Responding to the announcement of fresh government support measures for small firms, Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) Development Manager for Hampshire, Dorset and Isle of Wight Nicky Kildunne said:
“These positive measures will help alleviate the intense pressures that small firms are currently under, and hopefully arrest a significant decline in confidence over this year.
“With the prospect of one million people sick or self-isolating by January, we encouraged the Chancellor to bring back the COVID statutory sick pay rebate – we’re pleased to see our recommendation taken forward today.
“This move will reduce stress for small employers up and down the country, helping those who are struggling most with depleted cash flow. It’s vital that small firms – once again up against a massively disrupted festive season – can reclaim the costs of supporting staff.
“The Government has also rightly taken forward other aspects of our ten-point plan, with £1bn worth of grant support for the hardest-hit sectors, alongside accelerated delivery of the business rates relief fund for supply chains launched months ago.
“The encouragement of HMRC to give as much breathing space as possible to small firms as we head towards tax return season will also come as a relief to many.
“We’ve always said that support needs to move in lockstep with restrictions, and this intervention will help give small businesses confidence that this is the approach Government will be taking.”