Over £16.5m (£18m as of May 17) has now been paid out by Erewash Borough Council to help business ratepayers in the borough hit by the financial impact of coronavirus.
But the council is still working to contact the hard-to-reach eligible businesses who are missing out on the government grants because no contact details are available.
These will be small businesses which do not pay rates because of rate reliefs already applied, meaning the council often has no email address or phone number or the details are out of date. While letters have been sent to their premises, the likelihood is that they are closed during these difficult times and so the letters have not been picked up.
These are the people the council needs to reach and is urging them to fill in the council’s online form so that, if eligible, their grants can be paid.
The council is also working through applications from businesses that have not had long-standing direct debits set up but have responded. Payments are still being made on a daily basis to businesses that are eligible and have provided the correct information to verify payment of the grant.
The need to have all the required information in place can slow the process in some circumstances but is a legal requirement and the council’s team remains committed to getting out the grants to every eligible business as soon as possible.
Councillor Wayne Major, Deputy Leader of Erewash Borough Council and Lead Member for Resources, says:
“Our team is working round-the-clock to get these grants authorised and paid out. We know that local businesses need our support. We want to assure any business still waiting that we are doing everything we can to get their grants in place.”
The government announced a package of temporary grant funding measures aimed at supporting businesses. These include small business grants of £10,000 for all businesses in receipt of small business rate relief or rural rate relief and grants of up to £25,000 for businesses in the retail, leisure and hospitality sector.
As well as the council’s website, business ratepayers can find out more at gov.uk.