Mr Patsy McGlone (Mid Ulster): To ask the Minister of Finance how many applications have been received to the Localised Restrictions Support Scheme; and how many have been paid to date.
Minister of Finance: The Localised Restrictions Support Scheme (LRSS) provides support for business that have been directly affected by the Health Protection restrictions. It opened to businesses in Derry City and Strabane District Council Area on Wednesday 14th October and to other council areas on Monday 19th October. It has changed four times since it was first set up, extending its geographic range to all council areas and increased the amount of payments issued and the types of businesses that are eligible. This has added to the complexity of administering the scheme.
As of 22nd December, there have been 17,213 applications received. 9,579 businesses have received payments totalling £59m. 5,735 have been rejected.
Approximately a third of applications still to be processed include duplicate and / or incomplete applications. Land and Property Services is continuing to progress applications as quickly as possible.