Business support during the coronavirus emergency

Business Gateway East Dunbartonshire and the Council are offering support to business owners affected by the ongoing pandemic.

You can access additional advice and updates by visiting the local business support information hub - www.businessworks.scot

For information on funding sources and support for businesses, visit https://findbusinesssupport.gov.scot/coronavirus-advice and www.gov.uk/business-coronavirus-support-finder

Please note, the closing date has now passed for applications to the Scottish Government's Coronavirus Business Support Fund, Newly Self-Employed Hardship Fund and the Bed and Breakfast Hardship Fund.

Business Support Fund

The Business Support Fund provided by the Scottish Government and administered by East Dunbartonshire Council will provide one-off grants to local businesses directly impacted by the local restrictions that came into effect from 9 October 2020.

The general fund is restricted to hospitality businesses specified in the local lockdown regulations. It operates as a two-tiered scheme, with a smaller grant of £2,875 for businesses with a Rateable Value of up to and including £51,000 and a larger grant of £4,310 for those businesses with a RV of £51,001 or over. An upper limit of £21,000 in total will apply to any eligible business operating multiple premises

At the same time, the Council is inviting applications to the  Hardship Fund for business premises that have seen a downturn in trade specifically due to restrictions impacting their capacity to trade. This is also a two-tiered scheme, with a smaller grant of £1,440 for businesses with a Rateable Value up to and including £51,000 and a larger grant of £2,155 for those businesses with a RV of £51,001 and over. An upper limit of £14,000 in total will apply to any eligible business operating multiple premises

The deadline for applications to either Fund is Tuesday 3 November at 5pm.

For more information visit https://www.eastdunbarton.gov.uk/residents/council-democracy/covid-19-business-support-fund

Guidance

Environmental Health and Trading Standards colleagues are happy to discuss current guidelines with business owners based in the area. The contact details are:

Alternatively, you can call 0300 1234510.

Self-Employment Income Support Scheme

The Self-Employment Income Support Scheme extension aims to support viable traders facing reduced demand over the winter months, covering 20 per cent of average monthly trading profits via a UK Government grant.

Visit https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/self-employment-income-support-scheme-seiss-grant-extension for information.

The extension will provide two grants and will last for six months from November 2020 to April 2021. Grants will be paid in two lump sum instalments, each covering a three-month period.

The first grant will cover three months’ worth of profits from the start of November until the end of January. It will be worth 20% of average monthly profits and will capped at £1,875 in total.

Job Support Scheme

From 1 November, for the next six months, the UK Government's Job Support Scheme aims to protect viable jobs in businesses who are facing lower demand over the winter months due to COVID-19. Visit https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/job-support-scheme for information.

The Government will pay a third of hours not worked, up to a cap, with the employer also contributing a third. This will ensure employees earn a minimum of 77% of their normal wages, where the Government contribution has not been capped.

Employers using the Job Support Scheme will also be able to claim the Job Retention Bonus (see below) if they meet the eligibility criteria.

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

HMRC's Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will close on 31 October 2020. For information on the latest changes, visit https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/changes-to-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme/changes-to-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme

Please note, the scheme closed to new entrants on 30 June 2020.

Job Retention Bonus

The UK Government has shared further details on the Job Retention Bonus, offering employers £1,000 for every previously furloughed employee retained to the end of January 2021. Conditions apply, with more information to follow. Visit www.gov.uk/government/publications/job-retention-bonus/job-retention-bonus for initial details.

Guide for Home Businesses

East Dunbartonshire Economic Partnership (EDEP) has produced A Guide for Home Businesses, containing useful information and links to further guidance for local entrepreneurs and anyone thinking about starting a business from home. The production of this Guide fulfils Action 21 of East Dunbartonshire’s Economic Development Strategy. The aim is to make it easier for home business owners, or those looking to start a new home-based business, to access the information they may need.

The Guide also offers potential business owners details of regulations that they need to comply with and can help them get in touch with the relevant Council services.

Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme

The UK Government has a scheme for small and medium sized employers - with fewer than 250 employees - to recover Statutory Sick Pay payments made to employees.

Employers seeking more information on the Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme - covering eligible periods of sickness starting on or after 13 March 2020 - can visit www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-back-statutory-sick-pay-paid-to-employees-due-to-coronavirus-covid-19 and www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-back-statutory-sick-pay-paid-to-employees-due-to-coronavirus-covid-19

Bounce Back Loans

The UK Government's Bounce Back Loans scheme can provide loans of up to £50,000. Visit https://findbusinesssupport.gov.scot/coronavirus-advice/sources-of-funding

Future Fund

The Future Fund Portal is open for applications, providing convertible loans - ranging from £125,000 to £5 million - to innovative UK companies, subject to at least equal match funding from private investors. Visit www.british-business-bank.co.uk/ourpartners/coronavirus-business-interruption-loan-schemes/future-fund/

Further information

For information on other potential support initiatives, you can access a handy guide here - updated by North Lanarkshire Council on behalf of local authorities - which includes info on VAT deferral, deferral of Self-Assessment Payment, Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, HMRC Time to Pay Service, Non-Domestic Rates Relief, support for water bills, Enterprise Relief Fund, arts funding and more.

Business Gateway workshops

For the time being, Business Gateway (BG) East Dunbartonshire workshops will be run remotely.

Visit https://www.bgateway.com/events?region=east-dunbartonshire&keyword for more information.

In addition, one-to-one BG meetings can be held over the phone, FaceTime, Skype, Cisco Webex and Zoom.

All BG East Dunbartonshire networking groups - ED-Net, ED-Netday and East Dunbartonshire Women in Business - are now being delivered remotely.

For more information, visit www.businessworks.scot or www.bgateway.com/local-offices/east-dunbartonshire/local-support, e-mail bgateway@eastdunbarton.gov.uk or check out Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. You can call Business Gateway East Dunbartonshire on 0141 578 8530.

* The Scottish Business Resilience Centre is also organising online webinar events. Follow its latest news on Twitter - https://twitter.com/SBRC_Scotland - or get in touch via www.sbrcentre.co.uk