George Osborne's passing of business rates into the jurisdiction of local councils is not a gift to the people, as he would like us to believe, but yet another gift to the big businesses who payroll his party. He knows full well that local councils will start reducing rates for major companies in order to persuade them to locate and relocate to their regions. Councils will start undercutting the rates charged by rival councils and the revenue from business rates will be reduced drastically. Only the rich councils will prosper from this anarchy. Poorer regions will become even more impoverished.
Those of us in the north east of England have already felt the pain of having a neighbour with devolved rate setting power and a large public purse. We keep losing out to Scotland whose government is more than eager to offer the fat cats of big business very attractive deals which our councils just can not match, the Amazon case being a prime example. The setting of business rates by the English government provides some protection for the regions from being bullied by big business into giving away that which should be paid for. Osborne's plan will get rid of this protection and will result only in his friends, the rich, getting even richer. But then what else would you expect from a man who would so willingly and fervently do business with torturers and murderers.
Whatever you do, George, don't mention the Square.