The Bailiwick of Guernsey entered into Phase 5 of the exit from lockdown on Saturday 20th June, meaning that most sectors can go back to normal trading. However, there are some sectors that continue to be heavily affected by the Coronavirus, including businesses providing visitor accommodation. Therefore, additional support is available for that sector.
On the 26th June a grant scheme was announced, specifically for businesses that provide visitor accommodation. This scheme was to be introduced with effect from 1st July 2020, with the first payments in early August, relating to July. However the introduction is being moved back to 1st October.
The decision to delay the introduction of the scheme follows concerns expressed by members of the industry that they have had insufficient time to prepare for the move away from a payroll funding scheme to the new visitor accommodation grant scheme.
For this reason, the payroll co-funding scheme will continue to be made available for visitor accommodation businesses until 30 September. After this date, those businesses will no longer be able to apply for the payroll co-funding scheme. The new visitor accommodation grant scheme will be made available from this date instead, and eligible businesses will be required to apply for this scheme well in advance of this date.
The overall cost of supporting this sector was estimated to be £6.5m under the plans announced on 26th June. However, as the payroll co-funding scheme will continue for a further 3 months before the grant scheme is introduced, there will now be less money available for the grant scheme. This means the precise levels of grants and eligibility conditions are being revisited ahead of their introduction in October. The work to implement the grant scheme will commence as planned in order that the level of grants and eligibility will be known in advance of the 1 October start date.