Business Rates Relief Application - Guidance Notes

Community centre/Village hall

With effect from 1st April 1996, the Council has agreed the policy of allowing an additional relief of rates to organisations already in receipt of mandatory relief under sub-section (2) of the Act and who are mainly concerned with working with youths which the Council has defined as under 19 years of age or who provide community facilities in village halls and community centres.

Relief will be for a period of 2 years subject to continuing qualification which may be verified by enquiry from time to time.

Recreational club

With effect from 1st April 1996, the Council have decided to allow 80% relief of rates to recreation clubs which do not have a licence to sell alcohol.

Athletic/Sporting club

Under the terms of Section 27 of the Abolition of Domestic Rates, etc. (Scotland) Act 1987, the rating authority may be compensated, through the Revenue Support Grant, for relief of rates granted under the provisions of paragraph (c) of sub-section (5) of Section 4 of the Local Government (Financial Provisions, etc.) Scotland Act 1962 to certain sports clubs.

The Council has decided to grant 100% discretionary relief of rates for a period of 2 years from 1st April 1996 (assuming provision to fully compensate Rating Authorities is contained in future Revenue Support Grants) to all clubs who meet the definition of "sports club" as set out by the Scottish Sports Association and circulated by the Scottish Office as follows:

"land and heritage occupied exclusively or principally for athletic or sporting purposes by a members club association or company operated on a non commercial basis where no profits are distributed in any way other than for the benefit of the membership and where the sale or supply of alcoholic liquor is merely a social adjunct to the said principal athletic or sporting purposes; and the income derived from such sale or supply is used solely for the said purposes".

"Athletic or sporting purposes" are such activities as may be recognised by the Scottish Sports Council as being eligible for grant aid through the National Governing Body of the sport.

"Members' Club, Association or Company" means a body of people whose operation is not conducted for profit in a commercial sense and where the assets of the Club are not owned nor are the property of an individual or group of individuals other than the entire ordinary membership and where the principal objects of the body declared in its Constitution of Rules are the provision of facilities and/or encouragement or participation in such an activity as is defined in the definition of athletic or sporting purposes above.

Membership - means such members of the members club, association or company as primarily full, ordinary or playing members whether junior or senior and any social or non playing members shall only be admitted by rules of the body which limits significantly their proportion of the total membership.

With effect from 1st April 1996, to grant 80% discretionary relief to any body occupying premises "for the purposes of a club...or other organisation not established or conducted for profit and which are wholly or mainly used for purposes of recreation".

Equal opportunities

From 1st April 2007, any organisation claiming discretionary relief requires to demonstrate they have an Equal Opportunities Policy. Reference to this should be included in the constitution or held as a separate policy.