ST Helens could lose £40m in annual revenue under changes to business rates proposed by the Government, the town’s MP has warned.
Communities Secretary Eric Pickles says the change will kick-in in 2013 to give local authorities more incentive to boost business in their areas.
Business rates are currently pooled by the Treasury and redistributed to councils - according to need.
But critics argue that, under the new plan, more prosperous areas will collect more cash than they need and less prosperous areas will become more deprived.
Shaun Woodward, the MP for St Helens South and Whiston, said: “The Government have today announced their intention to cripple St Helens by a double whammy hit on the council.
“On top of the biggest programme of local government cuts in a generation, they now plan to clobber St Helens a second time by changes to business rates.”