29th May, 2020

Council chiefs move quick to help support businesses in Stratford district

Ian Hughes 30th Mar, 2020

COUNCIL chiefs have moved quickly to help businesses in the district.

In the Budget earlier this month Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced a package of measures to provide support for public services, individuals and businesses in a bid to minimise the impact of coronavirus.

In Stratford district there could be up to £33million available to businesses.

But government funds are not expected to be available to Stratford District Council (SDC) until the middle of April.

So SDC, in collaboration with Warwickshire County Council (WCC), has moved to make some funds available to start the process of making payments to local businesses in urgent need this week.

Details of the Small Business Grant Fund (SGBF)

Administered in Stratford district by Stratford District Council, it provides a one-off grant of up to £10,000 to help small business owners meet their operating costs.

Only businesses in England are eligible for SBGF and businesses can only claim once, even if they have multiple business premises.

Businesses are eligible must have been in receipt of small business rate relief (SBRR) or rural rate relief (RRR) on the March 11, 2020. Those small businesses whose premises have a rateable value between £12,000 and £15,000 and receive tapered relief also qualify.

Businesses whose property includes those also for personal use are excluded, along with car parks and parking spaces. Any business in liquidation or dissolved on or before March 11, 2020 are also excluded.

The district council will be contacting eligible businesses this week and pointing them to the online application form on the authority’s website.

SDC deputy leader Coun Daren Pemberton said: “We know there is considerable uncertainty and anxiety across our business community at present.

“Business owners face unprecedented challenges as a result of Covid-19. Many independent businesses have also contributed hugely to the distinctive character of our towns and villages across the district. We will do everything in our power to ensure they have the support they need at this time and to build for their future recovery.

“I also want to pay tribute to our WCC partners who have worked tirelessly alongside district council officers to bring the start of payments forward so that we can begin to get help to where it is needed.

“To help with this, we’re asking all businesses to keep watching our website from next week and complete the secure on-line application, which is the only method for being able to access the monies they are entitled to.”

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