Small businesses receiving billions in coronavirus support funding

Small businesses receiving billions in coronavirus support funding

Small businesses across the country are receiving billions in vital cash payments from councils to help support them through the coronavirus crisis.

The Local Government Association said councils have worked at pace to identify and contact eligible businesses to support them to apply for government funding since the 1st April and continue to distribute the cash as quickly as possible.

Almost 100,000 small businesses have already been paid a share of more than £1bn with more businesses receiving grant funding every day.

Some councils have set up dedicated teams and redeployed staff to make sure they can quickly process applications. They are also using websites, social media and local media to reach the businesses, which they do not hold details for but are eligible for funding.

A few examples of the great work by all councils up and down the country include:

  • More than eight in 10 eligible businesses in Telford and Wrekin have now received grant payments of more than £14m. Oxford City Council is distributing £1m a day in support to businesses.
  • In Cornwall, 10,000 businesses were paid a total of £116m by Cornwall Council within two days of the council receiving government funding.
  • Stroud District Council distributed £10m to businesses in just one day while more than £6m in grants has been paid to businesses by Wychavon District Council to support them through the coronavirus outbreak
  • Wiltshire Council is providing seven days a week support for local businesses affected by the coronavirus outbreak with approximately 60 members of staff, the majority of whom have been redeployed from other roles within the council, being mobilised to help verify and assess the grant forms being submitted by local businesses for vital funding.

Cllr Richard Watts, Chair of the LGA’s Resources Board, said: “Councils are leading local efforts to support communities and businesses as they try and cope with the coronavirus outbreak.

“Government grants are a vital lifeline to businesses struggling at this time and worried about the future. Councils are working fast to ensure businesses eligible for this money are receiving it as quickly as possible.”

Header image ©chrupka/AdobeStock.

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