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Grant scheme to support businesses forced to close due to Covid measures

By David G Scott

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Businesses in Caithness forced to close due to the pandemic may benefit from the Temporary Business Closure Grant launched today by Highland Council.

This grant is available for businesses who have had to close due to the Covid-19 protective measures introduced on Boxing Day.

The Closure Grant operates as a two-tiered scheme, with a grant of £2,000 for premises which have a rateable value of up to and including £51,000 and a grant of £3,000 for those businesses with a rateable value of £51,001 and above. The grant is payable every four weeks, in arrears, for the duration protective measures are in place.

Highland Council headquarters on Glenurquhart Road, Inverness.Picture: Gary Anthony..
Highland Council headquarters on Glenurquhart Road, Inverness.Picture: Gary Anthony..

Councillor Trish Robertson, chair of the Economy and Infrastructure Committee said: “We recognise the significant financial hardships faced by business at this time, and the council is pleased to assist the Scottish Government in getting this essential grant out to Highland businesses.”

As the first grant payments are due towards the end of January, the council urges all affected businesses to go to its website, take the 15 minutes required to read the guidance, gather the bank and business evidence required and to apply using the online form.

As a large number of businesses will be able to apply for this grant, it is important that they supply the correct supporting information with their application. This will enable the council to quickly process their applications and make the necessary checks to ensure businesses correctly get what they are due.

Some eligible businesses who have already received two Business Restriction Grant payments for November and December, will not need to apply and will automatically get the Temporary Closure grant paid to them.

Businesses which were eligible but had not yet applied for their Business Restriction Grant, only need to apply for the Closure Grant and the council will automatically assess and pay them the Business Restriction Grant as well if eligible.

For more information please visit www.highland.gov.uk/strategicframeworkfund

Over the coming weeks the Scottish Government will be making available a range of other grants to businesses, including taxi and private hire; newly self employed, mobile close contact services and a Highland Discretionary Business Grant scheme.

The council has been asked to deliver these grant schemes and as detailed eligibility and grant scheme information becomes available from the Scottish Government, the council will provide guidance and details on its website as to who is eligible and how to apply for a grant.

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