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Deadline extended for businesses to complete expression of interest for discretionary fund

Businesses across Cornwall ineligible for Government support now have until Wednesday 24 June to register an expression of interest for discretionary funding.  

Last month the Government gave Cornwall £13.5m for the discretionary business support fund - a figure which the Council has said is not enough to meet the needs of small and micro businesses which are struggling in the wake of the coronavirus shutdown.   

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The Council has asked businesses which do not fall into the groups prioritised by the Government for this new pot of money to complete an expression of interest. This will help build a clear picture of the level of need across Cornwall and further support efforts to lobby Government for more funding. The Council has extended the deadline as it considers more than 2,100 applications to the Government’s discretionary business support fund. It expects to complete this process by the end of the week and businesses which have been unsuccessful will have the option to submit an expression of interest. 

Tim Dwelly, cabinet portfolio holder for economy, culture and planning, said; “So far we have received more than 3,000 expressions of interest from businesses we can only help if Government increases its original budget. This is a huge and, quite frankly, worrying number - each one represents a business suffering as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.  

“When Government allowed self-employed people to apply, which we welcomed, the result was a massive increase in the number of applications. What we now need is for Government to increase the budget we can use to match the extra demand created by their rule change. 

“We will continue to work with the business community to lobby Government for more funding. In the meantime, if you run a business and have been unable to access Government funding, please submit an expression of interest and help us to present the true picture of how the coronavirus shutdown has affected Cornwall.”