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Supporting businesses to minimise the impact of COVID-19

Published 18th Mar 2020 by Shaida Khan

Calderdale Council’s business team is working hard to ensure the impact of COVID-19 on the borough’s business community is minimised. We know there is considerable uncertainty and anxiety across our business community at present.

At the meeting of the Council’s Cabinet on Monday 16 March, we announced a ten point plan, detailing how Calderdale Council will respond to the risks related to COVID-19.

Point five of the plan includes details of how the Council intends to support business. This includes the development a business hub, in partnership with the Mid Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce, to support and advise businesses.

The hub will also be working to implement the package of support for businesses announced by Government yesterday. This includes:

  • statutory sick pay relief package for businesses with fewer than 250 employees,
  • a 12-month business rates holiday for all retail, hospitality and leisure businesses in England,
  • small business grant funding of £10,000 for all business in receipt of small business rate relief or rural rate relief,
  • grant funding of £25,000 for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses with property with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000,
  • the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme to support long-term viable businesses who may need to respond to cash-flow pressures by seeking additional finance

The Government has promised to provide councils with guidance on the grants and funding to make these payments from early April, but officers will be contacting businesses to collect the information needed to make these payments as soon as possible. The Council will provide further information and updates as soon as the Government guidance arrives.

The Council is also continuing to work hard to process the recent applications for flood grants, as many businesses are still in the process of recovery from the damage caused by storms Ciara and Dennis.

The Leader of Calderdale Council, Cllr Tim Swift, said:

“Five weeks ago, Calderdale was devastated by Storm Ciara, with over 500 businesses in the borough affected by flooding.

“These businesses, and many others who weren’t flooded, now face new and very significant challenges as a result of Covid-19.

“Throughout this difficult period, we’ll do all we can to support local communities and will continue to ensure that grant applications for flood relief are processed as quickly as possible.

“Our officers are also now urgently working through the detail of the government announcement to ensure we can offer the relevant advice and grant support as soon as possible.

“Our many independent businesses contribute so much to the distinctive character of our towns and villages. Lots have already had to recover from significant recent setbacks and I want to reassure those and others, that we will do all we can to ensure they have the support to weather this very different sort of storm.”


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