THANK you to all those that have contacted me regarding the Andover BID following my letter in the Andover Advertiser (Letters, October 5, ‘Divisions made’).

Previously I said I would not take a position. However, one exchange with a local business owner has given me a change of mind.

They said: “Why is it that when big business is soaking up town centre trade and killing our high streets, do our local councils seek to increase the already crippling taxation on small business owners in our town centre?”

I have to say I find this logic so compelling I have to stand firmly with those small local businesses who are against such an increase in taxation.

Further, I find it incomprehensible that a Conservative local council with their confederates the local Lib Dems are pushing this new tax through.

Further analysis of the voting process also gives me grave cause for concern. Of the 500 odd businesses in the Andover town centre only 250 are allowed to vote. If we assume that only 50 per cent vote that leaves 125 votes.

Of the businesses allowed to vote at least 13, yes 13 votes will go to the Conservative run council TVBC that are pushing this new tax. Why?

Because of various car parks they own in town and other assets they own in the area.

I ask you how is this even remotely fair? At the very least I call upon the TVBC to relinquish 12 of their votes.

With an already functioning Town Centre Partnership (without this new tax) in place that put on a fantastic motor festival last Sunday it would appear we are throwing the baby out with the bathwater, at all and any cost to struggling local small business.

Cllr Richard Rowles, Andover