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Further support for small businesses during the pandemic

Published 29th May 2020 by Shaida Khan

A new grant of up to £10,000 will soon be available to help small businesses which haven’t yet been eligible for financial support through the Government’s previous coronavirus business grant schemes.

Calderdale Council is encouraging local small and micro businesses to apply for the Local Authority Discretionary Grant Fund when the application form is launched in the borough on Friday 5 June.

This is further financial support made available by the Government, for businesses that were not eligible for the Small Business Grant Fund or the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Fund.

The Local Authority Discretionary Grant Fund is aimed at small businesses with high fixed property-related costs, which can demonstrate a major drop in income as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, but which have not been able to access other grant schemes.

The Council has received a limited amount of funds to pay out this grant, which doesn’t cover all eligible businesses, so it must prioritise certain types of business. The Council knows that more businesses are in great need of this vital support, so it is lobbying Government for more money.

Cllr Jane Scullion, Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Resources, said:

“Small businesses are a major part of our local economy and Calderdale’s distinctiveness, so we are doing everything we can to support them and protect livelihoods at this extremely difficult time.

“We have already paid out over £53 million to almost 5000 local businesses via the Government’s coronavirus grants, but we know there are many others needing support who weren’t eligible for these grants. We are urgently calling on Government to provide the extra funding we need to help as many businesses as possible, and working as quickly as we can to get grants out to those who need them.

“We understand how serious the impacts of the pandemic have been on our local independent businesses. We’ll continue to support them in every way we can as we move into the next phase of rebuilding our economy for a safe and strong future.”

Only businesses in the following priority groups will be eligible to apply for the Local Authority Discretionary Grant Fund:

  • Small businesses in shared offices or other flexible workspaces, such as units in industrial parks and science parks which do not have their own Business Rates assessment.
  • Regular market traders with fixed building costs, such as rent, who do not have their own Business Rates assessment.
  • Bed & Breakfasts which pay Council Tax instead of Business Rates.
  • Charity properties in receipt of Charitable Business Rates Relief which would otherwise have been eligible for Small Business Rates Relief or Rural Rate Relief.
  • Applicants must meet the definition of either a small business or a micro business.
  • Applicants must not be eligible for or benefiting from any other of the Government’s COVID-19 grant support schemes.

The Council will review the funds available after the first round of priority grants have been paid out, and will consider which other sectors could be included in the second phase.

In round one, grants will be available as follows:

  • £5,000 for businesses which are in shared spaces that have property-related costs and employ 10 or less staff.
  • £10,000 for businesses which are in shared spaces that have property-related costs and employ between 11 and 50 staff.
  • £2,500 for Bed & Breakfasts that pay Council Tax and have less than six bed spaces and to be used wholly or mainly as guest or boarding premises.
  • £2,500 for charities in shared spaces that have no property costs but are supported by landlords who pay Business Rates.
  • £5,000 for charities that have property-related costs and employ 10 or less staff.
  • £10,000 for charities that have property-related costs and employ between 11 and 50 staff.

From Friday 5 June, eligible businesses in Calderdale will be able to apply for a grant online – a web link will be made available as soon as possible. In the meantime, businesses which are interested in applying are asked to email Covid19.Business@calderdale.gov.uk to register their email address.


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