Neath Inspired Limited Renewal Ballot Result

Neath Inspired Renewal Ballot Up-date

We are very disappointed to report that we were unsuccessful in our Renewal Ballot, although achieving a majority by number of voters we failed on the second criteria, the aggregate value of the votes cast. Several key stakeholders, national stores, banks and other retailers did not vote suggesting that Covid-19 restrictions and furloughed workers had implications on the final outcome.

Over the last five years we have successfully supported and delivered important large scale seasonal events like the, the Music Festival, the Real Ale & Cider Festival the Neath Food and drink Festival and other events like the Comedy Festival, the Wales International Film Festival and Easter and Halloween events that have all brought increased footfall into the town centre.

Positive partnerships with other organisations have delivered hanging baskets, Christmas lights, anti-social behaviour initiatives, free parking and a comprehensive advertising and marketing partnership with the Wave and Swansea Sound. These together with other projects, delivered support for the town centre that the Local Authority no longer fulfils.

We are sure that our aim to help Neath become a first-class destination for visitors, our loyal local shoppers and independent businesses has benefitted Neath and are confident that our town will bounce back into vibrancy when restrictions are lifted.

The Board of Neath Inspired Limited

Deputy Minister for Housing and Local Government, Hannah Blythyn MS said:Transforming towns across Wales and making them fit for the 21st century is a priority for the Welsh Government. BIDs play can play a key part in regenerating areas by providing businesses with a collective single voice, supporting economic growth and strengthening communities.  I am extremely disappointed that the BID has not been supported for a further term in Neath, as effective BIDS have a proven track record of driving local change and managing high streets and town centres.”

Ballot Result

I the undersigned, being the Ballot Holder for the above Election, hereby give notice that the NUMBER OF VOTES cast were as follows:-
Total number of votes cast in the ballot (excluding any votes given on ballot papers and rejected) 65
The aggregate rateable value of each hereditament in respect of which a person voted in the ballot (excluding rejected votes) £2,405,400
The total number of votes cast in favour of the question asked in the ballot 34
The aggregate rateable value of each hereditament in respect of which a person voting in the ballot has voted in favour of the question asked £728,850
Percentage of ratepayers who returned the ballot paper voting in favour of the proposal 52%
Percentage of the aggregate rateable value of each hereditament in respect of which a person voting in the ballot has voted in favour of the proposal 30%
Percentage of eligible ratepayers voting 25%
Number of ballot papers rejected 3
I HEREBY CERTIFY THAT:
The majority of votes cast were IN FAVOUR of the proposal
The aggregated rateable value of the votes cast in favour of the proposal to renew the BID were LOWER than that against the proposal
And that the proposal for a Business Improvement District for Neath Town Centre is UNSUCCESFUL
Karen Jones
Ballot Holder
5 February 2021

Neath Inspired Going for a Renewal Ballot in 2021

Neath Inspired Limited is going for a Renewal Ballot in 2021 and we need your support, there has never been a more important time for a proactive Neath Business Improvement District.

Our first 5 year term is up and we are asking our BID businesses to vote “YES” in the Renewal Ballot. 

Ballot papers will be sent out on Thursday 7th January 2021 and will have to be returned by post by 5.00pm Thursday 4th of February.

A YES vote in our renewal ballot will allow us, over the next 5 years, to invest £425,000 in the events and projects that you have suggested to us following consultation and the results of our Business Perception Questionnaire.

You have told us that anti-social behaviour is a serious issue for your business. If we are successful in the Renewal Ballot, we will continue our close relationship with our local police and the Community Safety Partnership to minimise antisocial behaviour.

Parking is another area that you have asked us to improve, we will engage with the Council to investigate parking initiatives that will encourage shoppers and visitors to come to Neath.

You have told us that you would also like to see more events, smaller and pop up events, and wider exposure via multimedia marketing channels like Facebook and Instagram. We will arrange a more comprehensive diary of events that will include new events that you have suggested and market them extensively using Facebook and other multi marketing channels. We will aim to attract local and other visitors and give them a “Warm Welsh Welcome” and a really positive town centre experience.

As a member of Neath BID, you are incredibly valued and we reaffirm that our main priority will always be promoting the town centre and supporting your local business.

We are confident that if we work together with our partners, Neath Town Council, NPT County Borough Council and South Wales Polices and others, Neath will bounce back from the present crisis and with your support ,we will fulfil the dream of Neath becoming the destination town in South Wales. We, very much, hope that you will support us and vote YES for a renewed Business Improvement District for Neath town centre.

Your Questions Answered:

What is a Business Improvement District (BID)?

A BID is a business-led and funded partnership, where businesses within a defined area invest money together, to make the
improvements they identify to enhance their trading environment. The money generated is targeted only at the Neath Inspired programme.

How will the Neath Inspired BID be funded?

The Neath Inspired BID will be funded by a 1.5% levy on the total rateable value (RV) of all hereditaments, or business units, within the defined BID boundary with an RV of £6,000 or more. Businesses with a total RV below this threshold will be exempt but can make a voluntary contribution. The levy will be based on the RV as of the 23rd December (the date of the notification of ballot).

Am I eligible to vote in the BID ballot?

If your business is within the defined BID boundaries and has a rateable value above £6,000 you will be eligible to vote and thus pay the BID
levy, if the ballot returns a ‘YES’ vote.

How do I find out how much I am liable to pay?

You can calculate you levy by multiplying your RV by 1.5%. Contact Andrew Shufflebotham at Neath Inspired to talk through the business plan and discuss how much you will contribute. Andrew can be contacted in on 0788 123 7887 or andrew@neathinspired.co.uk

How does the ballot work?

The BID can only be set up after a successful ballot of businesses in Neath town centre. On Thursday 7th January 2021 you will
be sent a ballot paper by post asking whether you support the formation of the BID. To be successful, the ballot must pass on two
majorities: 1. By the number of businesses voting (over 50% of votes cast must vote YES) 2. By the total RV (over 50% of the total RV of all
votes cast must vote YES).

Who will pay the BID Levy?

If both these conditions are met the BID will be established and the BID levy will become mandatory for all eligible businesses within the
BID area – this includes those owned by the Borough Council and other public bodies. The BID will run for five years (2021-2026), when
a renewal ballot will be held and businesses take another vote to decide whether the BID continues or not.

How is the levy collected?

The BID levy will be collected on an annual basis by the Borough Council who will collect it on our behalf. This will be billed as a separate
amount to your normal Business Rates bill. The levy will be fixed for five years based on the RV as of the date of the notification of ballot,
Wednesday 23rd December. Neath Inspired will be clear and transparent about how it is spending the money. There will be regularly updated information about income and expenditure available to all BID businesses.

Who will run Neath Inspired Limited?

If a YES vote is achieved the Neath BID will be run by Neath Inspired Limited an independent, not-for-profit company that was established in 2016. This will continue to be led by a board of directors who are representative of businesses in Neath and are all volunteer members. There will be an open invitation for businesses to get involved.

How will the Neath Inspired BID be governed?

If a YES vote is achieved the Neath BID will be run by Neath Inspired Limited an independent, not-for-profit company that was established in 2016. This will continue to be led by a board of directors who are representative of businesses in Neath and are all volunteer members. There will be an open invitation for businesses to get involved.

Neath Inspired will be a transparent body with a number of checks and balances, ensuring that the company is open to scrutiny from all its levy payers and the community in which it operates, in order to maintain its credibility and reputation.

For the last 5 years the Neath Inspired directors, a committed core of Neath business representatives have led this process to date. Recently they have evaluated past performance, projects and budgets, and consulted with businesses on the key proposals to take forward into a new BID. In this document they have outlined how your money will be allocated to improve all
activities and investments undertaken.

If the renewal ballot is successful additional board members will be sought and will be drawn from businesses that pay the BID levy or are voluntary members who pay a voluntary donation.

Can I become a Member of the Company?

Businesses that pay the BID levy may appoint a person who can become a member of the company and be able to vote in the AGM. The directors of this board must be representative of the town centre and include a cross section of stakeholders from all sectors and sizes. A part-time BID manager or project specific support will deliver the programme, overseen by the board.

 

FREE CHRISTMAS PARKING IN NEATH

FREE CHRISTMAS PARKING IN NEATH

You can park in Neath for FREE from Saturday 12th December 2020 until and including 1st January 2021 in the pay and display town centre car parks.

What a fantastic reason to support your local shops, stay local, shop local.

Not only do all our independently owned shops need your support all the big nationals need you too!

Please make sure that if you can get it in Neath – GET IT IN NEATH

Neath Inspired are grateful to Neath Port Talbot Council for providing the FREE CAR PARKING once again this year.

 

 

#Neath #Shoplocal #loveneath #neathtowncouncil #neathinspired  #NeathConstituencyVoiceforEveryone

 

Construction Begins on Neath Town Centre Redevelopment

Building work has begun on the multi-million pound Neath Town Centre redevelopment scheme.

The project will deliver a major leisure, wellbeing, shopping and learning zone for Neath’s town centre featuring a swimming pool, gym, health suite, retail floorspace and a modern library.

The scheme, being built by construction firm Kier, is designed to have a major beneficial impact on the town centre, increasing sustainability, vitality and footfall.

It will also drive the recovery of the town centre post COVID-19, bringing new uses into the centre of Neath to increase vibrancy and visitor numbers helping the delivery of a commercially viable redevelopment at a time of uncertainty for Britain’s traditional town centres.

The Leader of Neath Port Talbot Council, Cllr Rob Jones, said: “This redevelopment will bring new activities and investment to the town centre, strengthening its commercial core and supporting more people to lead a healthy lifestyle while improving wellbeing facilities for the town and surrounding areas.

“The swimming pool, health suite, gym and library will attract many thousands of additional people into the heart of the town centre, including many families, every week.

“We look forward to welcoming them.”

The following floorspace will be created by the redevelopment:

  • Commercial / retail units (6) – 1,354 square metres.
    • Leisure Centre – swimming pool, gym, health suite – 5,631 square metres.
    • Library – 600 square metres.
    • High quality public space.

Construction is due for completion by Kier at the end of April 2022.

The scheme is being part funded by The Welsh Government’s Transforming Towns fund.

Chairman of Neath Inspired BID, Robert Williams said “The starting of work on the new development has been enthusiastically received by businesses in Neath. They consider that locating a state-of-the-art leisure centre as the main anchor for the development is both an innovative and commercial solution to regenerating Neath town centre. It will bring increased footfall and catalyse new investment by way of new shops that will add to the diverse retail mix that already exists in town.”

The Deputy Minister for Housing and Local Government, Hannah Blythyn said of the Neath Town Centre project: “The regeneration of Neath Town Centre is a prime of example of how we are supporting and securing the future of Welsh towns through our Transforming Towns programme.

“This project will not only boost sustainability, footfall and economic growth but will have a beneficial impact on the wellbeing of the local community. I look forward to seeing the redevelopment when it is complete.”

ERF Restrictions Business Fund

 

ERF Restrictions Business Fund

Applications will be dealt with on a first come first served basis. This may lead to applications not being appraised after they have been submitted if the fund is fully committed.

On the 30 November the First Minister announced a £340m package of support directed primarily at the hospitality, tourism and related supply chain sectors.

The purpose of the fund is to support businesses into the new year with cash flow support to help them survive the economic consequences of the restrictions put in place.

Hospitality businesses who received the Lockdown Business Grant in October via their Local Authority will begin receiving payments via the ERF Restriction Fund into their back account during December. These businesses will not be required to re-register their details.

For all other eligible businesses to receive any of the ERF Restrictions Fund, businesses will need to register their details, as well as making a short on-line application to their respective local authority for the discretionary elements. These payments will start to reach businesses in January.
The fund consists of two separate grants:

ERF Restrictions Business Fund:

The ERF Restrictions Business Fund will provide the following financial assistance:

  • Businesses in the hospitality sectors that are in receipt of Small Business rate relief (SBRR) and have a rateable value of £12,000 or less will be eligible for a £3,000 payment. Tourism, leisure, retail and supply chain business qualifying for SBRR will also be eligible for this support if they have greater than 40% reduction in turnover during the restriction period.
  • Hospitality businesses with a rateable value of between £12,001 and £51,000 being eligible for a £5,000 payment if they are forced to close. Tourism, leisure, retail and supply chain business in the same rateable value bracket will also be eligible for this support if they have greater than 40% reduction in turnover during the restriction period.
  • Hospitality businesses with a rateable value between £51,001 and £150,000 being eligible for a £5,000 payment if impacted by the restrictions. Tourism and leisure businesses in the same rateable value bracket will also be eligible for this support if they have greater than 40% reduction in turnover during the restriction period.

How to access the ERF Restrictions Fund:

Businesses must be on the non-domestic rates (NDR) rating list for their local authority on 1 September.

Hospitality businesses who received the Lockdown Business Grant in October via their Local Authority will begin receiving payments via the ERF Restriction Fund into their bank account during December. These businesses will not be required to re-register their details.

For all other eligible businesses to receive any of the ERF Restrictions Fund, businesses will need to register their details, as well as making a short on-line application to their respective local authority for the discretionary elements. These payments will start to reach businesses in January.

Business will be able to access the registration and application process to access the funding through the Business Wales and Local Authority websites. Further details on the process will be published shortly.

ERF Restrictions Discretionary Grant

 

  • Local authorities will continue delivering the Lockdown Discretionary Grant to businesses that are materially impacted.  As was the case for the Firebreak, this will continue to be targeted at businesses that are not on the non-domestic rates (NDR) system and therefore not eligible for the NDR linked grants. The grant level for this strand would be set at eligible costs of up to £2,000 per business.
  • This will provide support to sub VAT sole traders without a property who are materially impacted (>40% reduced turnover) as a result of the restrictions, e.g. cleaners providing services to the hospitality industry.
  • Application for the grant can be accessed by visiting the relevant local authority website, or via the Business Wales website.

You are not eligible for this grant if:

  • You are eligible for, or have received a Non-Domestic Rate Grant from your Local Authority
  • If you have 50 or more employees
  • If the business generated less than 50% of your income, the business must be your main source of income.

Applications will be dealt with on a first come first served basis. This may lead to applications not being appraised after they have been submitted if the fund is fully committed.

 

TIME IS RUNNING OUT !

Lockdown Business Grant 

This grant will close at 5pm on the 20th November!

 

Neath Inspired says

“If you haven’t already accessed this grant, hurry, apply today it only takes 5 minutes”

This fund is to provide financial assistance to businesses that are facing operational and financial challenges caused by the national lockdown announced for Wales as a result of COVID-19.

The purpose of the fund is to support businesses with cash flow support to help them survive the economic consequences of the restrictions put in place.

The Lockdown Non-Domestic Rate (Business Rates) Grant

This grant is available to businesses liable for business rates.

A grant of £5,000 is being made available for retail, leisure and hospitality businesses that have been forced to close and occupy properties with a rateable value of between £12,001 and £51,000.

A grant of £1,000 is being made available to all businesses eligible for small business rates relief (SBRR) in Wales with a rateable value of up to £12,000

Businesses eligible for small business rates relief that have been subject to local restrictions for 3 weeks or more and have been materially impacted [have experienced a 50% reduction in turnover] up to the 23rd October will be eligible for a further grant of £1,000

Businesses eligible for small business rates relief that have been forced to close as a result of the national firebreak lockdown will also be eligible for a further top up grant of £2,000 from their local authority.

You will need to be a Business Rates payer on 1 September 2020 and will need to complete a simple registration form to receive this grant. It only takes 5 minutes. For further information on this grant please read the Lockdown Non-Domestic Rate Grant Guidance Document. https://www.npt.gov.uk/media/14661/enhanced-lockdown-discretionary-grant-application-form-eng-911.docx

This information was last updated at 16 November 2020, 12:43

 

 

Lockdown Business Grants Available from the Welsh Government

Calling Neath Businesses

Make sure you understand which “Lockdown Grants” are available to you from the Welsh Government.

Don’t miss out!

Lockdown Business Fund

This is a fund to provide financial assistance to businesses that are facing operational and financial challenges caused by the national lockdown announced for Wales as a result of COVID-19.

The purpose of the fund is to support businesses with cash flow support to help them survive the economic consequences of the restrictions put in place.

To receive the grants outlined below you will need to register and or make an application for the discretionary elements. Registration and applications will be open on the *28th October 2020 via links to Neath Port Talbot web site. (* The NPTC links will be made available over two working days so please do not worry if the site is not immediately visible on the 28th).

Applications will close at 5pm on the 20th November 2020 or when the fund is fully committed. The fund will be administered by your Local Authority.

The fund consists of two separate grants:


Lockdown Non Domestic Rate Grant

Grant 1
A grant of £5,000 is being made available for retail, leisure and hospitality businesses that have been forced to close (as defined by the regulations) and occupy properties with a rateable value of between £12,001 and £51,000.

In line with the regulations, the primary operation of the business at the qualifying hereditament must be closed during the firebreak period to be eligible for this element of support. However, if a food delivery or takeaway service is in operation (and is not the normal primary income source for the business) and aligns fully to the reasonable measures required you may apply for the £5k grant.

Grant 2 
A grant of £1,000 is being made available to all businesses eligible for small business rates relief (SBRR) in Wales with a rateable value of up to £12,000 (for further details and exemptions see guidance document).

  •  Businesses eligible for small business rates relief that have been subject to local restrictions for 3 weeks or more and have been materially impacted (for example – 50% reduction in turnover) up to the 23rd October will be eligible for a further grant of £1,000
  • A discretionary enhanced £2,000 top-up grant [see below] will be made available on an application basis for those businesses with a rateable value of £12,000 or less who are forced to close by the firebreak lockdown (as defined by the regulations).

You are not eligible for this grant if:
•    You are eligible for, or have received, the Lockdown Discretionary Grant from your Local Authority

You will need to be on the NDR rating list for your local authority on 1 September 2020 and will need to complete a simple registration form to receive this grant.

For further information on this grant read:

Enhanced Lockdown Non Domestic Rate Grant – Guidance (ENG)_0.docx

[.DOCX, 36.01 KB]

 

Lockdown Discretionary Grant

Grant amount 1 – a discretionary grant of £1,500 is available to assist businesses that have:
•    Been forced to close as a result of the national firebreak lockdown
•    OR are able to demonstrate that the national firebreak lockdown will result in at least a 80% reduction in their turnover for that period

Grant amount 2 – a discretionary grant of £2,000 is available to assist businesses that have:
•    Been forced to close as a result of the national firebreak lockdown
•    OR are able to demonstrate that the national firebreak lockdown will result in at least a 80% reduction in their turnover for that period

  •  ANDhave been subject to local restrictions for 3 weeks or more up to the 23rd October and experienced at least a 50% reduction in their turnover for that period.

You cannot apply for Grant 1 and Grant 2.
You are not eligible for this grant if:
•    You are eligible for, or have received, the Lockdown Non-Domestic Rate Grant from your Local Authority

  • If you have 50 or more employees
  • If the business generated less than 50% of your income, the business must be your main source of income.

For further information on this grant please read the

Enhanced Lockdown Discretionary Grant – Guidance (ENG)_0.docx

[.DOCX, 32.71 KB]

£140 million to Support Welsh Businesses

The Welsh Government is making an additional £140 million available to businesses to help them deal with the economic challenges of coronavirus (COVID-19) and the UK’s impending exit from the EU, Economy Minister Ken Skates has announced.

The funding from the third phase of the Welsh Government’s Economic Resilience Fund (ERF) will see wider support being provided to secure jobs and help businesses develop, as well as additional help for firms affected by local lockdowns.

To date, the ERF has delivered almost £300 million of support to more than 13,000 companies in Wales. This has helped to protect in excess of 100,000 jobs which might otherwise have been lost.

This new phase of the ERF will see £80 million being made available to support businesses with projects that can help them transition to the economy of tomorrow. It will require co-investment from companies and a clear plan about how they will adjust to the post-covid economy.

Of this, £20 million will be ring fenced to support tourism and hospitality businesses who are facing particular challenges as they enter the winter months.

Meanwhile an additional £60 million will be allocated to support businesses impacted by local lockdown restrictions.

The rest of the funding will be used flexibly to provide additional support, for example to increase lending to Welsh businesses through Development Bank of Wales initiatives and to help companies deal with the impacts of the UK leaving the European Union.

The ERF has been designed to complement and build on the support offered by the UK Government.

Economy Minister Ken Skates said:

Our Economic Resilience Fund has been absolutely crucial in supporting businesses throughout Wales in dealing with the economic challenges of the coronavirus and helping protect the livelihoods of more than 100,000 people.

The next phase of the fund, worth £140 million, builds on that success, helping us to secure jobs and enabling businesses to continue to develop and grow in these challenging times. There is also a specific part of the fund earmarked to support businesses affected by local lockdowns.

This additional help has been designed to complement and build on the support announced by the Chancellor last week, again demonstrating the Welsh Government’s proactive approach to go above and beyond in providing extra financial assistance that we know our businesses and workers need.

The £80 million worth of business development grants will be open to micro businesses, SMEs and large businesses.

  • Micro businesses (employing between 1 and 9 people) will be able to apply for up to £10,000 on the condition they match this with their own investment of at least 10%.
  • SMEs (employing between 10 and 249 people) will be able to apply for up to £150,000 on the condition they match this with their own investment of at least 10% for small business (1 to 49 staff) and 20% for medium sized (50 to 249) business.
  • Large businesses (employing 250+ people) will be able to apply for up to £200,000 on the condition they match this with their own investment of at least 50%.

Companies that received grant funding through phases one and two of the ERF, or Non-Domestic Rate linked support, could also be eligible for phase three of the ERF.

The Minister added:

We are going through a time like no other. Coronavirus and the increasing risk of the UK reaching the end of the European Union transition period without a deal have placed incredible challenges on our businesses.

As a Welsh Government, we continue to do all we can to back our businesses, our workers and our communities.

Finance Minister Rebecca Evans said:

The package of support we have provided for Welsh businesses has been, and will continue to be, absolutely critical as we move into the next phase of addressing this crisis.

Today’s announcement provides reassurances to businesses at a time they need it most.

The Eligibility Checker for companies to find out if they can access funding from the third phase of the ERF will be live during week commencing 5 October.

 

 

 

Kick Start Packs – A real Success

Neath BID Businesses – we’ve been busy  ensuring we supported you to get back to work!

In anticipation of  businesses reopening, we put together 125 “Kick Start” packs that included essential re-start items items.

Thanks to all those who made it happen: Steve and Nathan at the Edge Menswear shop in Wind Street, Donna and Matthew Anderson at Ministry Graphics and Hannah at Magnolia Health and Wellbeing who brought it all together.

The packs helped 125 businesses to re-start as seamlessly as possible and to adapt to our new normal.

 

Furlough: Take a look at the detailed guide for employers below

 

Claim for your employees’ wages through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS)

General information about the scheme

  • To be eligible for CJRS an employer must agree with the employee that they are a ‘furloughed worker’.
  • Employees must be notified that they have been furloughed.
  • Employees must be furloughed for a minimum of three weeks.
  • The employee cannot do any work for the employer that has furloughed them.
  • You can claim 80% of wages up to a maximum of £2,500 per month per furloughed employee.
  • A separate claim is needed for each PAYE scheme.
  • You can only claim for furloughed employees that were on your PAYE payroll on or before 19 March 2020.
  • An RTI submission notifying payment in respect of that employee to HMRC must have been
  • made on or before 19 March 2020.
  • You must have a UK bank account.

A detailed step by step guide for employers:

Control & Click Below

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/881800/Coronavirus_Job_Retention_Scheme_step_by_step_guide_for_employers.pdf

HMRC have requested your support to keep their lines open for those who need help the most.

Do not call them unless you have an issue that cannot be resolved using their guidance or webchat facility.

If you are an employee speak to your employer if you have any questions. HMRC are not able

to provide information on individual claims.