Tendring District Council has sought to reassure businesses that it is working as fast as it can to pay out Covid-19 financial support.
The council says initial guidance has been received on a number of business support schemes, both those covering the period between Essex entering Tier 2 restrictions on 24 October and the new national measures which began on November 5.
There are four schemes in total – one mandatory, with the others having an element of local discretion – but more detailed guidance is still awaited.
“We understand what a difficult and uncertain time this is for businesses; both in terms of whether or not they can operate and how under the new measures with guidance in some sectors still coming in, and in terms of what financial support is available,” said TDC Leader Neil Stock, who added; “Our systems are being recalibrated with the new information as it arrives, and we are poised to pay out grants to businesses as soon as we can.”
Businesses ordered to close under new national measures will receive a grant of £1,334 (rateable value £15k or less); £2,000 (rateable value of £15,001-£50,999k); or £3,000 (rateable value £51k or more). These are payable per 28-day cycle so it is assumed – but not yet confirmed – this support will continue if national measures are extended beyond 2 December.
TDC is seeking further guidance as to whether a business is eligible if it is closed but operating a click-and-collect or delivery service – current guidance indicates such firms will qualify for a mandatory grant.
Cllr Stock added: “In terms of schemes where we have some discretion, we want to make sure we help local firms as much as we can; part of that will be about trying to cover areas not covered by mandatory schemes, so we do not want to rush through criteria until we have all the details.
“I would urge businesses to look at what other support might be available, both local and national, and our Covid-19 web page is signposting to a lot of business advice – as is our regular Business Services e-bulletin.”
For the latest information on business support visit www.tendringdc.gov.uk/coronavirus. Retailers are also encouraged to join the Shop Safe in Tendring this Christmas Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/groups/ShopSafeTendringChristmas