Diane Dodds extends Covid support schemes as new restrictions kick in

Part B of the CRBSS scheme is open to supply chain firms and is targeted at a number of severely impacted sectors including cleaners
Gary McDonald Business Editor

ECONOMY Minister Diane Dodds has confirmed that the terms of the Covid Restrictions Business Support Scheme (CRBSS) have been extended, with the closing date for applications to Part A and Part B of the scheme extended to Wednesday December 16.

Under its terms, suppliers and service providers hit by the latest restrictions on hospitality and close contract businesses will be able to apply for a one-off taxable grant of up to £4,800.

Payments to eligible businesses are being extended to cover the latest restrictions agreed by the Executive and which kicked in today.

The Department for the Economy was initially allocated £40m for the CRBSS, with Part A opening on October 28 for businesses forced to close and Part B for supply chain businesses following last week.

But as with other grant supports schemes, distressed businesses seemingly eligible to claim insist the money has been slow to come through.

The minister said: “I'm committed to doing all I can to support businesses in these incredibly challenging times and in light of the latest measures agreed by the Executive, I'm extending the terms of the CRBSS so that affected eligible businesses will receive payments to cover the full period they are required to close, or severely limit, their business.

“Therefore, eligible businesses under both Part A and Part B will be paid for the period until 11.59pm on Thursday December 10.”

Part A of the scheme offers £600 a week to the businesses forced to close by the Covid-19 restrictions, but unable to apply under the main rates-based scheme operated by the Department of Finance.

Part B is open to supply chain firms “severely impacted” by the closure of businesses and is targeted at a range of sectors including food suppliers, cleaners and events firms.

Here, eligible businesses paying non-domestic rates directly to LPS are in line for £2,000 to £4,800 while businesses not paying rates can apply for £1,500 if restricted for five weeks, or £1,800 (six weeks).

Both parts of the CRBSS are being administered by Invest NI.

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