Report by Head of Resources (attached).
The Committee considered a report by the Head of Resources (circulated previously) regarding Business Grants.
The Head of Resources highlighted the following:
· The Government had announced a series of measures to support business impacted by Covid-19. These measures included payments of grants to businesses which have had to close due to localised or widespread national restrictions being put in place.
· Whilst the awarding of these grants was the Council’s responsibility, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) had set down the criteria which must be met by each business making an application for the grants as detailed in paragraph 1.2 of the report and approval was required for the approval of the schemes criteria.
· The Council had already supported businesses with the payment of £50m of business grants over the past 12 months. Further £12m had been paid to businesses since January 2021.
· The Government had announced that further funding would be available to businesses for the period mid-February to the end of March 2021 and that these would be paid automatically to businesses who had previously received the grant.
The Leader thanked the Head of Resources and his team for their hard work in processing the payment of business grants over the past 12 months.
In response to questions, the Head of Resources advised the following:
· The Council had received £1.9m for the discretionary grant scheme in November 2020 and £860,000 top-up allocation in January 2021. The Council was currently in the process of administering the discretionary grants to business. No further additional restriction grant had been announced for the mid-February to the end of March 2021 period.
· To date the Council had processed the payment of just over £2m of the total £2.8m of business grants.
· The Chancellor had announced further business grants as part of his budget and details would be known shortly.
RESOLVED that the adoption of the:
(a) Local Restrictions Support Grant (Closed) Addendum with effect from 5 November 2020 as shown in Appendix A be approved;
(b) Local Restrictions Support Grant (Closed) with effect from 2 December 2020 as shown in Appendix B be approved;
(c) Christmas Support Payment for wet-led pubs as shown in Appendix C be approved;
(d) Local Restrictions Support Grant (Closed) Addendum 5 January as shown in Appendix D be approved;
(e) Closed Business Lockdown Payment as shown in Appendix E be approved.