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Support for businesses during coronavirus outbreak

31 March 2020

Given the pace of change of information please access the latest information on our coronavirus page

Share the advice, not the virus.

Rochdale Borough Council is working to support the borough's businesses during the current time of hardship caused by the coronavirus outbreak.

The authority has written to over 4,000 businesses to let them know about government grant funding available and payments will start being made this week.

Businesses that were eligible for Small Business Rate Relief on 11 March 2020 will be eligible for a one-off grant of £10,000 to meet their ongoing business costs. Businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors with a rateable value of up to and including £15,000 will be eligible for a £10,000 grant. Those with a rateable value of between £15,000 and £51,000 will be eligible for a £25,000 grant. 

On top of this, the council is currently processing changes to the Retail Relief scheme which will mean businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sector will pay no business rates in 2020-21, regardless of their rateable value. The existing Retail Relief scheme previously covered retail properties only, with a rateable value up to £51,000 but the Government has widened the Retail Relief scheme to include the hospitality and leisure sector and the £51,000 rateable value ceiling has been removed.

'Determined'

All businesses affected will receive a revised bill to confirm that they will not need to pay any rates for 2020-21. Those businesses that pay by Direct Debit and now qualify for the relief will not have a payment taken.

Councillor John Blundell, the council's cabinet member for regeneration, business, skills and employment, said:

"The coronavirus is having an impact on every aspect of life in the borough and it's creating an economic crisis too. Our staff are working hard to provide the area's businesses with some much needed support at this difficult time and we are determined to get those vital business grants paid to those in need as soon as possible. I know many local businesses are struggling at the moment so it's important to do all we can to protect jobs and position ourselves for the eventual recovery.

"On top of the business grants, many premises will not pay business rates this year, which I hope will be of some help. We will continue to keep businesses informed of any further support or changes as they happen on our coronavirus page and on our social media."