Guidance released for businesses looking to apply for Government's Discretionary Business Grant

Applications will launch on Friday, May 22, with payments expected to be paid by June 5 if successful

Businesses in Stockport who have not been eligible for existing coronavirus Government funding can apply for a new Discretionary Business Grant that will launch on Friday, May 22.

The Local Authority Discretionary Grants Fund was announced by the Government on May 1.

Stockport Council has this week released guidance to businesses in the borough regarding the new grant, which is targeted at firms who have not been eligible for existing government funds.

The guidance from the government has indicated that the grants are aimed at:

• Small and micro businesses, as defined in Section 33 Part 2 of the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015 and the Companies Act 2006.
• Businesses with relatively high ongoing fixed property-related costs
• Businesses which can demonstrate that they have suffered a significant fall in income due to the COVID-19 crisis
• Businesses which occupy property, or part of a property, with a rateable value or annual rent or annual mortgage payments below £51,000.

The information that the council has now published sets out the criteria for which priority businesses are eligible to apply, the application process and the date from which applications can be made.

Cllr David Meller, Cabinet Member for Economy and Regeneration, said: “To date, we have paid out more than £54million in government grants to around 4,700 businesses in the borough.

“However, we know there are businesses in Stockport that have not been eligible for any government assistance so far: from those that have waited years for a rateable value on their property to those in shared spaces, such as warehouses or mills.

“The Discretionary Grants Fund will help those businesses previously ineligible to claim support that can help them through this unprecedented period.

“Stockport will soon begin its economic recovery and as part of that, the council is ready to back local businesses and encourage the whole borough to get behind them.

“This grant money will, I hope, support businesses into the recovery period: we all need to be working together and supporting each other on the path towards Building Back Better.”

In order for the Discretionary Business Grant to benefit the maximum number of eligible small businesses, there will be five levels of grant, which will directly be proportionate to the level of property costs for the business, and take into account the impact on a business owner’s income due to the coronavirus crisis.

If the fund is oversubscribed due to the number of applications received, the council will amend the grant levels to a pro-rata basis, which will be based on the applications received and approved.

Payments to businesses that meet the criteria will be made from Friday, June 5.

The full guidance can be found on our Coronavirus Business pages.

For questions specific to the Discretionary Business Grant, please email: skladgrants@stockport.gov.uk