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200430 | Grants to small businesses passes £200 million mark

Grants to small businesses passes £200 million mark

Cornwall Council has now paid more than £200m in emergency grant money to small businesses across Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, providing vital support during the Coronavirus crisis.

In less than a month the council has paid out £202.7m to almost 18,000 businesses in Cornwall.

Cornwall Council was highlighted by Government for the speed in which it has passed on the Government’s Business Support Grant to local small businesses. Within days of receiving details of the criteria set out by Government, the Council had written to around 24,000 small businesses to explain how to apply. It is the first local authority in the UK to pass the £200m mark in payouts.

However, there are more than 6,000 businesses who have yet to apply for the grant, which does not have to be repaid.

Council Leader Julian German said: “Our team has been working around the clock to get this money out to those that qualify under the Government’s criteria.

“There are businesses that are yet to claim and our message to them is to get in touch as soon as possible. If you think you are entitled to support but have not received a letter, or you have been unable to check the post because your workplace is closed, then please contact us immediately.

We’re aware that there are businesses which currently ‘fall through the gaps’ in qualifying for this grant and have raised the issue with our MPs and the Chancellor of the Exchequer. We have also sought clarity on the issue of ‘discretionary’ payments which, if allowed, would mean we could pass on some of the grant funding to some of those businesses who are currently not entitled to any form of Government financial support.

All businesses in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly in receipt of Small Business Rate Relief or Rural Rate Relief are eligible for a one-off grant of £10,000.

Retail, hospitality and leisure businesses in receipt of Expanded Retail Discount and with a rateable value of less than £51,000 are potentially eligible for a grant of £25,000.

Businesses in Cornwall that believe they are eligible for a grant but have not received a letter from Cornwall Council should call Cornwall Council on 0300 1234 171. Businesses?on the Isles of Scilly should call the Council of the Isles of Scilly on 0300 1234 105.

Information on business support is available on the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Growth and Skills Hub.

Story posted 30 April 2020