In the Budget earlier today, the Chancellor set out important measures to protect businesses and jobs in Elmbridge.
First, to protect incomes and livelihoods, the furlough and self-employment schemes, as well as the £20 per week uplift to Universal Credit, were extended. These measures have been vital for local residents. The furlough scheme has protected at least 17,500 local jobs, while thousands of residents have received grants through the self-employment scheme. The extension of these measures will ensure that residents will continue to be supported in the coming months.
Next, there was welcome news for local businesses. The business rates holiday for eligible retail, hospitality and leisure properties has been extended until 30 June. Beyond that, these businesses will receive 66% relief on their rates bills until April 2022, subject to different caps on the total relief received, depending on whether a business has been required to close during the current lockdown.
There were also new cash grants announced, worth up to £18,000 for hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care and gym businesses, and up to £6,000 for other, non-essential retail businesses. Local authorities, including Elmbridge, will receive an additional £425m to provide grants to local businesses. A new Recovery Loan Scheme will also launch next month, with banks providing loans of between £25,000 and £10 million to all businesses. Finally, the rate of VAT charged on hospitality, accommodation and attractions will remain at the reduced rate of 5% until the end of September, followed by a 12.5% rate until April 2022.
Local homebuyers will also be pleased to hear that the Stamp Duty cut has been extended. The Stamp Duty threshold will remain at £500,000 until the end of June, saving local homebuyers £15,000.
These measures will make a real difference in Elmbridge, supporting local businesses and continuing the protection for residents’ jobs and incomes. As ever, if you need any assistance in accessing any of the support available, please don’t hesitate to contact me.