Tuesday, July 5, 2022
NewsCoronavirus NewsNew £80m Covid recovery fund unveiled for Scotland

New £80m Covid recovery fund unveiled for Scotland

A NEW £80m Covid Economic Recovery Fund has been unveiled to help Scots communities and businesses post-pandemic.

The fund is targeting support for these sectors in the hopes of helping Scotland as it moves to a new phase in the Coronavirus pandemic.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said that councils will have the flexibility to target support either using existing schemes or place based investment programmes, or individual local authority grant schemes.

Councils will also be able to use the funding to support low income households.

Edinburgh skyline.
The fund is an attempt to aid the recovery of Scots communities and businesses. Photo by Gru Stark on Unsplash

In addition, a further £3 million has been allocated to the City Centre Recovery Fund, which supports sustainable economic recovery for seven city local authority areas including by driving footfall to businesses hit hard by the pandemic.

The Scottish Government will today publish a revised Strategic Framework which will set out an updated approach to managing and recovering from COVID-19.

The First Minister said:

“This £80 million Covid Economic Recovery Fund allows councils to consider the needs of local businesses, communities and households and to target support to maximise economic recovery in their areas.

“We know public health measures which were necessary to control COVID-19 have had a severe economic impact and, since the start of the pandemic, businesses have benefitted from more than £4.4 billion in support from the Scottish Government.”

£80 million for the Covid Economic Recovery Fund is made up of the remaining funding from the £375 million Omicron business support package and underspend from some of the funding allocated, where business demand has been less than initially forecast.

The First Minister added: “It is our aim to get back to normality as quickly as possible.

“Our updated Strategic Framework will support resilience in communities across Scotland by outlining robust plans to prepare for possible new variants or other future emergencies, should we need to act to protect public health.

“Of course, the best way to support business sustainably is to act responsibly and to sustainably manage the risks the virus presents as we begin to live the more normal life that we all crave.”

COSLA President Councillor Alison Evison said:

“COSLA welcomes today’s announcement of £80 million of flexible funding for Councils to use in ways that best support local businesses, communities and low income households.

“This additional funding will enable Councils to play an even greater role in supporting economic and social recovery in their areas, as we move out of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We know that businesses, communities and low income households have been hit hard over the last two years and Local Government has been at the forefront of supporting those most affected.

“The flexibility offered by this funding will enable Councils to provide local support where they know the need is greatest.”

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