Information from the Scottish Government in conjunction with the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA) about the Strategic Framework Business Fund transition payment and the Scottish Business Restart Grant.
On 16th March 2021, linked to the further development of Scotland’s Strategic Framework, the Scottish Government announced plans to modify its approach to providing COVID-19 related financial support to businesses, as follows:
- the Strategic Framework Business Fund would end, with a final four-weekly payment on 22nd March 2021 and a two-week transition payment on 19th April 2021 (the Strategic Framework Business Fund Transition Payment); and
- concurrent payment of a one-off restart grant on 19th April 2021(COVID-19 Business Restart Grant).
This combined grant funding will be made available through powers conferred by Sections 126 and 127 of the Housing Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act 1996.
This document has no statutory basis, is offered without prejudice to relevant legislation and legal decisions, and does not constitute legal advice.
The document aims to inform a mutual understanding amongst local authority practitioners engaged in the administration of these grants. It includes specific information relating to the grants.
Given their responsibilities for managing public funds, it is up to local authorities to ensure that procedures for administering the grants are suitably robust, including due diligence to mitigate fraud and for audit purposes.
Local authorities are expected to seek recovery of overpayments, including pressing criminal charges where necessary, if fraudulent claims are found. Councils will not be held financially liable for overpayments associated with fraud and error. The exception to this would be circumstances where a council is found to be materially not compliant with the relevant UK Government fraud control guidance.
Ratepayers are eligible for these grants regardless of any arrears. However, local authorities have some discretion to withhold grant awards in very exceptional circumstances, where the business has significant outstanding arrears, which have been subject to a court decision.
Find out more about how the grants will be provided and who is eligible here.