Discretionary support grant for locked-down businesses goes live from Monday
A new scheme to support local businesses affected by the national lockdown (5 Nov-2 Dec) is set to go live from 9am on Monday.
The Additional Restrictions Grant is the second business support scheme to be launched this month, following an earlier mandatory grant.
This new discretionary scheme - which is funded by the government but administered by Forest of Dean District Council - is aimed at smaller businesses that might not have qualified for the initial grant.
An online form on the council’s website will guide applicants through a series of questions that will help assess if they qualify for the Additional Restrictions Grant. Applications will then be verified against Government criteria and if successful, payments will be made.
To qualify for the Additional Restrictions Grant a business must:
- Have been trading prior to restrictions coming into force on 5 November 2020
- Have been instructed to close by national restrictions and not liable to pay business rates
- Have been severely impacted by national restrictions, regardless of whether the business is liable to pay business rates, have high fixed property costs and fall within one of the following categories:
o Regular market traders with fixed building costs, such as rent and who do not have their own business rate assessment
o Bed and Breakfast establishments which pay council tax instead of business rates
o Charity properties which do not have their own business rate assessment
o Businesses that supply goods or services to the retail, hospitality, leisure and events sector who do or do not have their own business rate assessment, or where
permitted to continue to trade, the business has been severely impacted by the
closure of the retail, hospitality, leisure and event sectors (These will include those businesses with or without a business rate assessment)
o Travel companies or those transport providers who have been severely impacted by restrictions
o Small businesses in shared office or other flexible workspaces which do not have their own business rate assessment and have been severely impacted
o Those working from home who are not eligible for the self-employed income support
scheme (SEISS), or coronavirus job retention scheme (CJRS) and have high fixed
business costs such as rent, lease, hire purchase costs, franchise payments or other costs that would not be saved by not trading.
The scheme in the Forest of Dean is open from 30 November until 6 December
Welcoming the launch of the scheme, Cllr Bernie O’Neill, Cabinet Member for the Economy at Forest of Dean District Council, said: “This Additional Restrictions Grant is aimed at smaller businesses that might not have qualified for the mandatory scheme. It is equally important that we give them the financial support they need to help them through this unprecedented difficulty.
“We launched the mandatory scheme two weeks ago and that has been very successful in getting money straight to eligible businesses. Once again we are keeping the application process as simple as we can so that we can verify applications swiftly and make payments as soon as possible.”