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Luton Borough Council

Financial support and advice

Grants

Details of financial support available covering the period of national restrictions (5 November to 2 December) and during the introduction of the Tier system in place since 2 December.

There are three business grants available, they are:

Government support finder

Job Retention Scheme

The scheme has been extended until March 2021 with employees receiving 80% of their current salary for hours not worked and further economic support announced up to a cap of £2,500 and employers will pay employer National Insurance Contributions (NICs) and pension contributions only for the hours the employee does not work.

It will operate as the previous scheme did, with businesses being paid upfront to cover wages costs.

Job Support Scheme

The Job Support Scheme, which was due to start on 1 November 2020, has been postponed as the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is being extended until December.

Kickstart scheme

Employers looking to create job placements for young people could apply for funding as part of the Kickstart Scheme.

The scheme can be used to create new 6 month job placements for young people who are currently on Universal Credit and at risk of long-term unemployment. The job placements should support them to develop the skills and experience they need to find work after completing the scheme.

Self-employed

Self-employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS)

Government increases support under the third instalment of the UK-wide Self-Employment Income Support Scheme, with people receiving 80% of average trading profits for November.

Grants will also be paid faster than previously planned – with the claims window opening at the end of November rather than the middle of December

Updated the guidance to clarify eligibility conditions for Universal Credit and New Style Employment and Support Allowance and the Test and Trace Support Payment as other financial help that can be claimed.

Loans and Funds

The following schemes have now been extended until 31 January 2021.

Future Fund will issue convertible loans between £125,000 to £5 million to innovative companies which are facing financing difficulties due to the coronavirus outbreak.

The Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS) provides financial support to larger businesses affected by coronavirus (COVID-19).

The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) provides financial support to smaller businesses affected by coronavirus (COVID-19).

The The Bounce Back Loan Scheme (BBLS) enables smaller businesses to access finance more quickly during the coronavirus outbreak.

Businesses driving innovation and development

The Sustainable Innovation Fund, which will help companies recovering from the impact of coronavirus by supporting projects with costs between £100,000 and £500,000, closes at the end of September 2020.

Relief and further help

Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme

The Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme will repay employers the Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) paid to current or former employees.

The repayment will cover up to two weeks starting from the first qualifying day of sickness, if an employee is unable to work because they either:

Commercial rent

Commercial tenants who cannot pay their rent because of coronavirus will be protected from eviction and measures in place to support ongoing conversations between landlords and tenants about voluntary arrangements.

Extra protection for businesses with ban on evictions for commercial tenants who miss rent payments.

Filing of accounts

Businesses will be given an additional 3 months to file accounts with Companies House to help companies avoid penalties as they deal with the impact of COVID-19.

Companies to receive 3-month extension period to file accounts during COVID-19.

Tax cuts and deferrals

Self assessment

VAT

The rate of VAT applied on most tourism and hospitality-related activities will be cut from 20% to 5%.

Find out more

Advice and guidance available locally

Support from local business

Our Economic Development team is on hand to offer support and advice local businesses [email protected] .​

We can also help support your business to upskill people who are now looking at different way of working or for staff who are looking for a new role due to redundancy through Luton Adult Learning.

Contact us on [email protected] for more details or visit Luton Adult Learning.

SEMLEP

SEMLEP’s Growth Hub is offering businesses support, advice and guidance to help local businesses navigate the current situation. Their business advisers are available to talk to business owners and directors about the critical areas of their business affected by coronavirus.

To contact the team, please email [email protected] or call 0300 01234 35.

See the SEMLEP website for more information on the support available for businesses.

Bedfordshire Chamber of Commerce

- see BCC website

Federation of Small Businesses

- see FSB website

The Business Investment District (BID)

The BID’s business support hub has been launched to help Luton town centre businesses manage during the coronavirus crisis.

#LutonBusinessSupport acts as a matchmaking service - to link those who can offer support with those town centre businesses seeking help, advice and/ or guidance. It is also designed to be a community within which businesses can share experiences, ask questions and offer support and advice.

At the heart of this new business hub is a #LutonBusinessSupport Facebook group.

Also see guidance on health and safety

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© 2020 Luton Council, Town Hall, Luton LU1 2BQ