Important update: Chancellor's statement and what it means for you - 08/07/2020

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I hope you are well.

Today The Chancellor today announced a series of exciting schemes to help businesses and people who have been impacted most by the pandemic.
 
In addition to lobbying for those who have been left out it is my priority to make sure that businesses and residents in Scunthorpe make the best use out of all Government coronavirus support packages.
 
Please share this to around to make sure that we all maximise the support available, and if you know anyone that needs help – do send them my way.

SEEKING CLARITY FOR BUSINESSES STILL ASKED TO CLOSE

I have made numerous representations on behalf of our local businesses including (but not limited to) our beauticians, massage therapy centres, gyms, pools, and activity clubs.

I am pleased to see that the Prime Minister confirmed during PMQs today that the government will be giving a clearer timescale for the reopening of closed industries later this week – as usual, I will keep you updated.

APPLICATION DEADLINE FOR NLC DISCRETIONARY GRANT EXTENDED

Following a conversation with North Lincolnshire Council’s business team earlier today, I can confirm that they have extended the application period for discretionary grants until 15th July. 

This grant is available to businesses who have continued fixed costs and have been heavily impacted by the pandemic, who were not eligible for the council grant. 

Please download the application form here, and send it to businessinfo@northlincs.gov.uk. Do contact the businessinfo email or their number 01724 297330 if you have any further questions regarding your application. 

CHANCELLOR'S ANNOUNCEMENTS:
WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR US? 

 

Job Retention Bonus:

For every furloughed employee that remains employed until the end of January 2021, the government will pay their employer £1000. This employee must earn above £520 per month on average between the end of October and January for you to be eligible.

How do I apply:
Payments will be made from February 2021. Further details to be announced by the end of this month.
 

Kickstart Scheme: 

Six-Month Work Placements for those aged 16-24 who are on Universal Credit and at risk of long-term unemployment. The government will provide 100% of the National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week along with employer NI contributions, and an amount to cover overheads. 

How do I apply:
Employers can apply from next month, with the first batch of Kickstarters beginning this Autumn. There will be no cap on the number of Kickstart placements available.

 

Apprenticeship boost: 

From 1st August to 31st January 2021, employers that hire new apprentices will get an additional £2,000 per apprentice under 18, and £1,500 for every apprentice aged 25 and over. 

How do I apply:
To start up an apprenticeship, please have a look at the simple step-by-step guide on the gov.uk website that explains how employers can obtain the training and funding available

 

Traineeship boost: 

For every trainee with work experience, the government will provide £1,000 to the employer. Eligibility will be expanded to those with Level 3 qualifications and below, and the government has promised that they will triple the number of places.

How do I apply:
You can learn more about traineeships here, where there is information on how to contact the National Apprenticeship Service who help employers to set traineeships up.
 

Stamp Duty cut: 

From today until 31 March 2021, the government will temporarily increase the Nil Rate Band of Residential Stamp Duty Land Tax, in England and Northern Ireland, from £125,000 to £500,000. Nearly nine out of ten people getting on or moving up the property ladder will pay no Stamp Duty at all.
 

I am currently working with North Lincs Council to see what we can do to facilitate jobs, trainees, and apprenticeship recruitment in our area. 

Further Support for Hospitality 

 

VAT Cut: 

From 15th July to 12th January 2021, VAT on food and non-alcoholic drinks from hospitality outlets, as well as accommodation and admission to attractions, will be reduced from 20% to 5%

How do I apply:
Further guidance on this will be published by HMRC in the coming days.

 

Eat Out to Help Out: 

Diners can get 50% off meals and non-alcoholic drinks, up to £10 per person, at participating restaurants, bars and cafes when they eat in. The scheme is valid all day every Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday during August. Participating restaurants and establishments will be reimbursed for the discount they pass onto customers. 

How do I apply:
Guidance and registration details for food service businesses, will be published tomorrow. Restaurants and outlets can register for the scheme from Monday 13 July. 

 

OTHER KEY UPDATES

Use of snooker tables in pubs

Following questions from businesses I have asked North Lincs Council for clarity and have been advised that:

“people can play snooker as long as social distances and circulation between tables is maintained. Appropriate risk assessments are in place and users bring their own cue and chalk. It is also suggested that tables and balls are cleaned after each game. North Lincs Council can help with risk assessments as required.”

Self-Employed support 
Webpage created to help those getting less or no work after reopening. Remember that if you are impacted by coronavirus you can claim for the second wave of Self-Employed Income Support Scheme from 17th August. Details here. 

Paying Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme Back:
Guidance has been released on how to pay BACK Job Retention Scheme grants if you have overclaimed. This can be done by correcting it in your next claim or by making a payment to HMRC.

Place of Worship Protective Security Fund
The fund is now open for applications again this year. Applications are open until August 9th. More information on applying can be found here, and the application form is here.

Care home support 
Staff to be given coronavirus tests every week and residents monthly. Repeat testing will be initially prioritised for care homes primarily looking after over 65s or those with dementia before being rolled out to all adult care homes. More here.
 
Test and Trace
Information about how the staff, customer and visitor records shared with the Department of Health and Social Care, to aid Test and Trace, are used and retained can be found here.

Employee Expenses and Benefits
Some information from HMRC on how to treat expenses and benefits during the Coronavirus Pandemic.
 
Temperature Screening
 A reminder from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency that temperature screening, through thermal cameras or something else, cannot be solely relied on to determine whether someone has Coronavirus. Please read here.

International Travel 
The list of countries now exempt from the ‘all but essential’ travel advice can be found here. And the government have released a list of the countries where people will NOT have to self-isolate for 14 days on their return to England, as we have established travel corridors with them. That list is here.
 
Green Recovery Challenge Fund 
 £40 million is to be given to charities and environmental orgs for projects to restore nature and beat climate change whilst creating and saving jobs. Eligibility and bidding will be set out in due course.
 

As ever I am here if you need help or further clarifications. Do share this with other local businesses as I am keen for us to benefit as much as possible.

Have a good evening and take care,
Holly 

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