Updated 4th May 2020
A discretionary fund has been set up to support certain small businesses previously outside the scope of the business grant funds scheme.
The government has pledged a further £617 million in grants for small businesses unable to access much needed finance.
This is an additional 5% uplift to the £12.33 billion funding previously announced for the Small Business Grants Fund (SBGF) and the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grants Fund (RHLGF). The government will confirm the exact amount for each local authority later this week.
This additional fund is aimed at small businesses with ongoing fixed property-related costs. Local authorities to prioritise businesses in shared spaces, regular market traders, small charity properties that would meet the criteria for Small Business Rates Relief, and bed and breakfasts that pay council tax rather than business rates. But local authorities may choose to make payments to other businesses based on local economic need. The allocation of funding will be at the discretion of local authorities.
Businesses must be small, under 50 employees, and they must also be able to demonstrate that they have seen a significant drop of income due to Coronavirus restriction measures.
There will be three levels of grant payments. The maximum will be £25,000. There will also be grants of £10,000. Local authorities will have discretion to make payments of any amount under £10,000. It will be for councils to adapt this approach to local circumstances so businesses will need to follow announcements from their local authorities.