Business tenants in Carmarthenshire could be eligible for further rent reductions

STRUGGLING council business tenants in Carmarthenshire could be eligible for a rent reduction in July and August.

Council chiefs have agreed to offer a 50% concession this month and 25% concession in August for businesses which can prove their turnover was down by half in July.

Council business tenants didn’t pay any rent in April, May, and June, which could leave the authority around £800,000 out of pocket unless it can be claimed back from the Welsh Government.

The concessionary decision for July and August was taken by the council’s executive board behind closed doors for financial reasons.

Minutes from the meeting said the coronavirus pandemic was having a significant effect on businesses and added: “With Carmarthenshire Council having a significant business portfolio with one of the highest tenancy occupation rates in Wales, members also considered the potential revenue implications for the authority as set out in the report.”

Asked by the Local Democracy Reporter Service if the council was confident of reclaiming the lost rental income, a council spokeswoman said the Welsh Government has been “very supportive” in respect of financial challenges.

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“The Welsh Government is in the process of reviewing income loss claims for the first three months which will include the rent loss, confirmation of the final support with be issued in due course,” she said.

It was too early to say, she said, how many tenants would qualify for further concessions.

Executive board member, Cllr Glynog Davies, declared a personal interest at the meeting as he is a director of a company based in a building owned by the council.

Authorities across Wales have been taking similar rental decisions, with Swansea Council agreeing to various discounts for traders at the city’s indoor market last week.

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