Financial support for residents, communities and local businesses during COVID-19 outbreak
All 70,500 households across the borough are automatically receiving a council tax payment holiday in April and May 2020, with council tax bills being issued in coming weeks to confirm payments will resume from June 2020 for 10 months.
Working-age residents eligible for the Council Tax Reduction Scheme have also had their council tax bill reduced by up to an additional £200, supporting a further 1,400 households.
Offering particular support to the borough’s most vulnerable residents, the council has awarded £200,000 to Basingstoke Voluntary Action, enabling it to provide grants to community groups so that they can provide support and distribute essential supplies to residents unable to leave their homes.
Following the announcement of financial support by the government, the council is also supporting eligible local businesses through a combination of business rates relief and grants.
Leisure, retail and hospitality businesses, as well as early years providers, estate agents, letting agencies and bingo halls, will not pay business rates in the 2020/21 financial year, supporting an estimated 820 local businesses at an additional cost of around £31 million.
Grants of £10,000 and £25,000 have also been made accessible to an estimated 1,600 eligible local businesses at a cost of almost £21 million. So far, grants totalling over £16 million have been paid to over 1,200 eligible businesses.
To further boost the available financial support for businesses, the council has made a three-month rent and service charge holiday available for all 344 small businesses in council-owned properties with annual rents of up to £50,000.
Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council Leader Cllr Ken Rhatigan said: “I am delighted that we have been able to make this significant level of financial support available during this uncertain time.
“These vital measures will benefit all households in our borough, help our most vulnerable residents to access essential supplies, such as food and medicine, and provide support for local employers to help protect people’s jobs for the future.”
For more information about further support for residents, communities and businesses, visit www.basingstoke.gov.uk/coronavirus