COVID-19 business grants schemes now open for applications

Date: 
Wednesday, November 25, 2020


Rochford District Council is today launching an application process for local businesses to access government funded COVID-19 support grants. Nearly £1.9m is available in total to distribute to businesses across the district.

The application form for the Local Sector Restrictions Grant (LRSG) ‘Open’ and ‘Closed’ schemes and the Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG) will be open on the Council’s website from today. Businesses eligible for the ‘Sector’ scheme will be contacted directly by the Council.

A further Business Adaptations Grant (BAG) scheme will also be launched in the coming days, in conjunction with Essex County Council.

All information on applying for these schemes will be published on the following link as soon as it becomes available.

https://www.rochford.gov.uk/BusinessRatesCovid19

Rochford District Council’s Portfolio Holder for Planning Cllr Ian Ward said: “These four grants will help to support local businesses that have been suffering hardship during the pandemic, according to their individual circumstances. We know they will provide an essential lifeline at this time for many who are concerned about their livelihoods. Therefore, we are seeking to make the process as smooth and as simple as possible to access and, are doing all we can to support our local business community through such difficult and challenging times.”

Further detail on the different government schemes is set out below:

1. Local Restrictions Support Grant (Closed) - for businesses forced to close during the national lockdown

The Council has been allocated £984,294 to distribute. The funding is only for business premises forced to close. Businesses must be on the rating list to be eligible.

Businesses will be required to apply to ensure that they are eligible and will be asked to declare that the information provided is factual and accurate.

Government has specified that grants worth up to £3,000 per month should be distributed to those eligible businesses as follows:

  • For properties with a rateable value of £15k or under, grants to be £1,334 per four weeks;
  • For properties with a rateable value of between £15k-£51k grants to be £2,000 per four weeks; and
  • For properties with a rateable value of £51k or over grants to be £3,000 per four weeks.

Further information can be found on the government website here:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/check-if-your-business-is-eligible-for-a-cor...


2. Local Restrictions Support Grant (Open) - for businesses affected by the Essex ‘High’ level restrictions between 17 October to 4 November

The Council has been allocated £143,027 to distribute.

This scheme is aimed at supporting businesses in the hospitality, leisure and accommodation sectors who were affected by the additional restrictions imposed by the High and Very High tiers before the new national restrictions were in place (between 17 October and 4 November).

Local Authorities have discretion as to how to award grant funding to individual businesses under this scheme; however, the Government has announced the following funding tiers as a guide and anticipates that local authorities will provide grant funding under these tiers:

  • For properties with a rateable value of £15k or under, grants to be £934 per four weeks
  • For properties with a rateable value of over £15k and below £51k, grants to be £1,400 per four weeks; and
  • For properties with a rateable value of £51k or over grants to be £2,100 per four weeks

Further information can be found on the government website here:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/check-if-youre-eligible-for-the-coronavirus-...

 

3. Local Restrictions Support Grant (Sector)

Businesses that have been required to close due to the national restrictions introduced in March 2020, and which have not been able to re-open, may be eligible for LSRG (Sector). This funding is available from 1 November 2020 and is not retrospective.

Eligible businesses include:

  • nightclubs, dance halls, and discotheques
  • adult entertainment venues and hostess bars

The Council will be contacting eligible businesses directly. Further information can be found on the government website here:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/check-if-your-nightclub-dance-hall-or-adult-...

 

4. Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG)

The Council has been allocated £1,747,360 (based on £20 per head of population). The Council’s ARG scheme will primarily be supporting businesses that are not eligible for other grants but who are likely to have been seriously affected by national restrictions. It will also support business sectors that have been less able to adapt their service models during periods of national restrictions.

To be eligible for the ARG, you must meet the eligibility criteria set out in the Council’s policy, available here: https://www.rochford.gov.uk/ARG

Applications for the ARG must be made by 5pm on Wednesday 16 December and grants will be awarded on a first-come-first served basis.