UK Shared Prosperity Funding

Pembrokeshire Carbon Reduction Grant

1. Introduction

2. The Offer

3. Eligibility

4. What is the Grant for?

5. Outputs

6. Application and Assessment 

7. Procurement Rules

8. Welsh Language

9. Subsidy Control

10. Post Completion - Terms and Conditions

11. Clawback of Funds

12. Data Protection

13. How to Apply

 

The information shown herein is for guidance only, and the Legal Terms and Conditions of the grant are set out in the Offer Letter of the approved applications. Guidance is still in draft and subject to change.

1. Introduction

The Carbon Reduction Fund is a business grant scheme, which will provide capital support to businesses towards the purchase of renewable energy systems for their business premises.

The aim of the fund is to support local businesses to be sustainable during these challenging times, to provide assistance for them to grow and prosper whilst helping them on their net zero carbon journey.

2. The Offer

  • Grants available between £1,000 (minimum) and £25,000 (maximum) towards the cost of the renewable energy system
  • Each grant award will be based on no more than 50% of eligible costs

3. Eligibility

The Pembrokeshire Business Carbon Reduction Fund is available only to new or existing businesses within the eligible sectors that are located within Pembrokeshire.

Support is aimed primarily at existing businesses, including social enterprises, operating in or servicing the following growth and foundation sectors:

  • Advanced Materials and Manufacturing

  • Construction

  • Creative Industries

  • Energy and Environment

  • Finance and Professional Services

  • Information Technology and Telecoms

  • Life Sciences

  • Food & Drink

  • Tourism

  • Retail

  • Care

The following sectors however are ineligible for support: - primary agriculture production, forestry, fishing, and statutory services, e.g., education and primary healthcare.

Applications will be considered on a case-by-case basis subject to their potential contribution and value to the local economy and commitment to decarbonisation.
You must either:

  • Own the freehold, or

  • Hold a lease with a seven-year minimum period remaining after the final grant payment date. You will need to secure your landlord's written consent for the proposed works

The business premises must be registered on Pembrokeshire County Council’s Non Domestic Rates register, in order to apply.
You cannot apply for funding to support work that you have already started. We encourage you to contact us at an early stage to discuss any proposals.

All expenditure associated to the grant must be completed and claimed by 30th November 2024. Monitoring of the business and funding scheme outputs will take place and evidence will be required by this time. Failure to achieve the committed outputs could result in the claw back of grant funds.

Upon giving reasonable notice, Pembrokeshire County Council reserves the right to monitor and maintain evidence at 1, 3 and 5 years from the receipt of a grant application. Renewable energy generation meter readings are to be taken on an annual basis by the applicant and provided as part of this monitoring process.

4. What you can use the grant for?

The grant will apply to capital expenditure within an approved project and can include:

Power Systems

  • Small scale, single wind turbine

  • Solar photovoltaic panels (roof mounted/ ground mounted)

  • Solar photovoltaic battery*

  • Grid linked battery storage system (where the tariff is with a renewable energy supplier)*

  • Hydro-electric

Heating Systems

  • Air Source Heat Pump (Air to water and air to air)

  • Ground Source Heat Pump (vertical, horizontal, diagonal & radial)

  • Solar thermal panels (roof mounted/ ground mounted)

  • Combined Heat & Power (CHP) Systems                                                   

Where renewable fuels (e.g., Biomass) are used as the fuel source

  • Installers should be MCS (Microgeneration Certification Scheme) accredited.

  • Any equipment under 45 kW must have MCS certification

  • For roof mounted systems, installers should be self-certified to perform structural appraisals and calculations for the roof structure. If they are not self certified to do this, then a building regulations certificate will be required.

*Due to the fact that there is a shortage of MCS certified battery installers, batteries must be installed by a contractor registered under a relevant Competent Persons Scheme (eg. NICEIC)

Mixed use premises

Where the business premises is part of a mixed use (i.e., business, and domestic) with one energy supply providing both, the premises must be registered with Non-Domestic Rates in order to be eligible and the grant will be worked out on a pro-rata basis (based on the proportion of usage taken up by the business)

5. Outputs

As part of the application, applicants must give an estimation of tonnes of carbon equivalent (tCO2e) saved over 3 years from installation of the system (based on pre-installation usage as compared to usage of the new system) as an output of the grant.

Your carbon savings will be calculated based on the figures you provide – this will be based on the following Greenhouse Gas Reporting Conversion factors (opens in a new tab)

6. Application Process and Assessment

All completed applications will be considered on first come first served basis until the total fund is fully allocated. 

Each application will be assessed against the outputs specified.

Each applicant must complete and return the following:

  • Expression of Interest form. Successful EOIs will be issued with a link to the application form.

  • Completed Application Form

  • Quotations in line with third party procurement rules

  • At least 2 full years of historical accounts and recent management accounts, if available. If the business has not been trading for 2 years, management accounts and or income & expenditure summary must be provided from the trading start date up to application date

  • Evidence of match funding

  • Proof of the freehold or leasehold ownership of the property

  • Any relevant statutory consents (eg. planning, building regulations) Please note, if these are not required, then written confirmation of this is needed from the relevant Authority

It should be noted that the Pembrokeshire Business Carbon Reduction Fund is a discretionary fund and is subject to approval by Pembrokeshire County Council. Each application will be assessed by a panel made up of officers from the Authority prior to final approval by the Head of Regeneration. 

7. Procurement Rules

Up to £4,999.00 (value excl.VAT)

  • A minimum of 3 quotes must be received and retained.

  • Best value for money must be obtained and reasonable care taken to obtain good, services or works of appropriate quality at a competitive price.

  • Records of decision making must be retained for audit and claim purposes.

Requirement: All

£5,000.00 - £24,999.00 (value excl.VAT)

  • A minimum of 3 written Quotations must be sought from competitive sources. The quotes must be based on the same specification and evaluated on a like for like basis.

  • A documented record of the quotes sought, the evaluation process and the decision to award must be recorded.

Requirement: All

Tender Procurement Process for Contracts or Items valued in excess of £25,000

 For use with SPF Anchor Grant Schemes within Pembrokeshire <£100K Grant

This guidance in intended only for contracts or single items valued above £25,000 where a % of the total value is to be reimbursed by SPF Grant via Pembrokeshire County Council.

The following requirements must be followed for the purchase of  goods or services, valued between £25,000 - £4,104,393, exclusive of VAT, in order to demonstrate full and open competition

You must demonstrate you have used open and fair practices by using a competitive tendering exercise for all works, goods and services that are included in the project for which you intend to claim grant support within the cost range above.

Initially three competitive quotes will be required prior to grant approval to show indicative costs of the scheme.

If the value of a single contract or item is greater than £25,000 an open tender process must take place to ensure a fair and open competition. This must take place after the award has been approved but before the commissioning of the works.

Your intention to procure a contract or items greater that £25,000 must be advertised in regional or specialist press stating a deadline for tender submissions and giving an opportunity for companies to tender. The minimum deadline should be 14 days from the date of publication, however this could be longer if the items are specialist or complex, or you consider a longer notice period appropriate (The costs of tender process can be included in your grant award if the maximum thresholds for that particular grant scheme are not reached).

The Invitation to Tender (ITT) documents must be issued to all companies that respond to the contract notice.

The ITT must be issued within 5 days of receipt of a request for the documentation and issued electronically in the case of a short 14 day notice period.

Once the contract has been advertised, you can also approach Suppliers directly but evidence must be provided that demonstrates which suppliers were approached and asked to tender; this must include the date they were contacted and who in the company the enquiry was sent to.

The Tender documents must contain all the necessary information for the supplier to be identified including address, contact details and Company Registration Number (VAT Number if applicable). The cost of an item procured from the supplier cannot be broken down into smaller amounts to avoid using the correct competitive tendering requirement. An agreed contract or a submitted quotation/tender cannot be split and individual items taken out of the contract or out of the quotation to be provided separately. This becomes a new purchase and the competitive tendering requirements must be applied again.

Conflict of Interest - Any perceived or actual conflicts of interest between you and the suppliers that are asked to provide quotes/tender - for example getting quotes from related companies, must be explained in the competitive tendering supporting documentation. Where conflicts potentially exist mitigating action must be taken and documented.

You must put in place a process which assesses the merits of the tenders on an impartial basis: (business case, with a genuine pre-estimate of cost and need). The contract description must be non-discriminatory; you cannot refer to a particular brand, qualification, certification, specific origin or trademark. You must make it clear that equivalents will be equally valid. You must ensure there is no direct or indirect discrimination of bidders. All information must be provided up front, including estimated value where possible, in the instructions to bidders / specification / advert / contract notice. You must make available the same information about the contract opportunity to all interested parties.

The selection process to select the winning tender received must be considered fairly and the reason(s) why a particular supplier was chosen must be recorded in writing. We would expect you to select the cheapest tender as your award may be based on the cheapest of the three quotes given at the approval stage. If, in exceptional circumstances, you do not use the cheapest competitive tender you must provide a written explanation setting out the rationale and reasons why the selected supplier has been chosen. Depending on the reasons for declining the cheapest quote, you may be expected to pay the difference between the cheapest quote and the chosen quote.

Avoiding conflicts of interest in procurement

We recognise it is possible applicants or persons connected with them (such as relatives, business partners or friends) may wish to tender for a contract being offered by the applicant.

Whilst this is acceptable, applicants will need to ensure that the tendering process is undertaken in an open, transparent and fair manner, as outlined above, which does not give one person or company tendering any advantage over another, which arises from the process. If an applicant / developer or any person connected with them, has an interest in any of the potential bids for a contract offered:

  •  That applicant/developer, person or party with an interest must outline that interest in writing.

  • That person or party with an interest should take no part whatsoever in any of the tender evaluation procedures.

  • Specifications and evaluation criteria must not be biased or tailored to favour one solution or any one party over another.

The purpose of these guidelines is to ensure fairness in the spending of public money and that the integrity of the applicant is not compromised.

8. Welsh Language

Where the Funding includes or relates to the provision of services or written materials (including signage and information published on-line) in Wales, they must be provided in such a way as to not treat the Welsh language less favourably than English, in accordance with the Welsh Language Measure (Wales) 2011.

 9. Subsidy Control

This scheme is covered by the current UK Government Subsidy Control Act (2022). The total amount of Minimum Financial Assistance (MFA) received over a rolling period of three fiscal years should not exceed £315,000 per business*. If you have received any other financial assistance in the past 3 financial years please describe the support in the box below. It is the responsibility of the applicant to monitor the level of MFA received; you will be asked to declare that this has not been exceeded in the event of an offer being made.

[* The MFA financial threshold applies at company group level.]

All bids must also consider how they will deliver in line with subsidy control as per UK Government guidelines (opens in a new tab)

Where applicants do not adequately demonstrate that the proposed project is compliant under the UK Subsidy Control Regime it may be considered ineligible, and your application could be rejected.

10. Post completion - terms and conditions

It should be noted that the Pembrokeshire Carbon Reduction Fund is a discretionary grant and is subject to approval by Pembrokeshire County Council.

The grant will be recovered should the business cease to trade, relocate or the property sold on within 5 years of award.

For properties constructed or improved as part of a grant scheme administered by PCC, the Authority will seek to register an interest in the grant-aided property with the Land Registry by either a Restriction or a Legal Charge as follows:

▪ Restrictions to be placed with Land Registry for projects or schemes receiving grants directly from or via the authority of £25,000 & below for the period relevant to the funding programme under which the grant is being paid.
This process will alert the authority to any change in the ownership of the property and of any potential consequence on the terms and conditions on which the grant was awarded. The grant recipient will be responsible for pursuing the removal of any Restriction or Legal Charge and any costs associated with the process, at the end of the period.

It is strongly recommended that goods purchased in relation to the grant are purchased using the business bank account.

Grants are paid retrospectively, therefore should the application be successful, the grant money is paid direct into the bank account of the applicant business. This is based on receipt or evidence of purchase and defrayment i.e., original or on-line printed bank statements and original invoices to confirm expenditure.

The applicant must accept the terms and conditions of the grant by completing the Notification of Approval and Terms & Conditions within 30 days from receipt. All expenditure associated to the grant must be completed and claimed by 30th November 2024.

Monitoring of the business and funding outputs will take place following final payment of the grant and evidence of the outputs will be required by 30th November 2024. Failure to achieve the committed outputs could result in the claw back of grant funds.

Outputs for the scheme you may be asked to contribute to include;

  • Estimate of tonnes of carbon saved

For all grant purposes monitoring of the claim and evidence will take place with prior notice at 1, 3 and 5 years from the date of award of the grant.

Should the project not proceed within the period stipulated in the offer of grant, the offer of grant will automatically lapse. Any variation to the Terms & Conditions set out in the Approval Letter must be requested and agreed.

Cash purchases will not be considered for grant payment.

Items purchased through lease purchase, hire purchase, extended credit agreements/finance leases will not be considered for grant funding.

Items purchased with credit cards are eligible. The credit card must belong to the business applying and applicants will need to provide a copy of the credit card statement as part of the claims process.

Grant may not be offered or paid if the business or applicant is in arrears with any payment to any of the participating local authorities operating the scheme.

Businesses can only submit one application to the Pembrokeshire Carbon Reduction Fund.

The Pembrokeshire Carbon Reduction Fund team reserves the right to publicise any grant support.

11. Claw back of grant funds

Funding shall be withheld and/ or, insofar as payment has been made, the grant recipient shall repay funding either in whole or in part, including if:

  • There has been an overpayment of funding

  • During its economic life, the project undergoes substantial change defined as being used for purposes other than those specified in the application or having a change of owner without notifying Pembrokeshire County Council.

The economic life is the period up to 5 years from date of the final payment of grant and repayment of funding will be required as follows:

  • Within 1 year - Funding to be repaid in full

  • Within 2 years - 80% of funding to be repaid

  • Within 3 years - 60% of funding to be repaid

  • Within 4 years - 40% of funding to be repaid

  • Within 5 years - 20% of funding to be repaid

  • After 5 years - No funding to be repaid          

The above are minimum repayment requirements.

The grant must be repaid in full on demand if:

  • The applicant is found to have made any misrepresentation in connection with the application

  • Ceases to trade

  • Is a significant change from the details you provided in your application

  • Sells any items purchased with grant money

  • Change of ownership

  • Moves out of Pembrokeshire or sold

12. Data Protection & Privacy 

Pembrokeshire County Council is the data controller for the personal information you provide on this form. Your information will be used in the exercise of our official authority and will not be used for any other purpose. Please note that we may check the data you provide here against other Council and UK Government datasets in order to verify your application and prevent fraud. For further information on how Pembrokeshire County Council handles your data, please see our corporate privacy notice.

The personal information we have collected from you will be shared with fraud prevention agencies who will use it to prevent fraud and money-laundering and to verify your identity.If fraud is detected, you could be refused certain services, finance, or employment. Further details of how your information will be used by us and these fraud prevention agencies, and your data protection rights, can be found by visiting: CIFAS (opens in a new tab)

13. How to Apply

 

Before you make a full application, you will need to submit an expression of interest which outlines your business proposal and costs. You will need the following information:

  • Your details

  • Business details and description of its main activity

  • Indicative project costs

  • Details of any additional funding / finance

You can find the form in the link below.

Expression of Interest Form - Apply Here

ID: 9831, revised 19/12/2023