Wednesday, March 9, 2022

News: £4.8m Rotherham business rates relief scheme launched


A £4.8m fund to help businesses who have lost out due to the COVID-19 pandemic is to be made available by Rotherham Council.

Business owners need to act fast, with the application window due to close at the end of April.

Businesses that have suffered a negative financial impact from the Covid-19 pandemic during the 2021/22 financial year are invited to apply to Rotherham Council for business rates relief.

Applicants will be able to apply for rates relief of 50%, up to a maximum of £6,000, until the application window closes on 30 April 2022. All claims will be assessed after this date, when the total award will be reviewed and applied. If there is a residual balance remaining once all successful applications have been reviewed and their initial award calculated, it will be distributed across all successful applicants to maximise the use of this grant, retaining the funding within Rotherham. Dependent upon the number of successful claims received, the relief award could be increased above the current maximum of £6,000.

The Council scheme will follow Government criteria for the awarding of grants, which states that the Council must:

- not award relief to ratepayers who for the same period are or would have been eligible for the Extended Retail Discount (covering Retail, Hospitality and Leisure), or the Nursery Discount.
- not award relief to a business premise for a period when it is unoccupied (other than hereditaments which have become closed temporarily due to the government’s advice on COVID-19, which should be treated as occupied for the purposes of this relief)
- direct their support towards ratepayers who have been adversely affected by the pandemic and have been unable to adequately adapt to that impact.

To qualify for a grant, businesses must have been negatively impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic and must not be eligible and/or in receipt of another discretionary relief scheme.

Cllr Saghir Alam, Cabinet Member for Corporate Services, Community Safety & Finance said: “It is vital, if your business qualifies, that you apply to Rotherham Council for a rates relief award.”

“We’re working hard together to rebuild our local economy and help our businesses through difficult trading conditions, towards the better days that lay ahead. This latest grant scheme will help Rotherham’s economy along the road to recovery.”

Businesses applying for the Rotherham Council scheme must have been in occupation on 31 December 2021, though businesses in the following sectors do not qualify:

- Public sector organisations
- Banks
- Utilities
- Advertising Units
- Petrol Stations
- Sports Facilities and Grounds

Example businesses that could apply:

Community Centres
Offices (Commerical/Educational/Industrial etc)
Retail Warehouses
Vehicle repair workshops and premises

Businesses also have until March 18 2022 to apply for an Omicron Leisure and Hospitality Grant, which launched in Rotherham at the start of the year.

RMBC COVID support website

Images: Google Maps


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