Stuart Anderson MP has welcomed a multi-million-pound investment package from the Government to help local people and businesses as the economic recovery from COVID-19 gets underway. The funding was announced in the Spring Budget, which was delivered by the Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak MP on Wednesday, the 3rd of March 2021. It forms part of the next phase in Government’s plan to tackle COVID-19, protect livelihoods, and level up opportunities for local communities.
In the run up to the Budget, Stuart tabled parliamentary questions and spoke with Ministers about the support that local people requested. He is pleased that these concerns were listened to and has welcomed many of the announcements. It includes millions for the Towns Fund to regenerate the local economy, with extra funding for the National Brownfield Institute to pioneer new technologies in the remediation of brownfield sites. Stuart also welcomed details of the £4.8 billion Levelling Up Fund, which has been designed to support projects that level up opportunities for local people by improving infrastructure and connectivity. Stuart has already committed to ensuring that this fund delivers for local people.
In addition, Stuart has praised the Government’s move to extend income support schemes that had been put in place as part of the nation’s response to the outbreak of COVID-19. It includes an extension to the Universal Credit uplift and to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, as well as two further grants as part of the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme, the eligibility for which has been extended.
Further support for the high street was welcomed by Stuart, who had been contacted by local businesses requesting his help as they prepare to reopen. A new £5 billion fund will see grants issued to businesses in the hospitality, accommodation, and leisure sectors, as well as personal care and gym businesses. There will also be a new recovery loan scheme and an extension to the business rates holiday. There will also be a new community ownership fund to help people takeover venues such as pubs at threat of closure.
For many months, Stuart has been working with representatives from the local arts, culture and sports sector and called upon the Chancellor to ensure that they are fully supported. Stuart is pleased that the Government is confirmed that it is making available an extra £700 million for local venues in this sector.
As a veteran, Stuart welcomed £10 million funding to support the mental health needs of service leavers – an issue that he has been championing as someone who suffered from poor mental health after being injured during his time in the Army. These announcements build on more than half a billion pounds that Stuart has so far helped to secure for the local area during his time in office as a local MP. Stuart is now working with leaders from across the region such as the Mayor of the West Midlands Andy Street to ensure that local people and businesses are aware of the support that is available to them. He is keeping his website updated with the latest details at https://www.stuartanderson.org.uk
Stuart Anderson MP said: “The measures that have been outlined by the Chancellor provide much-needed certainty for constituents as we look to recover from the outbreak of COVID-19. I know that these have been very challenging times for many local people and businesses, so I am really pleased that the Chancellor has not forgotten about us. This funding backs the Prime Minister’s roadmap by delivering the resources needed as our communities and local businesses prepare for reopening and beyond. I will be working to ensure that the assistance can be accessed by those who need the support.”
KEY ANNOUNCEMENTS FOR WOLVERHAMPTON SOUTH WEST:
- £25 million Towns Fund Deal
- £8.9 million for The West Midlands Combined Authority as part of the Intra-City Transport Settlement.
- Extending the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (furlough) until the end of September
- Two further grants of the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme – and bringing in 19/20 starters.
- Restart grants of up to £18,000 to get our retail, hospitality, leisure and personal care businesses going again
- Business rates holiday extended for 3 months, before tapering for another 9
- Extending the VAT cut to 5 per cent for a further six months, before tapering for another six
- Continuing our stamp duty cut for another three months, before tapering for another three
- Extending Universal Credit uplift and Working Tax Credits by six months
- More money for apprenticeships and traineeships
- New Recovery Loans to replace our existing loan schemes
- £700 million for arts, culture and sports
- A brand new 95 per cent mortgage guarantee for prospective homebuyers
- Launching £150 million Community Ownership Fund
- Opening bidding for the Levelling Up Fund (with capacity funding) and the UK Community Renewal Fund
- Help to Grow to boost the productivity of our small businesses
- Visa reforms to attract highly-skilled migrants to the UK
- Green initiatives: a new retail bond, offshore wind funding, and new carbon markets
- Future Fund Breakthrough to fund high growth companies, and ambitious reforms to IPO listings