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Coronavirus (COVID-19) information and advice

Coronavirus: What you need to know

17 March 2020 : Council news

Government advice

It's important to keep up to date with the latest information and advice from the government.

Health advice

Here are a list of useful links to health advice and information on;

Coronavirus (COVID-19) - NHS website

Advice about staying at home - NHS website

Help to protect yourself and your community - Public Health England

For information on Adult and Children Social Care, Transport and Schools visit the Somerset County Council website

Our services

Somerset West and Taunton Council will preserve critical services, safeguard the public, and ensure our most vulnerable residents are supported. There are no immediate plans to cancel statutory committee meetings but the situation is subject to change based on the latest advice from Public Health England.

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COVID-19 for Council Tax and Business Rate Payers

The Government have announced a number of measures to assist both Council Tax and Business Rate customers.

Council Tax Customers

The Government have announced a funding scheme to support households struggling with Council Tax repayments.  We are waiting on guidance on how we can assist you with the scheme. If you are currently struggling to meet your Council Tax payments, please contact the Revenues Department:

Business Rates Customers

Retail Discount

The Government have already announced the retail discount would increase from one-third to 50 percent from the 1 April 2020 and this has been applied to those businesses already receiving the discount. Further announcements since the bills were prepared and issued have increased the 50 percent discount to 100 percent for all businesses within the retail, leisure and hospitality sectors. 

We are currently working on applying the increased retail discount before your first instalment is due. You do not need to contact us unless you have not previously claimed retail discount.

Pub Discount

Following an announcement on the 17 March 2020, pub discount no longer applies as businesses will be eligible for retail discount, however we are awaiting guidance before being able to make the amendments to accounts. You do not need to contact us unless you have not previously claimed pub or retail discount.

Grants for Small Businesses

Measures are in place to support small businesses including grants of £10,000 for businesses receiving Small Business Rate Relief and Rural Rate Relief and grants of £25,000 for larger businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure industries.  We are waiting on guidance on how to access these grants.  If you are struggling to pay your business rates please contact the Revenues Department: 

For more information on support for businesses, please visit COVID-19 Support for Businesses

COVID-19 Guidance for Business

Businesses are advised to keep updated on the latest information and advice to inform their responses to Coronavirus (COVID-19).  Here are the links for advice and guidance.

Guidance to employers and businesses about COVID-19

Support for those affected by COVID-19

Supporting Business Loads Enterprise Finance Guarantee

Remote Working Advice Toolkit