Council Ratings change

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I have a 3 bedroom, 3 reception room property, with a extension of an extra room at the back, and an annexe which was registered for an HMO Licence on 3rd April 2009 to expire on 2nd April 2014.
The Licence is for the property to have 3 separate individuals to live upstairs, where I have put a small single electric hotplate, a microwave, a toaster and an electric kettle for their use to heat their meals and have hot drinks without any large scale cooking.
For downstairs, I rented it out to 2 different families with a small kitchen each. The entrance to all is via the main front door to the house, with access for all to use the passage and rear small paved garden for anyone to sit, and dry their washings and the children to play.
The Annexe is empty, but can be rented to a small family .
All the utilities in the building i.e. gas, electricity, water, council tax is shared and not charged to any tenants and is paid by the landlord on single bills.
For this HMO I am allowed 12 individuals with the Council Tax for this property at Band D of 1369.75 per year.
On 8th November 2010, the Ratings Officer called to visit this Property and left after 10 minutes. However within a week we received 4 separate Council Tax Bills whereby the top of the property ,the 2 ground floor and the Annexe were charged separate Band A ratings as individual Flats, to begin from 8th November.
I had not applied to have the property converted into 4 separate Flats nor is there any conversion in progress or separate supply of any utility to the building to any individuals nor is there any sufficient area per unit to warrant a legal conversion.
I did not receive any indication or any intension of this change which has been forced upon me and want to know if there is any legality of such a change or is it forced upon me due to the recent Government cuts to Council funding and thus seeking devious means to get extra revenue.
Is there any appeal I can make? Will I be going in the wrong direction and risk their wrath and then face alternate issues like infringing planning rules or other issues relating to conversion into Flats or separate units?
Are there any other members facing similar issues?
I trust to hear from you soon.
Yours faithfully,
14/12/2010 00:00

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Martin Co
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