New grant announced for small business: Covid-19 Business Support Grants: Local Authority Discretionary Grant Fund

The government has announced new support for small businesses that are not eligible for any of the current government Covid-19 grants but have high fixed property-related costs...

Published: Monday, 1st June 2020 Watford l artista

The government has announced new support for small businesses that are not eligible for any of the current government Covid-19 grants but have high fixed property-related costs.  This grant will be administered by local councils.


Apply for a Small Business Discretionary Grant

(Please note:  the council will not be contacting businesses with a decision about their discretionary grant application until the window for applying is closed (for the initial applications this is around 19 June)


Whilst there will be some set, national criteria for the funds, councils can determine which cases to support within those criteria. This is why it is called a discretionary grant. We must, however, prioritise the following types of businesses for grants from this funding pot.

  1. Small businesses in shared offices or other flexible work spaces e.g. industrial parks, science parks, incubators etc, which do not have their own business rates assessment;
  2.  Regular market traders who do not have their own business rates assessment;
  3. Bed & Breakfasts that pay Council Tax instead of business rates; and
  4. Charity properties in receipt of charitable business rates relief which would otherwise have been eligible for Small Business Rates Relief or Rural Rate Relief.

The list set out above is not exhaustive, but it is intended as a  guide to councils when considering which businesses to award a grant to.

Other qualifying criteria include:

  • Businesses with ongoing fixed building-related costs
  •  Businesses which can demonstrate that they have suffered a significant fall in income due to the Covid-19 crisis
  •  Business with fewer than 50 employees
  •  Businesses that were trading on or before 11th March.

Grants will be capped at £5,000. The council will have the discretion to make payments of any amount under £5,000

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