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Council outlines COVID-19 support for businesses and families

Date Published: 18 March 2020
Business

Rutland County Council is poised to extend a range government support measures to local businesses affected by coronavirus (COVID-19). 

In response to the potential impact of COVID-19, the government announced several measures in its Budget to support local business. This was followed by additional measures announced on Tuesday 17 March.

Measures announced so far include:

  • Businesses in the retail, hospitality, and leisure sectors will pay no business rates in 2020/21, regardless of their rateable value
  • Grants of up to £25,000 for businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors with rateable values of less than £51,000
  • All businesses in receipt of Small Business Rates Relief or Rural Rate relief, regardless of sector, will be eligible for a cash payment of £10,000. The Council is awaiting final guidance from the government and will then contact you if your business is eligible for this support.  
  • Government-backed loans for any business which needs access to cash to pay their rent, salaries, suppliers, or purchase stock. The new Business Interruption Loan Scheme for small and medium sized businesses will now provide loans of up to £5million, with no interest due for the first six months 

“The government has signalled its intention to help and support local businesses affected by COVID-19. We are expecting to receive further guidance on this by 20th March. We can’t do anything until we have further details. However, we are ready to act quickly to implement any support measures as soon as we know more.”
Councillor Gordon Brown, Cabinet Member for Finance

For more details about the support measures included in the Chancellor’s budget, please visit the government's website

The first instalments for business rates are due on the 1st April 2020.  For businesses who believe they may be entitled to one of the discounts or relief put forward by government, Rutland County Council is advising the following:

  • If you have a direct debit/standing order set up that and you believe that you will not have to pay rates at all or at that amount, then you may wish to cancel it at the bank
  • If you pay by other means, then you may wish to ignore your current bill and wait for a revised bill to be issued

Businesses with any questions about business rates and COVID-19 support should email: localtaxation@rutland.gov.uk.

Local businesses who are also tenants of Rutland County Council will be offered the chance to defer rents due for the first quarter of 2020/21 for three months.

“As well as helping businesses, we have a range of support available for individuals and families who may be struggling to pay Council Tax or threatened by financial hardship. If your household income has been affected by coronavirus then you can apply to us for help to pay your Council tax. If you are already receiving Council Tax support and have been affected by coronavirus, we may be able to offer you further help through our Discretionary Fund. We’ll also be making more funding available to support those in hardship.”
Councillor Gordon Brown 

Support for individuals and families

If you’re struggling to pay your bill for whatever reason, please contact Rutland County Council by emailing: localtaxation@rutland.gov.uk

You can also seek advice from the Citizens Advice Rutland.

The Council already has a special fund set up for anyone who is struggling due to sudden financial hardship. Citizens Advice Rutland manage all financial crisis support applications on behalf of Rutland County Council.

For more information, please see our coronavirus (COVID-19) page.


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