Donegal County Council recognises that businesses across Donegal are facing incredibly challenging times. Ratepayers experiencing difficulties in paying their Commercial Rates are being encouraged to contact the Council directly.
Local authorities have agreed to engage with ratepayers with a view to allowing those businesses worst affected by the Covid-19 outbreak to defer Commercial Rates payments until the end of May 2020.
“Each ratepayer will be dealt with on a case-by-case basis” explains Head of Finance with Donegal County Council, Richard Gibson: “The impact for businesses is not uniform and, for this reason, we must consider each situation on a case-by-case basis. We recognise that some businesses, especially those in the hospitality and tourism sectors, leisure, childcare and many other small and medium sized retailers, are facing cash-flow and liquidity challenges.”
The Council is cognisant of the fact that, as the Covid-19 situation continues, the adverse impact on businesses will evolve and the categories of ratepayers experiencing difficulties may change.
Income from Commercial Rates makes up approximately 24% of Donegal County Council’s budget each year and is critical for the continuing operations of services such as Fire and Emergency Services, Flooding Emergency Responses, Housing, Roads and other key services.
The Council’s COVID-19 Crisis Management Team continues to meet daily and will continue to monitor the situation on a day-to-day basis considering the best advice from the medical experts, national bodies and government.
Garry Martin, Director of Economic Development with Donegal County Council, said “We are aware of the impact the measures introduced to help prevent the spread of Covid-19 are having on the business sector in Donegal and we are committed to supporting businesses during these challenging times and in helping them access government supports as and when required. I would urge businesses to keep in contact and engage with us in the coming weeks and months.”
The Council’s Local Enterprise Office is making free online and telephone mentoring available to any business seeking assistance in addressing emerging issues and in developing their cash flow projections and short action plans to address the identified issues. In addition, Business Continuity Vouchers of €2,500 to support business continuity preparedness, innovation and productivity are also being made available from the Local Enterprise Office.
For more information visit https://dbei.gov.ie/en/What-We-Do/Supports-for-SMEs/COVID-19-supports/, or www.localenterprise.ie/donegal, or email the Local Enterprise Office at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 074 91 60735.
Information on other government supports, including financial support for working capital and business continuity planning checklist, as well as supports from various business support organisations, is also available at www.donegalcoco.ie.