Rossendales. 2. Thoburns Enforcement Services
PCN’s -  Rossendales

Q.4        How many debt collection instructions were issued in a) 2016, b) 2017 c) 2018 to the Enforcement Agencies mentioned since the contract with them was put in place?
A.4 Please see the attached document

Q.5        If you don’t have a current contract with an Enforcement Agency in place, please could you specify:

Q.5a)     The process by which your council collects unpaid Council Tax, Business Rates and PCNs. Please make clear the bodies or companies responsible for the delivery of this service
A.5a) please see above

Q.5b)     The number of debt collection instructions issued to the bodies or companies delivering these services on an annual basis over the last five years
A.5b) Not applicable to PCNs
      b) please see above (Council Tax & Business Rates)

Q.6      Do you engage Enforcement Services under a Service Level Agreement and if so, what date is the contract due to be reviewed?
Use of Service Level Agreement (Yes/No)
Review date of the Service Level Agreement

A.6 Use of Service Level Agreement (Yes/No) -  Yes
Review date of the Service Level Agreement - as above, ongoing.
Annually each April for Council Tax and Business Rates. 
Review date of the Service Level Agreement (PCN’s) - as above ongoing.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5866
Request Date: 02/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1    I would like and full and up to date list of business’s / companies / charities, that have become newly liable for business rates between the 15th March 2109 to the 31st March 2019. I would like the full business name and address / date of liability / type of premises.

A.1   Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5883
Request Date: 05/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1    NCC emails/ notes of meetings  regarding the letting of the premises when reconstructing the bridge.

A.1     Please see the attached document.  We have no other correspondence as the gentleman who was involved with this has left the authority and we don't have access to his emails.

Q.2     A list of properties in NCC area that are / have been subject to rating reductions , either full or partial due to building works.

A.2 The Council do not hold this type of information. We are advised by the Valuation Office Agency (VOA) only of the Increase / Reduction and the effective date only.

Q.3     List of business rated properties that received a reduction due to the Rothbury bridge works and or Cragend  landslide roadworks

A.3 Our records show 48 properties that appear to have had a temporary rateable value reduction because of the Cragend Landslide. We are not aware of any specific reductions for the bridge works. The VOA may have specific information on this type of data?

Q.4     Internal correspondence / e mails regarding the rates on this property regarding meetings with your Mr Prince

A.4 Please see the attached document.


Details:

Reference Number: 5910
Request Date: 09/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   total number of all assessments liable for non-domestic (business) rates in the local authority area during 2017/18 and 2018/19. 

Q.2   in the financial years 2017/18 and 2018/19 please advise:-
I) total number of summons issued in the Magistrates Court for non-payment either in whole or and/or in part of non-domestic (business) rates.
II) total number of Liability Orders obtained in the Magistrates Court for non-payment either in whole or in part of non-domestic (business) rates.
III) total number of referrals made to Enforcement Officers (Bailiffs) to enforce Liability Orders for non-payment either in whole or in part of non-domestic (business) rates.

If my request is denied in whole and/or in part, I ask that you justify all deletions by reference to specific exemptions of the Act. I will also expect you to release all non-exempt material. I reserve the right to appeal any decision to withhold information and/or to charge fees from which this request should be exempt.
 
A.1 - A.2   Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5911
Request Date: 09/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

I would like to request the following information about business rates accounts that have credit please:
  • Property reference numbers
  • Ratepayers
  • Start dates
  • Credit information
I am aware that the Account Name may be considered personal in some instances so I ask that in these cases you supply the rest of the information provided with the Account name redacted. Also, if there are any aspects of our request you cannot disclose information for, could you please identify them with a reason. 

Exemptions

In the present case the County Council takes the view that the information relating to your request is exempt under the following provisions; 31 Law enforcement.(1) Information which is not exempt information by virtue of section 30 is exempt information if its disclosure under this Act would, or would be likely to, prejudice—(a) the prevention or detection of crime,

 


Details:

Reference Number: 5922
Request Date: 11/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   How many cases were referred to bailiffs each year, and how does this split between:
a.     Council tax, PCN and other debt recovery
b.     Insourced vs outsourced to a third party provider
c.     Per year (2015-18)
 
A.1   PCN (Insourced)
2015 - 0
2016 - 0
2017 - 0
2018 - 0

Council Tax (Insourced)
2015 - 3759
2016 - 4112
2017 - 5066
2018 - 4506

Other debt recovery (Insourced)
2015 - 0
2016 - 0
2017 - 0
2018 - 0

Council Tax (Outsourced)
2015 - 0
2016 - 0
2017 - 0
2018 - 0

PCN (Outsourced)
2015 - 1751
2016 - 719
2017 - 1062
2018 - 1344

Other debt recovery (Outsourced)*
2015 - 305
2016 - 250
2017 - 277
2018 - 206

Insourced total
2015 - 3759
2016 - 4112
2017 - 5066
2018 - 4506

Outsourced Total
2015 - 2056
2016 - 969
2017 - 1339
2018 - 1550

Grand Total
2015 - 5815
2016 - 5081
2017 - 6405
2018 - 6056

*National Non-Domestic Rates

Q.2  Which, if any, third party providers did you use for these bailiff services, and how many cases did each manage each year (2015-18)?
 
a.     Split by Council tax, PCN and other debt recovery
 
A.2      Rossendales (PCN)
2015 - 1751
2016 - 719
2017 - 1062
2018 - 1344

Rossendales (Council Tax)
2015 - 3192
2016 - 3232
2017 - 3734
2018 - 2861

Rossendales (Other Debt Recovery)*
2015 - 110
2016 - 52
2017 - 129
2018 - 95

Thoburns Enforcement Services (Council Tax)
2015 - 567
2016 - 880
2017 - 1332
2018 - 1645

Thoburns Enforcement Services (Other Debt Recovery)*
2015 - 195
2016 - 198
2017 - 148
2018 - 111

*National Non-Domestic Rates
Note: the values shown for Council Tax and National Non-Domestic Rates relate to each financial year, i.e. 2015/16, 2016/17, 2017/18 & 2018/19

Q.3   What was the total cost of parking enforcement services (e.g. traffic wardens, towing, clamping etc.) per year (2015-18)?
 
a.     Split between insourced vs outsourced to a third party provider
 
A.3   Please see our website for a breakdown of income and expenditure on the authority's on-street and off-street parking accounts.

https://www.northumberland.gov.uk/About/Transparency.aspx#transparency
Northumberland County Council - Transparency
Transparency. As a public-funded organisation, we have a duty to residents to be transparent in how council tax money is spent, our business operations and outcomes.
www.northumberland.gov.uk

Q.4   Which, if any, third party providers do you use to manage parking enforcement services? Please could you disclose the total amount spent with each provider per year (2015-18)
 
A.4   N/A
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5937
Request Date: 15/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

I am writing to request information related to new liabilities for business rates within your council area.  I would like the following in excel format please..
Q.1   Full list of businesses that have become liable for business rates between the 1-15th April 2019
Q.2   Full business name and address, date of liability and property type and the rate payer. 
 
A.1 & A.2   Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response.


Details:

Reference Number: 5945
Request Date: 16/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1    The number of times between 1st April 2018 and 31st March 2019, or the nearest available twelve month period, that private bailiffs/enforcement agents have been instructed to enforce debts to the local authority relating to each of the following;

Q.1a.    Council tax
A.1a.       4506

Q.1b.    Parking
A.1b.       1036

Q.1c.    Housing Benefit overpayments
A.1c.       0

Q.1d.    Business Rates
A.1d.       206

Q.1e.    Commercial Rents
A.1e.       0

Q.1f.     Any other debt types, including any other overpayments
A.1f.        0

By “private bailiffs/enforcement agents” we mean those who are self-employed or who work for private companies, including as high court enforcement officers.  Please include cases where local authority employees have visited a property to enforce a warrant of control. 

Q.2    Do you signpost residents to one or more free debt advice agencies as part of your collections process?  (Yes/No) If so, which charities?

A.2   Yes.   A fill list can be found at 
https://www.northumberland.gov.uk/Tax/Debt.aspx#advicefordealingwithdebt 

Q.3     Have you adopted the Standard Financial Statement (or Common Financial Statement) as a tool for objectively assessing income and expenditure as part of your collections process? (Yes/No)

A.3   No, although it may be used as a point of reference.

I  think this is primarily used by debt advice organisation such as Citizen’s Advice.

Q.4     Do you have a formal policy in place for dealing with residents in vulnerable circumstances as part of your collections process? (Yes/No)

A.4   The Council has a Corporate Debt Recovery Policy which is updated annually.

Q.5    Do you currently have a policy of exempting recipients of Council Tax Support from the use of bailiff action? (Yes/No)

A.5   No.

Q.6    Have you adopted the Citizens Advice/Local Government Association Council Tax Protocol? (Yes/No)

A.6   No. We will be meeting with Citizens Advice to sign the protocol.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5950
Request Date: 16/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   Would it be possible to request a breakdown of the amount of unpaid / outstanding council tax from the year 2013/14 to present day per council tax year? 

A.1   First figure is arrears as at 31 March of the relevant year and the second figure is arrears for that year as at 31 March 2019

2013/14 - £4,232,419 - £362,388
2014/15 - £3,962,967 - £519,679
2015/16 - £3,805,064 - £689,353
2016/17 - £3,891,089 - £1,081,649
2017/18 - £3,809,307 - £1,758,864
2018/19 - £3,935,356

Q.2   A breakdown for the same period for the amount of unpaid council tax that has been written off per council tax year, also the number of prosecutions brought by you between 2013/14 and now for unpaid council tax. 

A.2       2013/14 - £780,244
2014/15 - £936,426
2015/16 - £530,480
2016/17 - £867,864
2017/18 - £876,977
2018/19 - £476,560

Q.3   Finally, can I get a break down of % of unpaid council tax per council tax band and type of property eg privately owned, social etc.

Q.3   Unable to provide data
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5988
Request Date: 29/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Please provide the following information in respect of properties that have had an empty rate charge levied at any time since 1st April 2012.   
 
Q.1   The property addresses and property reference numbers.
Q.2   The ratepayer name(s) – excluding those exempt under Section 40 of the Act.
Q.3   Start and end date of the empty period for which empty rates have been levied.

A.1 - A.3   Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds part of the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response.
 
Please note that I am only seeking information in relation to periods where an empty rate has been charged on a property, and not for any periods where the property is empty and an exemption has been applied.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5989
Request Date: 25/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1     In terms of the Freedom of Information Act of 2000, and subject to section 40(2) on personal data, could you please provide me with a complete and up-to-date list of all business (non-residential) property rates data for your local authority, and including the following fields:
- Billing Authority Property Reference Code (linking the property to the VOA database reference) 
- Firm's Trading Name (i.e. property occupant) 
- Full Property Address (Number, Street, Postal Code, Town) 
- Occupied / Vacant 
- Date of Occupation / Vacancy 
- Actual annual rates charged (in Pounds)
If you are unable to provide an absolute “Occupation / Vacancy” status, please provide the Exemptions and / or Reliefs that a particular property may be receiving

A.1     Section 21 of the Act states that a public Authority does not need to provide information under section 1 of the Act if that information is reasonably accessible to the applicant by other means. 

The information is available by accessing the following links;
 
https://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/national-non-domestic-rates-full-listing-01-may-2019/
 
https://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/national-non-domestic-rates-all-reliefs-01-may-2019/
 
https://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/national-non-domestic-rates-all-exemptions-01-may-2019/
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5993
Request Date: 30/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   I would like a full and up to date list of businesses/ companies/ charities that have become newly liable for business rates from the 15/04/19-30/04/2019.  Please include the following

* Full business name/liable party
* Full address including postcode of property they have recently become liable for
* Date of new liability
* Type of property

A.1   Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response.


Details:

Reference Number: 6049
Request Date: 09/05/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1      Can the council confirm their current number of Long Term Empty Properties as of the 8th May (those domestic properties which have been empty for six months or older)

A.1 As at 8th May we have 2142 properties which have been vacant for more than 6 months

Q.2      What work is the council currently undertaking or planning to undertake around reducing their long term empty properties in 2019?

A.2 The council are continuously dealing with the issue of empty properties.  The work involves engagement with owners of empty properties to assist in bringing the properties back into use. Depending  on the level of intervention needed the options vary. The council currently have funding available in order to renovate the property and take responsibility for a period of 7 years.  Other options include advice around letting the property through our accreditation scheme and assistance with finding suitable tenants. Regular mail outs are done to notify owners of empty properties as to how the council can assist and advice regarding additional council tax charges. The council also hold regular landlord development forums which are open to owners of empty properties also if they require specific advice from the team.

Q.3      During 2018 did you undertake any work around reducing your Long Term Empty Properties.  If you did was this done using internal resource or a third party? 

A.3 The council have been involved in the Empty Homes Programme supported by Homes England.  Grant funding has been available for the council to purchase empty properties and also carry out Empty Dwelling Management Orders.  This has proved successful in bringing back into use some of the council’s most problematic properties.
 
Q.4      If yes is the answer to question three, did the council review every single long term property

A.4 There are 2142 long term empty properties in the council, some of which have had little or no impact on the community.  The Council mainly reacts to the properties which are causing a nuisance to the community or where the owners of the properties request assistance.

Q.5      Does the reduction of empty homes in the council area form part of your Housing strategy? 

A.5 Yes, Long term empty properties are a priority for the council and bringing properties back into use forms an element of the private sector housing strategy.

Q.6      Does the council have a budget in place to help support the reduction of empty properties?

A.6 Currently yes, there is specific funding available to assist with the purchase and repair scheme and t carry out Empty Dwelling Management Orders.

Q.7      How much did the council spend on temporary accommodation during 2018?

A.7       The annual spend detailed under the Temporary Accommodation budget for 2018/19  was £171,220

Q.8      Does the council offer financial support /loans to Long Term Empty property owners to help them bring properties back into use?

A.8 As discussed in Q6 funding is available to carry out Empty Dwelling Management Orders however this money is not given directly to the owner.


Details:

Reference Number: 6054
Request Date: 10/05/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   Could you please supply in the form of a spreadsheet all non domestic properties showing any reliefs applied including charity, small business and retail rate relief. Please include sole trader addresses. Please include property description, address, business name (in the case of limited companies) rateable value.

A.1   The information is available by accessing the following links;
 
https://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/national-non-domestic-rates-full-listing-01-may-2019/
 
and
 
https://opendata.northumberland.gov.uk/datasets/national-non-domestic-rates-all-reliefs-01-may-2019/
 


Details:

Reference Number: 6056
Request Date: 13/05/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   Please tell me for the financial year 2018-2019 and 2017-2018 the total income from the charges imposed at Northumberland Waste Management Centres.

I am aware that these sites are managed by private companies that will inevitably retain a portion of this revenue stream. I want to know the revenues flowing back to NCC during these two financial years.

A.1   The Council received £68,000 in 2017/18 and £67,000 in 2018/19 from charging residents to deposit soil, rubble and plasterboard at 12 Household Waste Recovery Centres (HWRCs). The Council has no obligation to accept non household waste free of charge at its HWRCs, some Councils chose not to accept this material at all. Northumberland County Council seeks a contribution from residents towards its costs of accepting this material, in order to continue to provide a low cost and convenient means of disposal for residents with small quantities, and to encourage residents with larger quantities to seek out viable alternatives eg dumpy bag collection service, skips, and private waste contractors.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 6080
Request Date: 16/05/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   I would like information with regards to businesses that are newly liable for business rates between the 30th April to the 15th May 2019.  Please include the full business name and full address including the postcode, type of premises, Rateable value and also the date that they became liable.

A.1   Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response.
 


Attachments:

Details:

Reference Number: 6121
Request Date: 24/05/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   Could you please tell us/send us the numbers and addresses list of properties in Craster/Dunstan Parish, Alnwick, Northumberland which get free council/business tax please?

A.1   Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response


Details:

Reference Number: 6938
Request Date: 08/05/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1    Could you please tell me how many holiday home lets we have in Craster this year please altogether and those that pay no business/council tax please as of today 07/05/2019?

A.1    There are 49 holiday cottages, 30 receive 100% relief.


Details:

Reference Number: 6610
Request Date: 03/09/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Service Budgets for Financial Year 2018/19:
Service Area
Council Tax Processing
Benefits Processing
Non Domestic Rates Processing
Leadership
System Admin & Support
Total Revenues & Benefits

Average Service staffing including vacancies - In relation to service budget - Financial Year 2018/19
Council Tax
Number of FTE in Council Tax processing
Number of heads in Council Tax processing
Benefits
Number of FTE in Benefits processing
Number of heads in Benefits processing
Non Domestic Rates
Number of FTE in Non Domestic Rates processing
Number of heads in Non Domestic Rates processing
Leadership & Support
Number of FTE in Revenues & Benefits leadership
Number of heads in Revenues & Benefits leadership
Number of FTE in System Admin & Support
Number of heads in System Admin & Support
Total
Total Revenues & Benefits

Revenues & Benefits Calls in financial year 2018/19
Council Tax
Are customer service calls handled within the back office processing teams for Council Tax? (Yes /No)
How many FTE support call handling function if separate from processing for Council Tax?
What were the Council Tax calls offered volumes  for 2018/19?
What were the Council Tax calls answered  volumes for 2018/19?
Benefits
Are customer service calls handled within the back office processing teams for Benefits?  (Yes /No)
How many FTE support call handling function if separate from processing for Benefits?
What were the Benefits calls offered volumes for 2018/19?
What were the Benefits calls answered volumes for 2018/19?
Non Domestic Rates
Are customer service calls handled within the back office processing teams for Non Domestic Rates?  (Yes /No)
How many FTE support call handling function if separate from processing for Non Domestic Rates?
What were the Non Domestic Rates calls offered  volumes for 2018/19?
What were the Non Domestic Rates call answered volumes for 2018/19?

Other Revenues & Benefits Customer Service Information - for financial year 2018/19
Face to Face
Are Council Tax face to face enquiries handled within back office processing teams for Council Tax? (Yes /No)
How many Council Tax Face to Face visits in 2018/19?
Are Benefits face to face  enquiries handled within back office processing teams for Council Tax? (Yes /No)
How many Benefits Face to Face visits in 2018/19?
Are Non Domestic Rates Face to Face enquiries handled within back office processing teams for Council Tax? (Yes /No)
How many Non Domestic Rates Face to Face visits in 2018/19?
Home Visits
How many Council Tax home visits were completed in 2018/19?
How many Benefits home visits were completed in 2018/19?
How many Non Domestic Rates home visits were completed in 2018/19?
Inspections
Are Council Tax inspections carried out by your customer service teams or are they separate?
How many Council Tax inspections were completed in 2018/19?
Are Non Domestic Rates inspections carried out by your customer service teams or are they separate?
How many Non Domestic Rates inspections were completed in 2018/19?
Online Forms
How many Council Tax online forms were received in 2018/19?
How many Benefits online forms were received in 2018/19?
How many Non Domestic Rates online forms were received in 2018/19?

Performance Targets
Council Tax
Please list below what targets are set within Council Tax split down by groupings of work  that you apply
Do the above Council Tax targets include pended documents as well as completed? (Yes/No)
Benefits
Please list below what targets are set within Benefits split down by groupings of work  that you apply
Do the above Council Tax targets include pended documents as well as completed?  (Yes/No)
Non Domestic Rates
Please list below what targets are set within Non Domestic rates split down by groupings of work  that you apply
Do the above Council Tax targets include pended documents as well as completed?  (Yes/No)

Document Management System Work Volumes - for financial year 2018/19
Service Area
Overall volume of work received
Current volume of outstanding work
What are the current pending rates for each service line (%)?
Current volume of pended work in DMS
% of outstanding work that is pended

Document Management System Work Volumes - for financial year 2018/19
Service Area
Overall volume of work received
Current volume of outstanding work
What are the current pending rates for each service line (%)?
Current volume of pended work in DMS
% of outstanding work that is pended


A.1     Section 43 is a qualified exemption which means that the information falling within the exemption still has to be released unless the public interest in disclosure is outweighed by the public interest in maintaining the exemption. 

The reasons why the public interest favours withholding the information is that under paragraph 52 of the Commercial interests we feel that this will impact on other negotiations.