A number of initiatives and updates from Tandridge District Council…

Furlough scheme extended until October

The government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will remain open until the end of October, with furloughed workers continuing to receive 80% of their current salary, up to £2,500 a month.

From the start of August, furloughed workers will be able to return to work part-time with employers being asked to pay a percentage towards the salaries of their furloughed staff.

More information can be found on gov.uk.

Bounce Back Loans available

Small and medium sized businesses can now apply for quick and easy to access loans between £2,000 and £50,000.

The government guarantees 100% of the loan and there won’t be any fees or interest to pay for the first 12 months. After 12 months the interest rate will be 2.5% a year.

The government has published more information, including details on eligibility and how to apply.

Financial help is available – apply now for business grants

If your business or charity is eligible for the Small Business Rate Relief or the Expanded Retail Discount Scheme, please complete our application form. You will need your Business Rate account number, shown on your bill. Once we have your application, we will check it and contact you to let you know the outcome.

We’ve still got £6 million worth of business grants to award to around 550 businesses who haven’t yet applied.

Help for businesses not eligible for grants

Businesses not eligible to receive financial support through the Small Business and Retail Leisure and Hospitality grants could benefit from the government’s plan to launch an additional discretionary fund to help businesses.

This additional fund is aimed at small businesses with ongoing fixed property related costs. Businesses must be small, under 50 employees and they must also be able to demonstrate they have seen a significant drop of income due to coronavirus restriction measures.

We have received guidance from the government about these grants and we will let businesses know how they can apply for this funding as soon as we can. For more details visit gov.uk.

Self-employed Income Support Scheme now open

The Self-employed Income Support Scheme is now open, with those eligible under the scheme able to claim a taxable grant worth 80% of their average trading profits up to a maximum of £7,500 (equivalent to three months’ profits), paid in a single instalment.

Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC), which is administering the scheme, is inviting applicants to check their eligibility for the scheme online. HMRC has already started writing to those eligible for the scheme.

Surrey Chambers of Commerce advice and information

Surrey Chambers of Commerce (SCC) is hosting free Q&A sessions for businesses who may have staff on furlough, or anyone who is interested in developing their skills during the lockdown.

On Wednesday 27 May SCC is running a webinar about How to Digitally Transform your Business. More information on the Q&A sessions, hosted on Zoom, can befound on SCC’s website.

A selection of free or fully funded online and distance learning opportunities are also available at Activate Business School, Nescot College and Professional Training Solutions.

Help is also available from CM System Designs, for businesses wanting to build online tools, with SMEs offered a free consultation.