The Council is highlighting to local businesses a number of important dates, reminders, changes and up-to-date information relating to the Coronavirus emergency.
On 12 May, the UK Government extended its furlough scheme to run to the end of October 2020. The scheme will continue in its current form until the end of July, then changes will be introduced to allow more flexibility from the start of August.
From 1 July, employers can bring employees that have previously been furloughed back to work - for any amount of time or any shift pattern - while still being able to claim Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) grant for their normal hours not worked. The scheme will close to new entrants from 30 June.
Key dates for changes are:
• 30 June 2020 - the original Government furlough scheme will close to new entrants (note: while the original scheme will close then, the LAST DAY on which an employee could be furloughed for the first time was 10 June)
• 1 July - the second phase of the scheme commences. From this date, the scheme will only be available to cover the wages of employees who were furloughed at some point under the first phase. At the same time, employers will be able to bring back furloughed employees on a part-time basis, with the furlough scheme contributing to 80% of their salary (subject to the relevant cap) for their normal hours not worked.
• 31 July - employers claiming under the first phase must have completed and submitted all claims for the period up to 30 June.
• 1 August - from this date, the scheme will no longer cover the costs of employers’ NIC and pension contributions on furloughed wages - employers will need to cover this cost.
• 1 September - the Government contribution will be reduced to 70% of wages, up to a cap of £2,187.50 per month for the hours the employee does not work. Employers must make up the difference of 10% to bring furlough payments to 80% of wages (up to a cap of £2,500) for unworked hours, and also cover NIC and pension contributions on furloughed wages.
• 1 October 2020
- the Government contribution will be reduced to 60% of wages, up to a cap of £1,875 per month for the hours the employee does not work. Employers must make up the difference of 20% to bring furlough payments to 80% of wages (up to a cap of £2,500) for unworked hours, while also covering NIC and pension contributions for furloughed wages.
Find out more about how the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is changing hereBUSINESS RATES GRANT - DEADLINE 30 JUNE
The Welsh Government introduced two grants to support businesses. These grants are available to businesses that were registered to pay rates on their premises on 20 March 2020. The aim for both grant schemes was to get financial support to eligible businesses and not-for-profit organisations as soon as possible to help them remain viable.
UPDATE: Applications for these grants will close at 5pm on 30 June. Although grant payments will be made after this date, the Council will not be able to accept further application, as instructed by Welsh Government.
To check your eligibility, please see the Council’s website link hereWelsh Government Coronavirus Guidance
For the latest guidance on returning to work safely, useful toolkits for businesses, downloadable signs, etc, visit https://gov.wales/coronavirus
Additional guidance to help employers, employees and the self-employed understand how to work safely during the coronavirus pandemic has been released by the UK Government.
Although this on applies to English regions only, it does provide a good insight on how business might have to adapt their workplace when reopening.
Further details are available here Business Wales Webinars
Business Wales have launched a series of FREE webinars adapted on how business can react to the changing times due to Covid-19 Coronavirus, these include:
• Importance of diversification in troubled times and how to diversify quickly
• Recovery and Growth, Planning Post Coronavirus Trading
• Accessing Business Finance
Links to these can be found here