Business support and advice

COVID-19 DISCRETIONARY FUND 2nd PHASE

The purpose of this Fund is to provide financial support to Inverclyde businesses who have less than 250 employees and have been unable to secure any COVID-19 business grant support from October 2020.

EXCLUDED from applying

Organisations that have already applied for the COVID-19 DISCRETIONARY FUND.

ALEOs are NOT eligible for this fund, Arm’s-length external organisations, also organisations that are in administration, insolvent or where a striking-off notice has been made, business found to have breached any COVID-19 Regulations.

The application form and notes are found within the Documents section of this page re the Discretionary Fund 2nd Phase. Important make sure that you fully complete all of the application and attach all supporting documentation requested or the application may be REJECTED, we will ONLY be giving priority to all full applications.

Please send FULL APPLICATION to eds.enquiries@inverclyde.gov.uk

 

Newly Self Employed Hardship Fund

This fund opened for applications on 16th February 2021 and the deadline for applications is 5pm on 16 March 2021.

This fund is not being administered by the Council, we can only sign post you to it via this link https://findbusinesssupport.gov.scot/coronavirus-advice/newly-self-employed-hardship-fund .

If you have any queries relating to your application to this fund, there is now an Enquiry Form available at the link.

To be eligible for this grant, you must have been operating your business before 17 March 2020, lost income as a result of Covid-19 restrictions, and meet all of the other eligibility criteria.  Please do not direct any questions you may have to the Council as we are unable to provide any further information than that shown in the link above.

 

Mobile And Home-Based Close Contact Services Fund (includes Registered Driving Instructors)

This fund opened for applications on 16th February 2021 and the deadline for applications is 5pm on 16 March 2021.

This fund is not being administered by the Council, we can only sign post you to it via this link  https://findbusinesssupport.gov.scot/coronavirus-advice/mobile-and-home-based-close-contact-service-fund .

If you have any queries relating to your application to this fund, there is now an Enquiry Form available at the link.

This fund is for owners and operators of mobile and home-based close contact service businesses and for Registered Driving Instructors.  Full details of all eligibility criteria are provided in the link.  Please do not direct any questions you may have to the Council as we are unable to provide any further information than that shown in the link above.

 

Taxi and Private Hire Driver Support Fund

For full eligibility criteria and details of how to apply please follow this link: https://www.inverclyde.gov.uk/covid-19/taxi-and-private-hire-driver-support-fund .

Strategic Framework Business Fund

A high volume of applications are being received to the Strategic Framework Business Fund.  Applications will be administered as quickly as possible.   

 

Strategic Framework Business (Closure & Restrictions) Fund

The Strategic Framework Business Fund is a Scottish Government grant fund, linked to Scotland’s Strategic Framework.   If your business is required at any point from 2 November 2020 to close by law or is specifically required to change its operations due to COVID-19 restrictions such as being legally required to close earlier than normal, you may be eligible to apply for grant support. The application form found in the Document section of this page lists eligible businesses according to the Strategic Framework Level.  Grants will be paid every four weeks in arrears as long as restrictions last. 

If you have applied to the Strategic Framework Business Fund since November 2020 and your business has received a payment, you are not required to apply again.  Instead, your application will be reviewed and you will be notified by email about the next payment.    

Businesses that have to adopt physical distancing or where the demand for products or services has been reduced because of the pandemic or other restrictions which impact on individuals and communities are not eligible.

Business Temporary Closure Grant

Premises required to close by law will be entitled to a closure grant of:

  • £2,000 if their premises have a rateable value of up to and including £51,000; or
  • £3,000 if their premises have a rateable value of £51,001 or above.

Business Restrictions Grant

Businesses that remain open but are specifically and legally required to modify their operations as a result of protective measures will be entitled to a hardship grant of:

  • £1,400 if their premises have a rateable value of up to and including £51,000, or
  • £2,100 if their premises have a rateable value of £51,001 or above

Other Qualifying Criteria

  • Your business was trading on 2nd November 2020.
  • Your business is in one of the sectors affected by the current Scottish Government Protection Levels applicable to the Inverclyde Council area, as listed on the application form.
  • Your business premises are registered for Non-Domestic rates. Businesses that pay rates through their landlords rather than directly to a Council are eligible to apply (evidence to be provided through a copy of your lease agreement). 
  • Businesses that have breached wider COVID regulations/requirements prior to the Strategic Framework restrictions being implemented on 2nd November are not eligible. 

How to apply

The application form is found within the Documents section of this page.  Select the IC Strategic Framework Business Fund form. 

Completed applications must be returned by email to: covidfund@inverclyde.gov.uk with supporting documents as directed on the form. 

Grants will be paid every four weeks in arrears as long as restrictions last. 

If you do not agree with the outcome of your application

If you do not agree with the outcome of your grant application you can ask for the decision to be reviewed.  Review requests should be sent by email  giving the reason you do not agree to covidefund@inverclyde.gov.uk .  The decision will be reviewed by a senior officer and you will be informed of the outcome. 

 

Hospitality, Retail and Leisure Sector Top-up payments

The Top Up Payment scheme is now closed.

If you do not agree with the outcome of your application

If you do not agree with the outcome of your grant application you can ask for the decision to be reviewed.  Review requests should be sent by email  giving the reason you do not agree to covidefund@inverclyde.gov.uk .  The decision will be reviewed by a senior officer and you will be informed of the outcome. 

 

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

  • The closing date for claims up to and including 31 October remains 30 November 2020.
  • Claims from 1 November 2020 must be submitted by 11.59pm 14 calendar days after the month you’re claiming for. If this time falls on the weekend then claims should be submitted on the next working day.
  • If you are claiming for a period that starts on or after 1 November 2020, then you can only claim for furloughed employees that were employed and on payroll on 30 October 2020. This means you must have made a PAYE RTI submission to HMRC between 20 March 2020 and 30 October 2020, notifying a payment of earnings for that employee. This may differ where you have made employees redundant, or they stopped working for you on or after 23 September 2020 and you have subsequently re-employed them.

Bounce Back Loan Scheme (BBLS)

  • If you already have a Bounce Back Loan but borrowed less than you were entitled to, you can top up your existing loan to your maximum amount. You must request the top-up by 31 January 2021.
  • The top-ups are only available from a borrower’s existing BBLS lender. A borrower can apply for a top-up that is for the lesser of £50k or 25% of the annual turnover the borrower certified in their original successful BBLS application form, minus the value of their original loan.

Coronavirus Business Contingency Fund: Phase 1

  • Eligibility criteria has been updated to clarify that ALEOs are not eligible.

Hardship Fund for Creative Freelancers 

  • Applications to the fund have now reopened
  • Bursaries can be requested for any sum from £500 - £2000. If you have specific access needs, then you may request more than this.
  • The fund does not have a published deadline – but will only remain open for as long as the funds are available with each of the partners. Creative Scotland therefore encourage applicants to apply as early as possible.

Screen Hardship Fund

  • Applications to the fund have now reopened via Screen Scotland
  • Applicants can apply for a Hardship bursary of up to £2,000. You may request more than £2,000 if your request includes access.

Youth Arts Access Fund

  • Applications close midnight, Thursday 12 November. This fund has now been removed from the summary document.
  • All applicants will be notified of decisions by 9 February 2021

Community Response, Recovery & Resilience Fund

  • The fund will be moving to the Resilience phase on 1st December. The fund's priorities will focus on supporting organisations with their long-term planning, helping them become more sustainable in the future, despite the continued uncertainty.
  • More information on the Resilience phase will be published late November. Whilst the fund moves into the final phase, please be assured that the fund will not close at any time.

Creative, Tourism & Hospitality Enterprises Hardship Fund - THIS APPLICATION HAS NOW CLOSED 

 

Business Gateway Inverclyde

Business Gateway is being responsive and reactive to the needs and challenges Scottish businesses face due to the Covid-19 (coronavirus).  Plans are being put in place to deliver a virtual advisory and workshop service where possible.

Advisers can offer free support with a wide range of business matters including continuity planning, managing cashflow, HR and dealing with suppliers.

The local number for Inverclyde is 01475 779327.

Rental relief available for businesses

Businesses renting properties from Inverclyde Council could have their rental payments deferred for up to 24 months covering the period of government restrictions in which they are unable to trade as normal. This offer has been introduced to support businesses struggling with the effects of coronavirus (covid-19).

A deferral would result in invoices continuing to be issued in normal terms however the repayment of the invoices could be spread over a fixed period, negotiated with the lessee of up to 24 months from date of issue. This relieves the immediate burden on cash flow on the business but still ensures that the terms of the lease are fulfilled.

Social distancing guidance for business

The Scottish Government has issued updated social distancing guidance for businesses in Scotland to help provide clarity on protecting employees in the fight against coronavirus (covid-19).

It provides further information for employers and makes clear that those providing essential services must follow social distancing requirements.

It asks that the owners of businesses and operators of workplaces not required to close by law to consider whether what they do is essential to the efforts in the fight against the virus or benefit the wellbeing of society.

It also asks those employers if they can demonstrate and provide their workforces with reassurance that they are consistently practising safe social distancing and complying with all other standard health and safety requirements.

If the answer to either of these questions is no, workplaces are advised to close.

The guidance is published at: https://www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-business-and-social-distancing-guidance/ (cut and paste this link or use the link on this page)

Construction sector guidance

There is a link on this page to guidance on construction sites and associated works that can continue under specific conditions issued by the Scottish Government.