'Firebreak' grants available to businesses

Businesses will be able to access grants to help the impact of the Welsh Covid 'firebreak'.

Powys County Council is encouraging businesses to bid for the grants
Powys County Council is encouraging businesses to bid for the grants

Powys County Council will distribute the new funding to Powys businesses, which will consist of four different grant schemes to help boost cash flow.

The grant schemes opened on Wednesday and will close at 5pm on November 20 – or when the funds are fully allocated.

Businesses can only apply for one of the four grants on offer and applications will be dealt with on a first come first served basis.

The first grant is £5,000 for retail, leisure and hospitality businesses that have been forced to close for the firebreak and occupy a property with a rateable value of between £12,001 and £51,000.

The second grant is £1,000 for businesses eligible for small business rates relief that have a rateable value of up to £12,000 and have been forced to close due to the firebreak. If eligible, applicants for the grant can also apply for a top-up grant of £2,000.

The third grant is £1,000 for ratepayers eligible for charitable relief and community amateur sports clubs relief, as well as not for profit organisations who receive discretionary rates relief. These charities must be operating in the retail, leisure and hospitality sector and occupy properties with a rateable value of up to £12,000 to qualify.

The fourth grant is a discretionary grant of £1,500 to assist businesses that have been forced to close due to the firebreak or can show that the lockdown period will result in an 80 per cent reduction in their turnover.

Each of the four available grants has an eligibility criteria and full details can be found on the council’s website.

Following the announcement of the Welsh Government support package Councillor Aled Davies, deputy leader and cabinet member for finance, said: "We welcome the news of more financial support for Powys businesses at what is an incredibly challenging time for them.

“The firebreak lockdown brings tough consequences for our businesses, but our hope is that this funding can provide a much-needed lifeline and help sustain them.

“The council has responded quickly to the needs of local people throughout the pandemic, awarding well over £50million in financial support to date, so I am pleased that we can once again play our part in processing grants.

“It is not an automatic payment system this time so please bear with us. The process will be more complex and we expect to receive many applications, but you can help speed things up by thoroughly checking your eligibility.

“To make this as straightforward as possible we have developed a simple online application form on our website which can be used from Wednesday, which is when all the grants open.

“I want to reassure everyone that we continue to work closely with our partners at this time to support local businesses whilst also working to keep our county safe from the virus.”

Further information and guidance on the grants can be found on the council’s website www.powys.gov.uk/coronavirus/helpforbusinesses

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