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Hull City Council Coronavirus (COVID-19) Grant Funding Schemes

Covid-19 Grant Funding Schemes

On 17 March 2020 the Chancellor announced from 01 April 2020 a new £10,000 grant available to businesses that qualify for Small Business Rates Relief or the expanded Retail Discount with a rateable value below £15,000.

There is also a grant available of £25,000 for businesses in receipt of the expanded Retail Discount with a rateable value between £15,000 and below £51,000.

For the avoidance of any doubt businesses can only qualify for one of these grants.

The Council will not provide your business rates account number over the telephone to prevent fraudulent claims, therefore do not contact us to request this as all businesses have been sent their bill for 2020/21 to their business address.

We are writing to all businesses that we believe will be eligible for the above grants and you should expect to receive your letter in the next few days, upon completion of the online form we will arrange payment into the bank account specified.

Some claims may need to be manually checked so please allow up to ten working days before your payment is confirmed. Please do not contact the Business Rates team unless it is urgent to prevent any delay to payments being made.

If you do not have your account number, or are unable to access your new bill please contact the business rates team at ndrsr@hullcc.gov.uk  . You will receive a first contact within 2 working days but please be aware that this may delay your grant being issued, and will result in any successful grant being paid as a cheque payable to the business for security reasons.

Please note when completing the form the business postcode is the postcode of the business property. When asked about partnerships you will need to enter the first named associate on the account.

Exclusions

Businesses with a rateable value of £51,000 or over are not eligible for this scheme. Businesses which are not ratepayers in the business rates system are not included in this scheme.

Hereditaments occupied for personal uses e.g. private stables and loose boxes, beach huts and moorings, Car parks and parking spaces. Businesses which on the 11 March were in liquidation or were dissolved.

Changes and amendments

Any changes to the rating list (rateable value or to the hereditament) after the scheme eligibility date 11 March 2020 including changes which have been backdated to this date should be ignored for the purposes of eligibility.

Local authorities are not required to adjust, pay or recover grants where the rating list is subsequently amended retrospectively to the scheme eligibility date.

Where the Local Authority has reason to believe that the information that they hold about the ratepayer on the 11 March 2020 is inaccurate they may withhold or recover the grant and take reasonable steps to identify the correct ratepayer.

The Government will not accept deliberate manipulation and fraud – and any business caught falsifying their records to gain grant money will face prosecution and any funding issued will be subject to claw back. State aid rules will apply to these schemes.

Fraud prevention

Be aware at the current time there is an increased risk of fraud. This includes risks that someone may impersonate the Council either to commit fraud against your business or to gain information allowing them to submit an application for a business grant.

There are some simple steps you can take to protect yourself –

  1. Check the email address of the sender. Don’t click on or download anything you don’t trust – for example, if you get an email from a company with a strange email address.
  2. You may be contacted by someone offering to fill out the form for the business rate grant on your behalf.  Please don’t accept any offer to do this, even if they say they work for the Council.

If the Business Rates Team contact you regarding your grant –

  1. They will only provide links to government or Local Authority websites.
  2. They may have to ask you a question regarding your account which only you would know, in order to validate the grant application. However they will not ask you to divulge any personal information.

Do not reveal your business rates account number or bank details to anyone you are not sure of.

If you are still unsure please contact the Audit and Fraud Team at  audit&fraud@hullcc.gov.uk

For more information: http://www.hull.gov.uk/business/business-grants-and-funding/coronavirus-covid-19-grant-funding-schemes

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