Government department confirms local council funding eligibility
The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has clarified to the National Association of Local Councils (NALC) the eligibility of local (parish and town) councils for the business grants which are in place to support small businesses cope with the impact of COVID-19.
There are three available grants; the Small Business Grant Fund (SBGF), the Retail, Leisure and Hospitality Grant Fund (RLHGF) and the Local Authority Discretionary Grant Fund (LADGF).
Local councils are NOT eligible for RLHGF, however, they are eligible for:
- SBGF — if they meet all the scheme criteria, the precepting authority exclusion does not apply, and they are in theory eligible for small business rate relief or rural rate relief (see paragraph 16 and 19 of the SBGF guidance).
- LADGF — if they meet all the scheme criteria, the precepting authority exclusion does not apply, and neither is there any link to small business rate relief or rural rate relief.
NALC continues to press the government on the financial impact of the pandemic on local councils and has called for a dedicated package of support.