East Lothian Council has welcomed an extension of the government support grant scheme for businesses.
Applications totalling more than £7.4 million have already been approved for East Lothian businesses and applications for the next phase of the scheme will be accepted from the end of April.
There are two levels of grant currently available.
- A grant of £25,000 is available for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses with a rateable value between £18,001 and up to and including £51,000
- A grant of £10,000 is available and is open to small businesses who receive Small Business Bonus Scheme (SBBS) are in receipt of Rural Relief or are eligible for SBBS but in receipt of Nursery Relief, Disabled Relief, Fresh Start or Business Growth Accelerator
- Certain property uses are excluded. Details can be found on the application form
The new package of measures extends the level of grant for businesses with more than one premises, as well as extending the eligible businesses to include small sports clubs and some trusts.
Around £220 million of further grants are being made available for businesses - including the recently self-employed - to help them deal with the ongoing impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.
This will include £120 million to extend the Small Business Grant scheme to ensure that, in addition to a 100% grant on the first property, small business rate payers will be eligible to a 75% grant on all subsequent properties. Sports clubs meeting certain criteria will also be eligible for support for the first time. New arrangements for the Small Business Grant will be in place to receive applications on 5 May. More detail on second phase qualifying criteria will be available before applications open.
A further fund is being created to support self-employed people and some SMEs (small to medium sized enterprises) ineligible for other support. This fund is likely to be open for applications in early May.
More information on these grants, how to apply for the existing funding, plus the full range of business and employment support available, is available on the council website
Councillor John McMillan, council spokesperson for Economic Development said: “Any extension to grant funding for businesses is to be welcomed and we are engaging with the Scottish Government for more information on exactly what businesses can now qualify for the extended scheme and the new scheme to support small business and the self-employed.
“In the meantime, I would encourage businesses and anyone worried about their employment status to look at our web page for further advice and to get in contact if they need support.”