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Applications open for Restart Grant Plus scheme!

Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment Leo Varadkar has said that he expects tens of thousands of small businesses to apply for a new round of business restart grants which are being opened for applications from today.

The Restart Grant Plus Scheme was part of the Government's July Stimulus package, a €7.4bn package of measures.

Speaking on RTE's Morning Ireland, Minister Vardakar said the scheme, which gives grants of between €4,000 and €25,000 to businesses to help them to re-open, replaces and supersedes the existing restart grant schemes.

Previous grant amounts were between €2,000 and €10,000 respectively.

Mr Varadkar said that €300 million is being invested in the scheme, which is designed to help businesses to reopen and to stay open and is open to any business that operates from a rateable premises as well for B&B's, charity shops and sports clubs.

The scheme is open to those with less than 250 employees that have reopened or planned to reopen and have seen a 25% reduction in turnover between April and June.

This will allow pubs and events industries which remain closed to apply.

The grants can be used to re-hire staff, adapt businesses or build up business and will be administered through local authorities.

Minister Varadkar said that 35,000 businesses with fewer than 50 employees are eligible to apply for this grant even if they have already received the initial restart grant.

Those who did not apply in time for the first round can apply for this grant, but not the earlier grant, although he said that may be reviewed.

He said the maximum grant of €25,000 available to businesses including hotels, comes on top of other benefits including the wage subsidy scheme, commercial rate breaks and corporation tax rebate as well as the spend and save initiative which begins in October.

Mr Varadkar said the process should be as straight forward as possible for applicants.

"It is taxpayers' money so there does have to be checks and controls, but I'm assured that as of today, all local authorities will be open for applications, and it does involve a certain amount of form filling, but we'll try and make it as unbureaucratic as possible."

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