State Aid law is the means by which the European Union regulates state funded support to business.
Providing discretionary relief to ratepayers is likely to amount to State Aid. However the support for ratepayers will be State Aid compliant where it is provided in accordance with the de minimis regulations (EC 1407/2013)
The de minimis regulations allow an undertaking to receive up to €200,000 of ‘de minimis’ aid. This is over a rolling three year period (consisting of the current financial year and the two previous financial years).
Local authorities should familiarise themselves with the terms of the State Aid exemption. In particular the types of undertaking that are excluded from receiving de minims aid (article 1). Also the relevant definition of undertaking (Article 2(2)15) and the requirement to convert the aid into Euros.
It's necessary for us to establish that awarding the aid will not result in the undertaking receiving more than €200,00 of de minimis aid. Please note that the threshold only relates to aid provided under the de minimis regulations. This is the aid under other exemptions or outside the scope of State Aid isn't relevant to the de minimis calculation.