Support for businesses from 1 April 2021

Milton Keynes Council is providing the following support to businesses as lockdown restrictions ease.

 

BE AWARE: A scammer in MK is contacting local businesses and illegally requesting payments for alleged outstanding Business Rates. The fraudster operates by the name of ‘Jack’ and is using an email address starting businessratesmk@ to conduct their illegal activities. If you’ve been contacted, please call Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 to help with their investigations. Please remain vigilant of fraudsters claiming to be someone they’re not. MK Council’s bank details can be found on our website and we will always send a bill before requesting payment.

 

  1. Restart grants

  2. Milton Keynes Discretionary Business Support Scheme

 

Restart Grants

On 3 March 2021, Government announced the introduction of one-off grant funding scheme from 1 April 2021 to provide support for non-essential retail, hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care and gym businesses in England.

The primary principle of the Restart Grant scheme is to support businesses that offer in-person services, where the main service and activity takes place in a fixed rate-paying premises, in the relevant sectors.

General Eligibility

The Restart Grant scheme is for businesses on the rating list only.

Businesses must have been trading on 1 April 2021 to be eligible to receive funding under this scheme. Please read this document about how we decide of a business trading.

Businesses must be involved in one of the following activities:

  • Non-essential retail
  • Hospitality
  • Leisure
  • Accommodation
  • Gym and sports
  • Personal care

Further details on which businesses are included and excluded in each of the above can be found here.

Further exclusions to all grant eligibility

  • Businesses that are not within the ratings system will not be eligible to receive funding under this scheme.
  • Businesses that have already received grant payments that equal the maximum permitted subsidy allowances will not be eligible to receive funding (a potential total allowance of £10,935,000 taking into account all grants previously received under the COVID-19 business grants schemes). Further information on subsidy allowance is available here.
  • Businesses that are in administration, insolvent or where a striking-off notice has been made, are not eligible for funding under this scheme.

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How much will you receive?

Strand 1 of the Restart Grant will support non-essential retail premises.

The following thresholds apply for these businesses:

  • Businesses occupying hereditaments appearing on the local rating list with a rateable value of exactly £15,000 or under on 1 April 2021 will receive a payment of £2,667
  • Businesses occupying hereditaments appearing on the local rating list with a rateable value over £15,000 and less than £51,000 on 1 April 2021 will receive a payment of £4,000
  • Businesses occupying hereditaments appearing on the local rating list with a rateable value of exactly £51,000 or over on 1 April 2021 will receive a payment of £6,000

Strand 2 of the Restart Grant will support hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care and gym business.

The following thresholds apply for these businesses:

  • Businesses occupying hereditaments appearing on the local rating list with a rateable value of exactly £15,000 or under on 1 April 2021 will receive a payment of £8,000
  • Businesses occupying hereditaments appearing on the local rating list with a rateable value over £15,000 and less than £51,000 on 1 April 2021 will receive a payment of £12,000
  • Businesses occupying hereditaments appearing on the local rating list with a rateable value of exactly £51,000 or over on 1 April 2021 will receive a payment of £18,000

If a business operates services that could be considered non-essential and also fall into another category, such as hospitality in the higher funding threshold, the main service can be determined by assessing which category constitutes 50% or more of their overall business.

The Restart Grant is a one-off payment.

The application closure date for this scheme is 30 June 2021 and final payments must be made by 31 July 2021. 

Apply for Grant  

 

Milton Keynes Discretionary Business Support Scheme

Milton Keynes Council has put in place a discretionary business support scheme from 1 April 2021 that will continue to help meet the immediate financial needs of local MK businesses who have been so hard-hit over this last year. This revised scheme will help local MK businesses to get back on their feet as the UK economy begins its recovery from the effects of the pandemic.

This includes funding for:

  1. Businesses who haven’t been able to access funding to date as they are not business rates payers.
  2. Local high street shops.
  3. Local business such as post offices, which although have been open during the lockdown, have suffered a steep drop in footfall.
  4. Local independent pubs, restaurants, cafes and shops in our rural communities.
  5. Local businesses which have slipped through the cracks of national and local business support schemes established to date.

Details of the full MK Discretionary scheme is available to read here and the summary of the full scheme can be viewed here.

Apply for Grant

 

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Apply for Grant 

 

Subsidy Allowance

Businesses that have already received grant payments that equal the maximum permitted subsidy allowances will not be eligible to receive funding (a potential total allowance of £10,935,000 taking into account all grants previously received under the COVID-19 business grants schemes). Further information on subsidy allowance is available here.

All grant payments are subject to tax

  • Grant income received by a business is taxable and will need to be included as income in the tax return of the business.
  • Only businesses that make an overall profit once grant income is included will be subject to tax.
  • Payments made to businesses before 5 April 2021 will fall into the 2020/21 tax year. Payments after 6 April 2021 will fall into the 2021/22 tax year.
  • Unincorporated businesses will be taxed when they receive the grant income.

Pre-payment checks

The local authority is required to undertake a number of pre payment checks.

This is a stricter position than that taken for previous COVID-19 business support grant schemes.

The Government will not accept deliberate manipulation and fraud. Any business caught falsifying their records to gain additional grant money will face prosecution and any funding issued will be recovered, as may any grants paid in error.

These checks include:

Using the records on Companies House to flag where organisations have recently become inactive.

Using a counter-fraud bank account checker to enable local authorities to: 

  • Verify the bank accounts of companies in receipt of these business grants; and 
  • Provide insight into whether the company was trading at the relevant date for these grants.

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Last Updated: 17 June 2021