You’ll have to forgive the infantile mind. But seeing how our local authorities handle the grants for small businesses is a bit like playing Poohsticks. You put your claim in on one side of the bridge, rush to the other, and see how long it takes to come out at the other end.
Of the four district councils SSDC were the first to announce an easy to complete online form. This is to help small businesses claim the £10,000 grant given for businesses who get 100% rates relief.
The company that owns The Leveller® applied for a grant on the first day the form went live. We’ll be sure to let you know when we get paid and that should help give a clue as to how long SSDC take to process these claims.
To date they have received 600 claims out of some 3,000 businesses in South Somerset that could be eligible. And they claim the first grants were being made before Friday, although we have seen no sign of any cash as yet.
Somerset West & Taunton and Sedgemoor have also launched similar schemes and only Mendip have yet to announce how they will process claims.
If you read the government guidance and thought the councils will write to you, that should still be the case. However a number of councils have taken a pro-active approach to get businesses to apply more quickly. It also gets around the conundrum of getting hold of a letter sent to the office, when you are supposed to not be at the office working from home.
And just to reassure you that the money is there, government have already sent cash to our Local Authorities to pay these grants. Each has received the following amounts:
South Somerset District Council £41.44m
Sedgemoor District Council £30.73m
Somerset West and Taunton District Council £38.78m