Hucknall MP welcomes new support for businesses hit by Omicron variant

Hucknall MP Mark Spencer has welcomed the Chancellor’s announcement that the businesses most affected by the spread of the Omicron variant will be supported by £1 billion of Government funding.

Wednesday, 22nd December 2021, 11:05 am

Rishi Sunak MP, Chancellor of the Exchequer, announced earlier this week that businesses in the hospitality and leisure sectors in England will be eligible for one-off grants of up to £6,000 per premises.

This will result in a £683 million cash injection into the businesses that will be affected most by the spread of Omicron.

In addition to this, more than £100 million in discretionary funding will be made available for local authorities to support other businesses through the Additional Restrictions Grant Fund.

Hucknall MP Mark Spencer has welcomed fresh support for businesses affected by the Omicron variant. Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP/Getty Images

Local authorities in Nottinghamshire will have the discretion to allocate this funding to businesses most in need.

Those local authorities that have already allocated a majority of their ARG fund will be prioritised for the top-up.

To support businesses who are suffering from a growing number of self-isolating staff, the Government is reintroducing the statutory sick pay rebate scheme.

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This scheme will help those business with 250 employees or fewer, by reimbursing them for the cost of statutory sick pay, where it relates to Covid-related absence for up to two weeks per employee.

Claims will be able to be submitted retrospectively from mid-January.

Mr Spencer said: “I welcome the announcement from the Chancellor of the Exchequer that businesses will be eligible for extra support in the face of the disruption caused by the Omicron variant.

“The Chancellor and the Prime Minister have been keen to support businesses at every turn of the pandemic, I am glad to see that commitment to British businesses reiterated.

“I hope that businesses will be able to continue trading throughout.

"However, it is important that the Government recognise the effect that staff sickness and isolation will have on trading conditions.

“We all have a part to play in supporting our businesses, and that includes getting boosted and vaccinated.”