We thought it might be useful to have a short summary of the key COVID Grants currently still available, so we asked our Corporate Advisory team to write just that. Whilst we can't be 100% comprehensive, here are the key ones we think could be of interest.
Strategic Framework Business Fund
If your business is required to close it premises by law or to significantly change its operations due to COVID-19 restrictions, you may be eligible to apply for grant funding.
Grant funding for eligible business will cover the period of any closures or restrictions with the earliest claim date being 2 November 2020. You can still apply even if you are required to close or modify your operations for less than 4 weeks.
Applications to the Strategic Framework Business Fund should be made through your local authority website.
Grants will be paid every 4 weeks in arrears as long as restrictions last. Grant payments are currently being paid up to the end of March, however would likely be extended should restrictions continue beyond March.
The Fund is separated into 2 grant categories: The Temporary Closure Grant and the Business Restrictions Grant.
A list of business types which are eligible is shown at the below link and includes: Hospitality, mobile close contact services, non-essential retail, accommodations, leisure and entertainment.
Re-start grants for hospitality & retail businesses
Grants are available for retailers (up to £7,500) and hospitality and leisure businesses (of up to £19,500) which are due to be paid in April in an effort to assist businesses re-open. These one-off 're-start grants' are designed to replace the Strategic Framework Business Fund (SFBF - as detailed above), to provide some money up-front to assist firms as they progress towards re-opening in line with Government guidelines. In order to receive these payments, eligible businesses must have already applied to the SFBF (and must have done so by 22 March 2021).
The Scottish Government has also stated that: "Targeted restart grants for businesses that are not in scope for the current SFBF support package may be considered if the Scottish Government receives further consequentials from the UK Government."
Local Authority Discretionary Fund
A £120 million fund will be distributed by local authorities across Scotland. It will help with the short-term financial challenges being experienced by businesses. Eligibility and criteria vary, so check your local authority website for details. This is for businesses who have not been eligible for previous business support grants.
The fund provides a one-off grant (varies across local authority). It applies to those who haven’t been able to access the Strategic Business Fund or other Government grants since October 2020.
While there is currently no closing date for the Discretionary Fund, budget is limited and will be allocated on a first come first served basis.
Newly Self Employed Hardship Fund & Mobile and Home-based Contact Services Fund
There are various grant support schemes aimed at the Scottish Tourism sector, from Tour Guides and Operators, to Coach Operators, Visitor Attractions and Hostel support. Find out more here: Funding & Grants for Scottish Tourism Businesses | VisitScotland.org