Q. What is the purpose of this funding?
This funding is being made available to support local economies and businesses that have been adversely impacted by national and local restrictions imposed to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Q. How much is the Additional Restrictions Grant Extension?
The Additional Restrictions Grant Extension is a fixed sum of £2,000.
Q. Which businesses are eligible?
Local authorities have discretion to determine which businesses to support and how much funding to provide. However, local authorities are encouraged to support businesses that have been severely impacted by the restrictions not just directly, but also due to being part of the supply chain
To be eligible for this grant, your business must:
- operate in Huntingdonshire
- have been open for business as usual before the national restrictions came into force on 5 November 2020
- have experienced a significant loss of income (over 30%) directly related to the national lockdown restrictions.
All charities without a Business Rates number are eligible to apply for a grant. Charities do not have to demonstrate a significant loss of income.
You should apply for the Additional Restrictions Grant Extension if you operate from premises:
that do not have a rateable value and you have been required to close by law because of national lockdown measures, for example if you pay rent to a ratepayer for a shared space
where you do not pay business rates and have not been forced to close due to the national restrictions, but your business has been adversely impacted because of the lockdown. For example, your business may form part of the supply chain for other businesses that have been forced to close. In this category your business will need to demonstrate reduced sales, revenue or income of 30% or more to qualify.
where you pay business rates and have not been forced to close due to the national restrictions, but your business has been adversely impacted because of the lockdown. For example, your business may form part of the supply chain for other businesses that have been forced to close. In this category your business will need to demonstrate reduced sales, revenue or income of 30% or more to qualify.
Q. I don’t have the documentary evidence required as set out in the eligibility criteria – are there any alternatives that would be acceptable?
The evidence we have requested as part of the application process must be provided in order to be considered for a grant under this scheme.
Q. How do I apply and get updates on my application?
Applications can be made via your MyHuntingdonshire account.
If you don’t have a MyHuntingdonshire account it is very easy to create one.
If your application has passed through our mandatory pre-payment and anti-fraud checks, you will receive a BACS remittance note to the email account you registered with at the time of applying once funds are in the process of being sent to your bank account.
Q. Must a business have been trading on the first full day of restrictions or before restrictions to be eligible?
A business must have been trading before restrictions came into force to be eligible (4 November 2020).
Q. What is the time period in which to demonstrate reduced sales, revenue or income of 30% or more?
We will rely on your accountant's/bookkeeper’s professional judgement to demonstrate 30% or more as a result of COVID restrictions, for example by comparing the loss in this year to the previous year, or an assessment against your forecast for this trading year.
Q. Can I use a bookkeeper instead of an accountant?
Yes you can use a bookkeeper instead of an accountant but they must be registered with the International Association of Bookkeepers.
If you are using an accountant, they must be qualified. If you don’t have an accountant, the following links may be useful:
Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) - search Cambridgeshire
Association of Chartered Certified Accountants - search Cambridgeshire
Alternatively the Cambridgeshire Chamber of Commerce may also be also to help signpost you to local qualified accountants.
We ask for accountants/bookkeepers to be registered on these sites to assure the council there is a low level risk of fraud.
Q. Are grants made under the scheme subject to tax?
Grant income received by a business is taxable, therefore the Additional Restrictions Grant Extension will be subject to tax. Only businesses that make an overall profit once grant income is included will be subject to tax.
Q. Are there any conditions attached to this grant funding?
Recipients of grant funding must comply with all the scheme conditions, including State aid requirements and the provision of information to the local authority to support monitoring and assurance. By accepting the grant, each recipient confirms that they are compliant with the conditions for the scheme.
If a local authority subsequently finds that this self-declaration is incorrect, it will be able to take action and the business would be liable for clawback.
Q. How long is the scheme open for?
This scheme is open for applications until 31 January 2021. However, there is a limited amount of money and grants will be issued on a first-come first-served basis.
If the fund is fully allocated before 31 January we will update the Additional Restrictions Grant Extension page and will stop accepting applications. Any claims in progress that are not completed before the funding is fully allocated will be placed on hold (in date order of receipt) and may receive alternative funding if it becomes available.
Q. Will there be delays with my application owing to the Christmas and New Year period?
We are expecting to receive a high volume of applications over the Christmas and New Year period and we will process them as soon as we can. Initial processing of applications will take 3-5 working days from the date of submission.
However, please note that as there are three bank holidays falling within this period, it will take longer for funds to reach bank accounts.
Q. When will I receive the money?
We aim to have processed correctly submitted applications within 15 working days of completing our validation checks. Please be aware there are 3 bank holidays during the Christmas period.
Q. Will parish councils be eligible for this fund?
Yes, town and parish councils are eligible if they meet all the scheme criteria (the precepting authority exclusion does not apply to this fund). Please refer to the eligibility criteria.
Q. Can businesses that do not pay business rates receive support under this scheme?
Yes, we are using this scheme to support eligible businesses outside of the business rates system.
Q. Can businesses that are eligible but don’t want or need funding opt out?
A business does not have to apply and may decline the grant.
Q. Is there an appeals process for businesses under this scheme?
There is no appeals procedure.
Q. Do State aid rules apply?
Yes. Businesses will be required to confirm that they comply with the scheme conditions, for example that they did not fall within the definition of an undertaking in difficulty on 31 December 2019 (excluding small and micro businesses) and have not received more than the maximum permitted funding for State aid.
Q. Will the council undertake any fraud checks?
In accordance with the government’s guidance, applications to the grant fund will be subject to anti-fraud checks (including with third-party agencies) prior to payment of grants. If fraudulent claims are subsequently detected after the grant is awarded, we reserve the right to pursue reclaiming those monies.