Chichester BID’s Response to Coronavirus
These are worrying times for businesses on the high street. However, we want to assure you that your BID Team is committed to keeping our Chichester levy payers as informed as possible and ensure you have the right tools to access any government support available to help during this time.
There’s no doubt that there are challenges ahead, but we’ll work with you to provide support however we can and ensure that the unique and vibrant character of Chichester’s high street survives this current situation.
With the rapidly changing nature of the COVID-19 outbreak, information and advice from the government can change quickly. The information below is kept under regular review and is updated often. However, for the most up-to-date information please be sure to check the government website.
The Prime Minister announced that we will move to Step 4 of the Government’s roadmap on Monday 19 July. This will see an end to most legal Covid-19 restrictions, removing social distancing and social contact restrictions and enabling remaining businesses to reopen. It is important to remember that Covid-19 has not gone away, so please remember the actions you can continue to take to keep yourselves and others safe. The Government has issued guidance on this, including recommending that people continue to wear face coverings in crowded areas, such as busy public transport. You can find out what will change and what you should do to protect yourselves and others by visiting: https:www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-response-summer-2021-roadmap/coronavirus-how-to-stay-safe-and-help-prevent-the-spread#keeping-yourself-and-others-safe
Regular testing can identify Covid-19 where symptoms are not present and can help you protect yourself and others. You can visit: https://www.westsussex.gov.uk/communitytesting orhttps://www.gov.uk/order-coronavirus-rapid-lateral-flow-tests to order packs of free rapid lateral flow test kits. Anyone with symptoms should continue to self-isolate immediately and book a free PCR test by visiting: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19 or calling 119.
On 16 August, the rules on self-isolating as a contact will change for people who are fully vaccinated and for under 18s.
For the latest government coronavirus outbreak FAQs detailing what you can and can’t do please click here.
Disposing of business waste (including PPE and face coverings)
Guidance on how to dispose of your personal or business waste, including face coverings and personal protective equipment (PPE), during the coronavirus pandemic has been published here.
Read more about the government response to coronavirus here.
For advice on Coronavirus from Chichester District Council including support and information for businesses click here.
For Chichester District Council’s general local service status click here.
Business Support Information
The Government has announced that the 100% Expanded Retail Relief and Nursery Relief schemes will be extended three months for the period 1 April 2021 to 30 June 2021. For the period 1 July 2021 to 31 March 2022 the scheme will be changing as follows:
From 1 July 2021 to 31 March 2022 businesses in receipt of the Expanded Retail Relief discount will receive a 66% reduction in the amount to pay. There will be a cash cap of £2million for businesses that were required to close as at 5 January 2021 and up to £105,000 for businesses permitted to open at that date.
From 1 July 2021 to 31 March 2022 businesses in receipt of the Nursery discount will receive a 66% reduction in the amount to pay. There will be a cash cap of £105,000
Businesses may choose to opt out of the relief schemes by emailing Chichester District Council at [email protected].
Please note the annual business rate bills for 2021/22 will be issued in March 2021 with 100% relief up to 31 March 2022. Revised bills will then be issued in June 2021 to reflect the above changes.
All grant schemes have now been closed by the Government
Furlough Scheme Extended
The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has been extended until September 2021 with employees receiving 80% of their current salary for hours not worked. Claim for your employee’s wages through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. To find out if you’re eligible and how much you can claim to cover wages for employees on temporary leave (“furlough”) due to coronavirus click here.
New Style Employment and Support Allowance
You may be able to claim New Style Employment and Support Allowance with, or instead of Universal Credit, depending on your National Insurance record. Click here for more information.
Statutory Sick Pay
To check if you can claim back Statutory Sick Pay paid to employees due to coronavirus click here.
For government information on what to do if you cannot pay your tax bill on time due to coronavirus click here.
Government Support for Businesses
For an overview of all the government coronavirus support currently available to businesses please click here.
The government has set up a Coronavirus Business Support Finder Tool. This tool helps businesses and self-employed people quickly and easily find out what financial advice is available to them during the coronavirus pandemic. You can access the tool here.
Government Advice: Working safely during coronavirus
The Government has published guidance on working safely during Covid-19 as part of step four of the roadmap: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-covid-19. This guidance reflects the measures different types of workplaces should follow from 19 July, and has been published to inform planning and business operations. It includes a number of guides which cover a range of different types of work including construction, shops, restaurants and offices. Organisations may need to use more than one of these guides as they think through what they need to do to keep people safe.
Guidance for events and attractions has also been published as part of this update. https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-covid-19/events-and-attractions
Managing risks and risk assessment at work
HSE also has advice on managing risk and carrying out risk assessments in the workplace including a risk assessment template and examples, click here to find out more.
Government guidance for people who work in or run restaurants, pubs, bars, cafes or takeaways – click here.
Coronavirus: HSE working safely advice and helpline
If you need help and advice on how to protect people from coronavirus (COVID-19) in your workplace, you can find useful information including a helpline on the HSE website here.
Advice for small businesses and the self employed
For advice and guidance for small businesses and the self-employed from Federation of Small Businesses click here.
Government Kickstart Scheme
A new £2 billion scheme will be launched to create hundreds of thousands of new, fully subsidised jobs for young people across the country. Those aged 16-24, claiming Universal Credit and at risk of long-term unemployment, will be eligible. Funding available for each six-month job placement will cover 100% of the National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week – and employers will be able to top this wage up. Click here to find out more.
Other Useful Links
Citizens Advice Bureau
General advice on how to get help, help for vulnerable people, going to work, paying your bills etc…
Find information from Citizens Advice including what to do if coronavirus affects your work here.
Chichester City Council: Chichester Community Development Trust
Chichester District Council is putting a number of measures in place to help the community in Chichester throughout the coronavirus pandemic. To find out more about food deliveries, the new online community platform and also information on volunteering to help click here.
We have been constantly monitoring the ongoing situation and have been in regular contact with the BID’s Board as well as Chichester District Council. We will continue to respond to businesses as quickly as possible and provide answers where we can.
Please do get in touch on 01243 773263 or email [email protected] if there is anything we can do to help at this time. If you would like to discuss the business support available to you, you can book a one-to-one appointment with our Client Relationships Manager, Mandy Medhurst, please email [email protected].