Perth and Kinross Council has this week doubled the amount of financial aid distributed to small businesses affected by coronavirus to almost £10 million.
The local authority revealed at the beginning of this week that more than £4.5m had been dished out to Perthshire enterprises which will see trading diminished due to the lockdown.
Financial support is being provided through the Business Support Grant scheme launched by the UK Government and distributed by councils across the UK.
By the end of this week, around £10m has been distributed to help local businesses which have been hit hardest by widespread closures.
So far, around 1,000 firms have received some level of support within Perth and Kinross, nearly half of those which have applied.
Council officers have been trawling through more than 2,300 applications and are continuing to distribute money, so have urged applicants who have not received their allocated funds yet not to panic.
The figures were revealed by council’s business branch Invest in Perth.
It said: “Perth and Kinross Council has now paid out just under £10 million in grant support to 845 businesses and will have increased again [on Friday] by around a further 100 payments.”
It went on: “A large number of applications are being held pending because of errors or discrepancies in the information provided. This takes time to resolve.
“We fully appreciate the serious financial impact that the lockdown is having on small businesses and would like to assure you that as a local authority it is our utmost priority to pay everyone who is eligible as quickly as possible.”
Council leader Murray Lyle says he hoped it will bring some comfort to businesses who had been worried about making it through the summer.
He said: “This is a massive amount of money going to lots of small businesses across all areas of Perth and Kinross.
“The vast majority of processed applications have been accepted and we are getting back in touch to consult with the few which have anomalies in the forms.
“I want to thank the council staff who have been working seven days a week for the last few weeks and over Easter to help get these processed.”