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£48.9m paid out to Highland businesses in Covid-19 grant aid


By Alan Hendry

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The Covid-19 small business and self-catering grant scheme, set up to help companies stay in business during the coronavirus crisis, has now paid out £48.9 million to 4359 Highland businesses. This now includes payments to owners of multiple premises following the expansion of the scheme on May 5.

Highland Council's head of development and regeneration, Allan Maguire, said: "When an application is now submitted with all the required information provided, businesses are receiving grant in their bank account within 10 working days.

“If an applicant does not provide the required bank evidence, or if the grant is for a self-catering property and they do not provide the additional income and booking evidence, unfortunately this delays payment.

"We have contacted all of the businesses involved and ask that they promptly get the required information back to us, so we can complete the assessment of their application and get the grant paid to them.”

Following recent changes by the Scottish Government as to who can benefit from the grant scheme, eligible businesses are also able to receive an additional grant of either £7500 or £18,750 if they own multiple qualifying properties. Previously those businesses could only receive a one-off grant of either £10,000 or £25,000.

Also, charitable organisations that are eligible for the Small Business Bonus Scheme but that receive charitable relief are now able to apply for and benefit from the £10,000 grant.

The chairperson of the council’s economy and infrastructure committee, Councillor Trish Robertson, said: “We are keen to ensure that as many Highland businesses as possible that qualify for the grant apply for and benefit from it. I therefore urge businesses to go onto the council's website and follow the links to the guidance and application form.”


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