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NCC opens Business Response Fund to support pandemic community response

Published: 14 May 2020

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Do you have an idea that can be turned into a way to help businesses that have lost income because of the pandemic?

Napier City Council has set up a $50,000 fund to help turn these ideas into reality. The fund extends a helping hand to organisations wanting to make a difference to the business community, says Napier Mayor Kirsten Wise. “This is yet another way that we as a Council can look to support our locals in a positive way, and bring benefits to a struggling business community.”

The aim is to support businesses that have lost income due to the reduction in the number of tourists coming to Napier, and the overall fall in spending caused by COVID-19.

The fund, which opens for applications today, 14 May, has been established by pooling together unallocated economic development promotion funding.

The fund could be used to cover costs of, for example, online marketing, website developments, activation, events, digital development and promotional materials.

It will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. Applications will be assessed and forwarded to a funding panel for a decision as they are received, to ensure a quick turnaround.

The panel comprises Mayor Wise, Councillor Sally Crown, who has the Prosperous City portfolio, and Dean Prebble, Economic Development Manager at Napier City Council, based on their experience during the pandemic response, and knowledge of the business sector.

Mr Prebble and the Mayor have developed the scheme together, following the successful launch of the Community Rapid Response scheme. “We are aware of a number of organisations with great ideas to help our business community get back on their feet and we hope that a small amount of money can make a huge difference to individual businesses when applied to collective marketing and support activity,” says Mr Prebble.

The Business Response Scheme for 2020/21 was due to open for applications last month. It has been put on hold while priorities are reassessed, to align with Napier’s Recovery Plan.

Applications for the Business Response Fund will be taken up until 15 June or until the fund has been allocated, whichever comes first. To find out more, or for assistance with an application, telephone 833 9778, or email

To apply, go to: #BRfund.

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