Rachael Hamilton MSP has commended the work of Scottish Borders Council on processing Covid-19 grants efficiently.
However she warned that the Scottish Government’s lack of funding for certain sectors and confusion over criteria has left many businesses without basic support.
A total of 3,284 applications to SBC were lodged, and so far 2,582 have been awarded, totalling around £28 million in Covid-19 business support.
With the appeals deadline looming, Mrs Hamilton took the opportunity to thank the hard work of staff processing payments at SBC, but demanded the Scottish Government get to grips with supporting sectors which have fallen through the gaps.
It comes as many tourism and hospitality businesses eagerly await to reopen on the 15th July.
However not all businesses have been successful in obtaining grant support, and the Borders MSP is frustrated by the lack of consideration from the Finance Secretary Kate Forbes MSP as to the deep economic damage which is being caused.
Rachael Hamilton MSP said:
“Businesses the length and breadth of the Borders have been frustrated at the ‘patchy’ business support on offer from the Scottish Government.
“From multiple properties to confusing criteria, it has been a minefield for businesses to obtain grant funding, which they absolutely deserve at this difficult time.
“The staff at SBC have been working hard to process payments, but SNP Ministers in Edinburgh have a long way to go in still helping those worst affected by the economic downturn.
“The SNP’s treatment of business throughout the pandemic has been poor, and many businesses have contacted me extremely concerned for their future.
“As we face the difficult economic times ahead, the SNP Government in Edinburgh must work harder to help those who have not received funding”.