England moves to Plan B
Following the Government announcement on 8 December England is now working to Plan B following the rapid spread of the Omicron variant in the UK. Please follow this guidance within your business setting:
- Face coverings are compulsory in most public indoor venues, other than hospitality.
- You should work from home if you can.
- An NHS Covid Pass is mandatory in specific settings. Use the NHS app to show your NHS Covid pass, a negative test result, full vaccination status or exemption to gain entry to certain venues.
Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant
The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak announced on 21 December 2021 that a one-off grant of up to £6,000 per property will be available to eligible businesses in the hospitality and leisure sectors, including accommodation, to support them with the effects of the Omicron variant of Covid-19. Bassetlaw District Council started administering this grant on Friday 7 January.
Your business may be eligible for the Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant if it:
- Is a hospitality, leisure or accommodation business
- Is reliant on delivering in-person services in the hospitality, leisure or accommodation sectors
- Was trading and occupies a property in Bassetlaw on which it pays business rates (or is in receipt of Small Business Rates Relief) on 30 December 2021
- Hasn’t exceeded the Covid-19 Business Grant Subsidy Allowance
Businesses will be entitled to receive a grant for each eligible hereditament. However, please review the full Government eligibility criteria for the Omicron Hospitality & Leisure Grant before completing the application form.
The table below provides examples of businesses that fall into the scope of each sector. Please check if your business is included before applying. In addition, please review the eligibility criteria for additional information on each sector. Hospitality (paragraphs 29 to 31), leisure (paragraphs 32 to 34) and accommodation (paragraphs 35 to 37), in addition to businesses that are not eligible under the scheme.
|Sector||Types of businesses|
Food Courts, Public Houses (pubs), Restaurants, Roadside Restaurants, Wine Bars, Cafes
|Leisure||Casinos and Gambling Clubs, Cinemas Museums and Art Galleries, Stately Homes and Historic Houses, Theatres, Zoos and Safari Parks, Amusement Parks, Theme Parks, Wedding Venues, Events Venues, Nightclubs and Discotheques, Arenas, Concert Halls, Tourist Attractions, Amusement Arcades, Soft Play Centres or Areas, Indoor Riding Centres, Clubs and Institutions, Village Halls, Scout or Cadet Huts, etc.|
|Accommodation||Caravan Parks, Caravan Sites and Pitches, Chalet Parks, Coaching Inns, Country House Hotels, Guest Houses, Hostels, Hotels, Lodges, Holiday Apartments, Cottages or Bungalows, Campsites, Boarding Houses, Canal Boats or other vessels, B&Bs, Catered Holiday Homes, Holiday Homes.|
Grant amounts are based on the rateable value of properties at 30 December 2021.
Eligible businesses will receive a grant of:
- £2,667 for each property with a rateable value of exactly £15,000 or under
- £4,000 for each property with a rateable value of over £15,000 and less than £51,000
- £6,000 for each property with a rateable value of exactly £51,000 or over
This is a mandatory scheme and the amounts paid are not at the discretion of the Council.
As it has been more than six months since the last grant programmes closed for applications on 30 June 2021, the Government has stipulated that eligible businesses need to submit a new application. No automated payments will be made related to previous successful grant applications.
To apply you must complete the Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant Application form. Before you start to complete your application, please read the grant overview details at the start of the application.
Information you will need to complete your application:
- 2021/2022 Business Rates Invoice
- A recent bank statement that covers a period within the last three months
- The total value of all Covid-19 business grants that your business has received to date, including grants paid by other Council’s. Please note: the grant administration team will not have the capacity to provide this information to businesses. You must provide this information by reviewing your bank account statements
Like previous grant application rounds we will aim to review your application within five working days. Successful applicants will receive the grant payment in their bank account within five working days of receiving an email confirmation from the Council.
Please note: If supporting information and evidence that is critical to your application is not provided on your application form, you will receive an email notifying you that your application has been closed and you will need to reapply and provide all the information requested based on your business circumstances. The Council has a limited time window to administer grants and recognises the urgency to get all grant payments out to businesses. As such, we are not able to contact individual businesses to request missing information.
Closing date for applications
Applications need to be submitted before close of business (5pm) on Monday 28 February, 2022 in order to meet the closing date set by the Government.
Additional information to businesses
- Grant income received by a business is taxable. The Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant will need to be included as income in your tax return
- Payments made to businesses before 5 April 2022 will fall into the 2021/22 tax year. Unincorporated businesses will be taxed when they receive the grant income
- Businesses that have already received grant payments that equal the maximum permitted subsidy allowances will not be eligible to receive funding
- Businesses that are in administration, insolvent or where a striking-off notice has been made, are not eligible for funding under this scheme
Additional Restrictions Grant
The Chancellor also announced additional funding for the Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG) on 21 December. The Additional Restrictions Grant is a discretionary scheme, to support businesses not eligible for the mandatory Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant scheme that have been severely impacted by the Omicron variant.
Like previous ARG rounds Bassetlaw is working with other Nottinghamshire Authorities on a shared policy to provide consistency in the eligibility criteria and grant awards. Once this policy is in place and approved the Council will send out further updates via our website, business support newsletter and social media.
A grant application form is under development so we can get this scheme live as soon as the policy is in place as we recognise the urgency of businesses to receive this support.
The Council has now received the Government's guidance on the support packages. We are working to get the application process online quickly so we can administer the scheme at the earliest opportunity.
Further details will be available on this web page once available and we will send out direct updates to businesses via our Business Support Newsletter and our social media channels. If you do not already receive our Business Support Newsletter and wish to receive updates direct to your inbox, register for the business support newsletter.
Wider Covid-19 Related Business Support
Details of the financial support available for businesses and self-employed individuals during COVID-19 can be found by visiting the Government Coronavirus financial support finder.
Recruitment and Redundancy Support
Extended Support for Apprenticeships
The Government has extended the apprenticeship hiring incentive in England to 31 January 2022 and an increase of payment to £3,000. In addition, £7 million will be invested in a new “flexi-job” apprenticeship programme in England, that will enable apprentices to work with a number of employers in one sector.
For further details on eligibility, what the funding can be spent on and payment instalments please visit the Government's Incentive Payments for Hiring a New Apprentice.
Extended Support for Traineeships
An additional £126 million for 40,000 more traineeships in England, funding high quality work placements and training for 16-24 year olds in 2021/22 academic year. For the first time ever, the government will fund employers who provide trainees with a new work experience placement, at a rate of £1,000 per trainee. The Traineeship work placement is on offer to all employers and during the qualifying period from the 1st August to 31st January each employer may support up to 10 Learners. The government has also expanded eligibility for traineeships to those with Level 3 qualifications and below, to ensure that more young people have access to high quality training.
For more details on traineeships, the benefits they can bring to your organisation and how you can support a young person by providing a work experience placement please visit:
Support for Employers from Jobcentre Plus – Recruitment and Redundancy Support
Jobcentre Plus has launched their new Employer Help website which offers a range of advice to help your business overcome challenges associated with COVID-19. Whether you are needing to expand rapidly, or worried about redundancies, you can find advice on next steps and the best ways to support your staff.
The D2N2 Redeployment Triage Service
The Redeployment Triage Service, administered by Futures who are the National Careers Service provider for the East Midlands, will match those recently made redundant with new work in sectors experiencing a surge in employment demand such as food retail, care, and distribution. The service also engages with employers needing to make redundancies to ensure a smooth transition for employees into new work. This information is for all businesses and employers across Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire who are having to make changes to their workforce as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic.
Information from our Business Rates team.
Important information about extended retail, hospitality and leisure discount
At the Budget on 3 March 2021, the Chancellor announced that eligible ratepayers would receive a discount on their business rates bills for the year 2021/22 of 100% for the first three months and 66% for the remainder of the year.
This 100% discount ended on 30th June 2021. A revised bill was issued from 1st July 2021 to 31st March 2022.
66% discount from 1st July 2021 to 31st March 2022
In line with the conditions set by the government for the funding of this relief, ratepayers may for the period from 1 July 2021 onwards only claim up to £2 million of Expanded Retail Discount in 2021/22 for hereditaments which based on the coronavirus rules at 5 January would have been required to be closed and £105,000 for other eligible properties (up to a cap of £2 million for all properties). This cash cap applied at a Group company level (so holding companies and subsidiaries cannot claim up to the cash cap for each company) and also to organizations which, although not a company, have such an interest in a company that they would, if they were a company, result in its being the holding company.
If you (or if appropriate a company in your Group) have received Expanded Retail Discount on any other property then you should contact the Council at email@example.com to advise the Council of any other Expanded Retail Discount you are being granted for premises. You will need to confirm that the award of Expanded Retail Discount does not exceed the cash cap for 2021/22.
If you have exceeded the cash cap on other properties and wish to refuse the Expanded Retail Discount granted, please contact the Council at firstname.lastname@example.org. This may be particularly relevant to those premises that are part of a large chain, where the cumulative total of Expanded Retail Discount received could exceed the cash cap.
The government and Bassetlaw District Council will not tolerate any business falsifying their records or providing false evidence to gain this discount, including claiming support above the cash cap. A ratepayer who falsely applies for any relief, or provides false information or makes false representation in order to gain relief may be guilty of fraud under the Fraud Act 2006.
Autumn Budget 2021 business rates measures for 2022/23 at the Budget on 27 October 2021
The Chancellor announced that the Government would provide a package of business rates measures to support businesses in England. For 2022/23 the Chancellor set out:
- A new relief for eligible retail, hospitality and leisure properties with 50% relief on rates bills up to £110,000 per business
- A freezing of the multipliers at 49.9p (small business multiplier) and 51.2p (standard multiplier)
- The extension of the current Transitional Relief and Supporting Small Business schemes
The scope of the discount for 2022/23 will return to pre-Covid-19 eligibility for retail properties. Hospitality and leisure properties will continue to remain in scope. Further details on the eligibility for the scheme will be included in further guidance in March 2022.
These changes will have effect from April 2022 to March 2023. Local authorities will be expected to use their discretionary relief powers (under section 47 of the Local Government Finance Act 1988 as amended) to grant the discount in line with the relevant eligibility criteria and should appear on the 2022/23 bills.
Advice from Environmental Health to businesses
From 15 December, certain venues and events will be required by law to check that all visitors aged 18 years or over are fully vaccinated (currently a full course of vaccination without the need for a booster, but this will be kept under review), have proof of a negative test in the last 48 hours, or that they have an exemption. This means that those aged 18 years or over must show their NHS COVID Pass, or an alternative proof of a negative test result, such as an email or text proof, to gain entry into these venues.
The use of the NHS COVID Pass is required as a condition of entry into the following places:
- nightclubs, dance halls and discotheques;
- other late night dance venues. These are any other venues that are:
- open between 1am and 5am;
- serve alcohol during this time;
- have a dance floor (or designated space for dancing); and
- provide music, whether live or recorded, for dancing.
- indoor events with 500 or more unseated attendees, where those attendees are likely to stand or move around for all or part of the event, such as music venues with standing audiences or large receptions;
- outdoor events with 4,000 or more unseated attendees, where those attendees are likely to stand or move around for all or part of the event, such as outdoor festivals
- any events with 10,000 or more attendees indoor or outdoor, such as large sports and music events
There are some settings that will be exempt from requirements to use the NHS COVID Pass including communal worship, wedding ceremonies, funerals and other commemorative events, protests, and mass participation sporting events.
Businesses can check the full guidance on how to carry out mandatory COVID-19 status checks at their venue or event on the Government website.
Helpful guidance on our Environmental Health page of our website has been put together for you, should you be considering this change to your food business.
If your business premises has been closed for some time or is being used less frequently, we would like to remind you of the Legionella risks in unoccupied/less occupied properties where water can stagnate within water systems.
The Government guidelines on what to do if someone develops symptoms of coronavirus when living on a traveller site, in a vehicle or on a canal boat.
How can you use marquees in your outdoor space? Guidance for local businesses on effectively using marquees in an outdoor space in a safe manner.
Approved Council Suppliers
If you are one of the Council’s approved suppliers and are wishing to submit an invoice, please submit this to us by email and quote the Purchase Order reference number. Unfortunately at this time, and in order to process payments in a timely manner, we are unable to accept paper invoices.
Please send all invoices to - email@example.com
- The East Midlands Chamber have created a Coronavirus hub on their website which is updated daily with the latest developments and new financial measures. The Chamber has introduced a £100,000 financial package to help support members affected by Covid-19. The fund will enable Chamber members which have been impacted by the lockdown restrictions in place because of coronavirus to claim a rebate of up to 100% of their membership fees, for the next three months.
- The D2N2 Growth Hub and D2N2 LEP have coronavirus webpages showing all available support and links to find out more and access it, including a Redeployment Triage Service from D2N2 LEP.
- British Independent Retailers Association has information containing advice for employers on health and safety advice and employment law.
- The Federation of Small Business has information which consists of various forms of advice to small business about coronavirus.
- The Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development has produced a fact sheet, which sets out how employers should respond to the threat from coronavirus.
- HMRC has launched a tax helpline to provide guidance to businesses concerned about paying their tax due to the impact of coronavirus.
- Companies House has produced guidance for if your business has been impacted by coronavirus and you need more time to file your accounts.
- Nottinghamshire County Council Employment and Skills Portal.
Last Updated on Friday, January 21, 2022