Council launches Discretionary Business Grants Fund to continue to support businesses
Telford & Wrekin Council is launching a new Discretionary Business Grants Fund to continue to support businesses hit by the coronavirus pandemic.
Businesses not forced to close due to the new lockdown restrictions but who have been severely impacted by the coronavirus pandemic can apply for grants in this section on the Council’s coronavirus website www.telford.gov.uk/coronavirus
Applications are invited from all borough business ratepayers and non-ratepayers who have fixed business related costs (rent for a business property or Business Rates).
Applications are now open until midnight on Thursday, 26 November.
The Council has received £3.59m from the Government for this fund, for the financial years 2020/21 and 2021/22.
Following grants can be awarded under the Discretionary Business grants scheme:
-For businesses with rateable value of £15k or less or fixed costs of up to £1,000 per month - grants of up to £1,067
-For businesses with rateable value above £15k - £51k, or fixed costs of up to £2,000 per month- grants of up to £1,600
-For businesses with rate value of £51k or above, or fixed costs above £2,000 per month - grants of up to £2,400
The following businesses are excluded from the Discretionary Business Grants scheme:
•A business covered by ‘Local Restrictions Support Scheme national grant scheme - for businesses that have been forced to close
•Businesses subject to state aid limits, such as national chains / organisations
•Companies in administration, insolvent or where a striking-off notice has been made.
•Businesses that cannot demonstrate a significant loss of income due to Covid-19.
Any borough businesses forced to close until 2 December due to the new national lockdown restrictions should apply for a separate grant scheme by completing this online form on the Council’s coronavirus website www.telford.gov.uk/coronavirus - ‘I am a business’ section.
The Council will work to process any applications to the discretionary scheme as soon as they come in, to ensure this essential support to qualifying businesses is paid out as quickly as possible.
In the first lockdown, the Council was one of the quickest in the country to distribute Government grants to qualifying businesses.
Borough businesses who need support and advice in applying for these grants can contact the Council’s dedicated Business Support team on 01952 567589 (9am—5pm, Mon-Fri, 9am – 1pm Saturdays until 2 Dec) or visit www.telford.gov.uk/coronavirus and click on “I am a Business” icon.
In the next few days, the Council will continue to contact eligible businesses directly to advise them about the schemes and to apply for grants.
The discretionary grant scheme is the second such scheme that the Council has operated.
Its first scheme was open during the summer and paid out its full allocation of £1.4 to 263 borough businesses, although demand for this outstripped the available funding.
Cabinet Member for Finance and Governance Rae Evans said:
“Many borough businesses are facing very serious financial challenges due to the pandemic and the new restrictions
“We will again go the extra mile to help them as much as we can.
“This time Government has increased the amount and therefore how many local businesses we can support - although we again fear that the demand for help from businesses will outstrip what we can actually do and fund.
“Whether your business has been made to close due to the new restrictions, whether you continue to operate but struggle financially – apply for grants on www.telford.gov.uk/coronavirus - ‘I am a business’ section.
“As earlier in the year, our Business Support team can provide advice depending on your circumstances and guide you through the grant applications process – get in touch using this online form or by calling 01952 567589 (9am—5pm, Mon-Fri, 9am – 1pm Saturdays until 5 Dec).”
Details on business support for borough businesses are published at www.telford.gov.uk/coronavirus - “I am a business” section.