The Business Secretary Alok Sharma and Minister for Regional Growth and Local Government, Simon Clarke have announced that another £617 million would be made available to Local Authorities to distribute to small businesses.
This is the latest offering from the Government to help businesses during this difficult time due to COVID-19 outbreak.
The main aim seems to be to address the needs of those businesses that may have missed out on the previous grants. It will cover those who pay council tax rather than business rates.
The ministers are asking local authorities to prioritise businesses in shared spaces, regular market traders, small charity properties that would meet the criteria for Small Business Rates Relief, and bed and breakfasts that pay council tax rather than business rates.
However, it seems that local authorities may choose to make payments to other businesses based on local economic need because as the name of grant suggests the local authorities has full discretion.
How do you qualify
To qualify for the grant, the following must apply
- Business must be small i.e. under 50 employees
- They must also be able to demonstrate that they have seen a significant drop of income due to Coronavirus restriction measures.
How much are the Grants?
There will be three levels of grant payments.
- The maximum grant will be £25,000.
- There will also be middle tier of grants equalling to £10,000.
- And local authorities will have discretion to make payments of any amount under £10,000.
We are not sure about the criteria which will need to be met for each tier.
This all the detail we have so far, and we are waiting for further guidance to come across shortly possibly next week.