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Coronavirus (COVID-19) information and advice

National lockdown support grant

During the period of national restrictions, which started on 5 November 2020, a significant number of businesses are required to close in order to manage the spread of coronavirus.

This grant is to provide support to those businesses.

It does not apply to businesses that have not been required to close due to the national restrictions.

Whilst the awarding of grants for this scheme is the Council’s responsibility, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has set down criteria which must be met by each business making an application.

Local restrictions support grant scheme rules

Who can apply

Any business can apply if each of the following applies:

  • It was trading from the property concerned on 4 November 2020 and;
  • the property concerned was on the rating list on the first full day of national restrictions (5 November 2020) and ;
  • the rate account for the property was in the name of the applicant and:
  • the property concerned was required to close during the period of national restrictions.

The Government has published details of the businesses which must close on their website. Further detail is provided within The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) (No. 4) Regulations 2020

  • Businesses which have mixed-used premises and only part of the business must close (e.g. locksmith/shoe repairs, restaurant/takeaway) these premises will be eligible to receive a grant if the business is required to close its main service. We will exercise our discretion and judge whether this is the case based on our local knowledge.
  • Pubs or restaurants that temporally change their business model to provide takeaways will be treated as being ‘closed’ for the purpose of this grant scheme, and therefore eligible for a grant, if you used to allow the consumption of food or alcohol on the premises but now only offer a takeaway service instead. Please note however that businesses which were set up to only provide a takeaway service before the 5 November (e.g. fish and chip shops, kebab shops, food vans etc) are not entitled to this grant.
  • Non-essential retail businesses that offer click and collect services eligible for this scheme will be treated as being ‘closed’ for the purpose of this grant scheme and will be eligible for a grant.

The Government has recently provided additional clarification around seasonal and part-time businesses as well as seasonal sports clubs.

Where a business operates seasonally and was therefore closed on the date before national restrictions were introduced, as long as the business was not insolvent, in liquidation or subject to a striking off notice on that date, it can be considered to be trading and is therefore eligible to receive grants under this scheme.

If a business operates for only part of the week and was therefore closed on the day before relevant restrictions began, it is eligible to receive grants under this scheme as long as the business was not insolvent, in liquidation or subject to a striking off notice on that date, it can be considered to be trading and is therefore eligible to receive grants under this scheme.

Seasonal sports clubs such as cricket clubs and bowling greens can be considered to be trading and therefore eligible to receive grants under this scheme even if their season ended before 4 November 2020.

Who cannot apply

A business cannot apply if any of the following applies:

  • It does not have premises shown on the local rating list at 5 November 2020 (e.g. they are run from home, in shared spaces, operate from vehicles or outdoor pitches etc) or;
  • Its premises were not required to close during the national restrictions (even if they close because employees are self-isolating or because their client base are closed) or;
  • The applicant was not named on the rate account for the premises concerned at 5 November 2020 or:
  • The business is in liquidation or dissolved or subject to a striking off notice, (or being an undertaking in difficulty on 31 December 2019) or;
  • The business has already received grant payments that equal the maximum levels of State aid permitted under the de minimis (€200,000) and the Covid-19 Temporary State Aid Framework (€800,000), or where an award of this grant would exceed those limits.

If your business does not qualify for the Local Restrictions Support Grant you may still be able to receive support through the Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG). The application process for the Somerset West and Taunton ARG scheme and full guidance will become available in late November.

Amount of grants awarded

For each 28 day period of national restrictions the grant payments are

Rateable value Grant payment
exactly £15,000 RV or under £1,334
over £15,000 RV and less than £51,000RV £2,000
exactly £51,000 RV or above £3,000

If your business does not qualify for the Local Restrictions Support Grant you may still be able to receive support through the Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG). The application process for the Somerset West and Taunton ARG scheme and full guidance is available on our Additional Restrictions Grant page.

Rateable value for business premises

This will be shown on your business rates bill or you can look it up on the Valuation Office Agency’s (VOA) website.

Payments

  • We will pay the grant to the person, partnership or company who is named as the ratepayer on our records
  • All payments will be made by bank transfer
  • We will make payment to eligible businesses as soon as we can after we have received the required application and supporting information. You will be sent a remittance advice to advise you of payment
  • Grant income received by a business is taxable, therefore payments under this scheme will be subject to tax. However, only businesses that make an overall profit once grant income is included will be subject to tax.

Appeal

If you apply and are turned down for a grant. You can ask for a review within 14 days of the decision. Details will appear on our decision notice.

Deadline for applications

The Government has not currently set a deadline but our strong advice is for businesses to apply straightaway as the quicker you apply the quicker we can get the grant to you.

Information required

For verification purposes we will need:

  • your company number and/or VAT number (where applicable)
  • a copy of the Business Rates bill for the property concerned *
  • a copy of a recent bank statement which shows the name and bank details for your business (we do not need to see individual transactions)*

You will need to have this information ready before you start the application process.

* You will not however be asked to submit a copy of your bank statement or business rates bill again if you were awarded a grant by the Council earlier this year and your business rates account and bank account remain the same.

Contact details

Please contact us by email at: LRSGC@somersetwestandtaunton.gov.uk

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