***Business Rate Bills for 2022/23 - annual bills were posted by 16th March 2022***
During the recent Covid-19 pandemic Gosport Borough Council distributed £24.3 million to local businesses via 13 grant schemes. For most of these schemes the eligibility criteria were set by the Government and mainly targeted businesses from specific sectors occupying commercial premises.
However via the Local Authority Discretionary Grant Fund and Additional Restrictions Grant we were given more flexibility in determining the eligibility criteria. As a result many local businesses not eligible for the national schemes were also supported.
The latest support scheme to be announced by the Government is the Covid-19 Additional Relief Fund (CARF).
Covid-19 Additional Relief Fund (CARF)
This discretionary business rates relief scheme provides support to those businesses affected by the pandemic but that are ineligible for existing support linked to business rates i.e.
- Extended Retail Discount (covering Retail, Hospitality and Leisure).
- Nursery Discount.
- Airport and Ground Operations Support Scheme (AGOSS).
In addition the Council must not award relief:
- In respect of premises for a period when it is unoccupied, other than temporary periods of closure associated with local or national restrictions, under which the property continues to be classified as occupied for the purposes of business rates.
- To those occupiers that are already receiving full rates relief.
The relief will be applicable to the ratepayer liable for and occupying property for which business rates is charged during the financial year 2021/22. Please note that any relief awarded is at the discretion of the council.
The Government's allocation methodology uses the change in Gross Value Added (GVA) as a proxy for the economic impacts of Covid-19 on each business sector. The calculation uses the change in GVA compared to February 2020 for the period April 2020 to March 2021. This data is split by business sector according to the first level Standard Industrial Classification (SIC).
Gosport Borough Council will use this methodology and data to determine the amount of relief applied to those local businesses that are eligible.
For more details of this scheme please see the Government's CARF Local Authority Guidance.
How the relief will be paid
There is no need to apply for this relief. Those eligible will have the awarded amount automatically credited to their business rates account and confirmed by a letter from the Council during the first half of October 2022.