The Highland Council today (Tuesday 2 March) widened eligibility and extended the deadline for businesses to apply for its Discretionary Business Grant Scheme.
The Council’s Economy and Regeneration Manager Andy McCann said: “We are pleased to advise, that following extra money being made available to us from the Scottish Government, we have now opened up the grant scheme to allow more businesses to apply.
“When we first launched the grant scheme we only had sufficient money to give a grant of £2,000 for 760 businesses. We have now exceeded this number of applications and the new funding means that we will be able to give grant to all eligible applicants but also now to offer grant support to even more businesses.”
The grant scheme remains focused on supporting those businesses who have, for whatever reason, fallen through the funding gaps left by the UK and Scottish Government grant schemes and who have experienced a reduction in trade. The extra funding provided has allowed the Highland Council to lower the percentage of trade lost from 50% to 30%.
The Council urges all affected businesses to go to it’s website – www.highland.gov.uk, take 15 minutes to read the guidance and if they consider themselves to be eligible, to gather the bank and business evidence required and to apply using the online form.
The Council has also extended the deadline for grants to be submitted by two weeks and are asking businesses to get their completed forms submitted by 19th March. Once staff have assessed all these applications and paid out grant, the council is hopeful that there are residual funds remaining, to provide successful applicants with a top-up grant.
Andy McCann added: “As this is now a larger grant scheme to administer, we ask that applicants bear with us as we process their applications and get payment out to them. We know how desperate businesses are for the funds and we will endeavour to get this money to eligible businesses as quickly as we can. Businesses can help us to do this by ensuring they get their application right first time and give us all the information we need.”