Basingstoke: Council praised for support for businesses

Basingstoke and Deane Council has distributed more than £19 million to 1,423 local businesses which are struggling during the pandemic – 97% of its total government allocation.

Speaking at a Downing Street Press Conference Local Government Secretary Robert Jenrick praised the best performing local authority staff across the country who he said had ‘worked day and night’ to get the much-needed grants to SMEs.

Data has been released by the government on the amount of money distributed to SMEs by every local authority as part of the two grant schemes launched to help businesses deal with coronavirus. It shows Basingstoke and Deane has distributed  £19,135,000 of its total £19,716,000 allocation.

Commenting on the work being carried out by Basingstoke and Deane, council leader Ken Rhatigan said: “We know this is an unsettling time for businesses across the borough and we have been working hard to administer financial support for local businesses who are eligible on behalf of the government as quickly as possible.

“We took a proactive approach to ensure this vital support was provided to businesses as quickly as possible and as part of this we have been contacting eligible businesses across the borough in order to get the necessary information to ensure grants are paid quickly.”

Businesses who receive Small Business Rate Relief are eligible for a £10,000 grant, with a few exclusions such as properties occupied for personal uses and car parking spaces. A second grant scheme focuses on the retail, leisure and hospitality sector and pays a grant of £25,000 to eligible businesses with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000 and a grant of £10,000 to eligible businesses with a rateable value of £15,000 and below.