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Inland Waterways: Coronavirus

Question for Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

UIN 48963, tabled on 19 May 2020

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether waterways businesses will be eligible for the Local Authority Discretionary Grant Fund; and what recent discussions he has had with Cabinet colleagues on that eligibility.

Answered on

2 June 2020

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government has published detailed guidance for local authorities on the administration of the Local Authority Discretionary Grant Fund. The grant funding is specifically for small businesses that for whatever reason do not qualify for other COVID-19 support schemes. The guidance also sets out that the eligibility criteria for qualifying small businesses is not exhaustive, but is intended to illustrate for local authorities which types of business the Government considers should be a priority for the scheme.

Local authorities are encouraged to use this when deciding whether particular situations are broadly similar in nature to the examples given in the guidance and therefore eligible for grants, and to exercise their local knowledge and discretion to decide which cases to support, taking account of their relevance to the local economy. Waterways businesses are free to apply for grant funding.