Tuesday, December 1, 2020

News: £6m fund for supply chains affected by pandemic


Applications are now open for a fund of up to £6 million to support South Yorkshire businesses supplying those forced to close by the national lockdown, or affected by Tier 2 and 3 restrictions.

Previously funding has been focused on businesses directly impacted by the restrictions. This latest round of grant support is targeted towards businesses that rely largely on the hospitality, accommodation, leisure and entertainment sectors for business-to-business trade, and which have therefore suffered a significant loss income due to COVID restrictions.

Payments under the Supply Chain Support Scheme will be based on the rateable value of the business, or rental value for those businesses not registered for business rates. The funding available for these one-off grants is strictly limited, and businesses must submit their application – via their local authority – by Thursday 17 December 2020.

To be eligible to apply via Rotherham Council, businesses must provide evidence that they:

- are located in Rotherham and part of the South Yorkshire region’s supply chain
- have fixed property costs (rateable or rental value)
- were open and trading on 13 October 2020
- have experienced significant loss of trade due to Covid-19 restrictions, with a significant level of their trade normally being with the hospitality, accommodation, leisure and entertainment sectors
- have not benefitted from other local or national support grants
- are not a national company.

Businesses will need to supply detailed information and evidence to show how they have been affected.

Councillor Saghir Alam, Cabinet Member for Corporate Services and Finance at Rotherham Council, said: “We want Rotherham businesses to get the maximum benefit from the funding that has come down from central government to our region. However, the funds and time available for these discretionary grants applications are strictly limited.

“It’s vital that businesses submit their applications urgently – and with as much detail and evidence as possible – so that the Council can get as much money as possible to these Rotherham businesses who so urgently need this help.”

Councillor Denise Lelliott, Cabinet Member for Jobs and the Local Economy at Rotherham Council, added: “Our hearts go out to the businesses and employees who have been left in such uncertainty by the on-going restrictions, which have had such a massive impact on their livelihoods. Although the financial support is not as significant as we’d hoped, it could be the difference between survival and closure for some businesses.

“I would urge them to check their eligibility and apply as soon as possible. Let’s keep this money in Rotherham, supporting Rotherham companies and Rotherham jobs.”

The Supply Chain Support Scheme follows on from schemes for businesses in Rotherham that were directly affected by the national lockdown and Tier 2 and 3 restrictions, which have been rolled out in previous weeks.

These local grants have been made available thanks to a £30m fund secured by Sheffield City Region, following an agreement made with the Government when the region entered the very high (Tier 3) local alert level in October. The £30m fund has been divided between the region’s local authorities to support a number of schemes to help businesses that were not eligible for national schemes.

Rotherham businesses can apply to the Supply Chain Support Scheme, and other business grants being administered via Rotherham Council's website.

Images: RMBC


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