Businesses visited to ensure new regulations being followed
02 Oct 2020
Officers from Northumberland County Council have started visiting businesses around the county to ensure they are operating within the new government regulations and to offer support and assistance where it is needed.
The county council is keen to help businesses to remain open safely and will be checking to see that they understand and are complying with the new rules.
Northumberland County Councillor John Riddle, cabinet member for community services said: “Our business community is critical to Northumberland’s future prosperity and has shown tremendous resilience despite the challenges currently facing it, working tirelessly to ensure the safety of their staff, customers and visitors.
“The council will do absolutely everything it can to offer its support and work with businesses so that they can continue to trade as effectively as possible.
“However, the increasing infection rates in Northumberland are a real cause for concern and if a business is blatantly flouting the regulations then we will not hesitate to take strong enforcement action to protect the residents and communities of Northumberland.”
New enforcement powers given to local authorities include the issue of on the spot fixed penalty notices of up to £1,000, but also the powers to close premises down with immediate effect.
“We all have a duty to do our bit to help reduce the spread of this terrible virus across our county, to protect ourselves and each other and to keep our county open for business.” added Councillor Riddle.
Juliemma McLoughlin, Executive Director of Regeneration, Commercial and Economy at Northumberland County Council said: “We know that many businesses are going through an extremely difficult time at present, dealing with all of the impacts of Covid-19, and no-one wants to see progress de-railed, or for them to suffer more than they already have.
“This week we have written to all businesses outlining the new regulations and what is expected of them as we appreciate, they have been changing frequently.
“Our officers will be out and about right across the county to ensure businesses are operating safely and within the law and to offer their support if it is needed. We have huge confidence in our business community to play their part in reducing the spread of the virus.”
Chief Superintendent Janice Hutton, of Northumbria Police, added: “We will continue to support our local authority partners around their engagement and enforcement activity with businesses.
“We all have a responsibility to reduce the spread of the virus in our region and we will continue to engage with the public about the restrictions however, we along with our partners, are committed to taking appropriate action where necessary to protect our communities.”