Important information for NW Community Amateur Sports Clubs

United Utilities have forwarded the following information regarding financial relief for truly amateur sports slubs:  

Last year United Utilities introduced a new way of calculating surface water and highway drainage charges for non-household measured customers.

The new calculation method, known as ‘site area charging’, takes account of the size of the area that needs to be drained, including the buildings and car parks (but does not include grassed and other permeable areas). Prior to April 2008 the charges for surface water and highway drainage were based on either the rateable value of a property or a standing charge based on the size of the meter.

The United Utilities plan is to introduce site area charging over a three year period by gradually phasing out rateable values and standing charges. However it has become clear that community amateur sports clubs have been particularly affected by the speed of transition to this new charging method, which in some cases has led to high increases in their bills.

In view of this, community amateur sports clubs can apply to revert to their previous method of charge, either rateable value or standing charge for the new financial year 2009-2010 if they meet certain criteria. This will allow time to investigate a long term solution to the issues being faced by community amateur sports clubs in readiness for the financial year 2010-2011.      
                                                      
We initially believed that CASC registration, an existing system administered by HM Revenue and Customs, would provide suitable qualifying criteria for clubs. However, on further investigation it emerged there is relatively low penetration of CASC in these clubs which meant that using CASC registration alone would not be sufficient.

We have therefore created a series of simple questions which allows us to include those clubs who meet the “spirit of a CASC” without them having to formally apply for CASC status with HM Revenue and Customs. The attached form explains these criteria in more detail.

We hope these additional efforts help to bring some financial relief to those clubs that are truly amateur and serving the needs of their local community. If any clubs have questions about how to fill out the forms we will be happy to help.

We continue to be committed to site area charging as a fairer way for charging for surface water and highway drainage as it is based upon the service provided rather than location. It also encourages customers to consider alternative, more sustainable methods of dealing with their surface water.

We are writing to clubs that we have identified from our billing system to invite applications but you may get enquiries from your own members or wish to promote the application process. I hope this letter gives you the information needed. More details, including ways to reduce the charges are on the United Utilities website www.unitedutilities.com/sitearea. There is also a Q&A sheet for information.

Please email Jane Kenwright if you have any questions.  
 

 

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