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Upper Bann MP Carla Lockhart has called on Sinn Fein’s Conor Murphy to ‘get a move on’ and ensure the Localised Restriction Grant payments for businesses are issued as soon as possible. The DUP MP made the call having been contacted by many businesses in her constituency in urgent need of the support to maintain jobs.

Carla Lockhart said,

“We are now almost three weeks into these restrictions and businesses are without the support they were promised. With bills to pay, jobs to sustain and food to put on the table at home, it is three weeks of delay that is hard for some to sustain. That is what local businesses are telling me, and some are close to finances running dry.

It is imperative that the Finance Minister gets a move on and gets on top of this situation. I note the Deputy First Minister tweeting about Sinn Fein protecting families, workers and businesses through this pandemic following the UK Government's announcement about furlough extension and increase in self-employment support. Rather than seek to claim credit for what the United Kingdom Government is doing, she should have a word with her colleague Conor Murphy and ensure he delivers for families, workers and businesses.

I am comforted that the grants to be paid through the Economy Department will have the first run of payments issued in the next 24 hours. The blockage on the larger grants lies in DoF and my hope is that the will and the resource is being put to getting this money out to those in need as soon as possible.”