Businesses directly impacted by the restrictions put into place on 4th December by the Welsh Government to help control the spread of COVID-19 are being encouraged to look into the latest grant scheme that has been announced. The Restrictions Business Fund, which was launched at 10.00am on Wednesday 16th December and will be administered by Monmouthshire County Council, is designed to support businesses by providing cash flow and help them weather this challenging period. The grant seeks to complement the other schemes previously announced, to support businesses, charitable organisations and social enterprises (businesses that reinvest any profits for a social purpose, such as the benefit of a local community).

The reach of the Restrictions Business Fund covers hospitality businesses, which have been significantly impacted by the latest measures. This includes pubs, restaurants, cafés, bars, wine bars, hotels, cinemas, theatres, music venues and indoor play areas. It also supports those in the supply chains for hospitality businesses, as well as tourism and leisure, and their supply chains.

The fund consists of two separate grants: The Restrictions Business Fund Non Domestic Rate Grant and the Restrictions Business Fund Discretionary Grant. Businesses cannot apply for both grants.  If a business has a rates number they should apply for the Non Domestic Rate Grant (NDR), while those who do not have a number and do not pay business rates can apply for the Discretionary Grant.

If a hospitality business has already received an NDR grant under the recent Firebreak business fund they do not need to apply for this grant.  A payment will be made automatically using the information supplied in their original Firebreak application.

However, for businesses who did not receive this grant it is vital that they register, as payment will not automatically be made. This can be done via www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/restrictions-business-fund

vi Businesses will need to complete a short application form.  Hospitality businesses will need to confirm that they have been forced to close and tourism, leisure and retail businesses evidence (on a self-declared basis) that turnover has reduced by 40% or more as a result of the new restrictions.

“We appreciate the immense strain that the latest set of restrictions has placed on so many of Monmouthshire’s hospitality, leisure and tourism businesses that were already struggling against the overwhelming financial challenges that 2020 has presented,” said Councillor Bob Greenland, Deputy Leader of Monmouthshire County Council. “The Restrictions Business Fund will provide a lifeline to a wide range of businesses at a time when they are either unable to trade, or have had their income severely curtailed. Although those eligible businesses who received a Firebreak grant will automatically receive this latest grant, those who did not must register or they will miss out. I would ask businesses who think they may fall within the remit of this fund to visit our website and apply immediately.”

The Restrictions Business Fund Non Domestic Rate Grant offers two levels of support depending on the rateable value of the business: £3,000 (for those with a rateable value of £12,000 or less) or £5,000, (for businesses with a rateable value of £12,001 – £150,000).

Businesses that are not on the Business Rates System can apply for a Restrictions Business Fund Discretionary Grant of £2,000. This is to assist businesses that have been forced, or required to, close as a result of the national restrictions put in place for hospitality businesses. It also applies to those that estimate that the latest restrictions put in place will result in at least a 40% reduction in their turnover for December 2020 as compared to December 2019 (or September 2020 turnover if not trading in December 2019).

Further information about both the Non Discretionary and the Discretionary grants can be found at: www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/restrictions-business-fund All applications will be processed and paid as soon as possible, allowing for the Christmas and New Year holiday period.