ABOUT 760 firms in West Oxfordshire could be given rate relief as part of a £500,000 scheme.

West Oxfordshire District Council’s cabinet will today consider whether to approve the Government-funded project. Under the scheme, retail companies with an annual open market rentable value of £50,000 or less in each of the financial years 2014/15 and 2015/16, would receive relief of up to £1,000.

It could include shops, post offices, petrol stations, markets, restaurants, cafes and pubs, but the council will also decide whether charity shops can benefit.

A report prepared by the council’s head of revenues and benefits, Jon Dearing, recommended it for approval.

Meanwhile the council will also consider whether to provide flood support packages for residents and firms affected. It says about 12 companies and 24 homes were flooded in the district in the past few months.

Businesses could be eligible for 100 per cent rate relief for three months if they have been flooded since December and could receive cash for recovery and flood defences.

Home owners would receive a council tax discount and financial support to pay for flood defences. It would be funded by the Government but the exact figure has not yet been revealed.