A new jointly funded package from the Commonwealth and Victorian Governments will give small and medium businesses the extra support and confidence they need to recover from the most recent lockdown.
New cash payments will underpin businesses most affected by the lockdown introduced to eradicate the Delta strain of Coronavirus that has re-emerged in Victoria.
Recognising the heavy toll on businesses across the state, a $400 million package jointly funded by the Commonwealth and Victorian Government will provide automatic payments to almost 100,000 eligible businesses, including sole traders, to ensure funds are distributed quickly.
Further hardship funds will be made available to eligible businesses that do not qualify for existing programs.
The new package is in addition to the $400 million Commonwealth-State injection announced last week and builds on more than $950 million in support grants paid by the Victorian Government into the bank accounts of Victorian businesses since June.
Member for Mallee, Anne Webster, welcomed the new funding announcement.
“This additional funding will help small and medium businesses that are struggling to pay the bills as a result of further restrictions,” Dr Webster said.
“As soon as the restrictions were announced on Thursday, my office began receiving calls for support. I took my concerns to the Federal Health Minister and Treasurer, and I’m pleased that the Commonwealth and State Governments have come together to deliver another $400 million to Victoria this week.
“Local businesses continue to be hit hard by these restrictions, so it’s vitally important that we deliver support in a timely and effective way”.
Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said the Morrison Government has and continues to support Victorians during the pandemic.
“Since the start of the pandemic the Federal Government has delivered more than $45 billion to Victorian families and businesses to support them in their hour of need,” the Treasurer said.
“On top of the $415 million in COVID-19 Disaster Payments and business support we have provided in recent weeks, we are now delivering a further $200 million in business support for Victorian Business.”
“This will help cushion the blow of the current lockdown and provide hope for the future.”
Five key elements make up the support package to help businesses deal with ongoing public health restrictions.
COVID-19 Disaster Payments
Eligible workers across the state who lose hours due to the lockdown will be eligible for support through the Commonwealth’s COVID-19 Disaster Payment, as will businesses that do not qualify for Victorian Government support programs because they are not registered for GST.
The COVID-19 Disaster Payment will be administered through Services Australia, with Victoria assuming responsibility to fund payments in areas that have not been declared a hotspot by the Commonwealth.
Individuals will have access to
- $750 p/w if they have lost 20+ hours of work.
- $450 p/w if they have lost 8-20 hours of work.
Business Costs Assistance Program
Under the new State-Commonwealth business support package confirmed today, more than 90,000 businesses will be automatically paid a Business Costs Assistance Program Round Three grant of $2,800 – an allocation of $266 million.
Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund
New payments of $5,000 to $20,000 will be made to more than 8,900 hospitality venues across Victoria that received funding support from the Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund through the May/June and July lockdowns. Payments will be automatic and graded by venue capacity to a total of $68.8 million.
Alpine Business Support Program
Alpine businesses will receive between $5,000 (off-mountain) and $20,000 (employing businesses, on-mountain) under a $10.6 million extension of the Alpine Business Support Program.
Small Business COVID Hardship Fund
Some $54 million will be added to the Small Business COVID Hardship Fund announced last week, allowing grants of up to $8,000 to be paid to small businesses that are not eligible for support under existing programs and have experienced a 70 percent reduction in turnover.
More information about the Business Costs Assistance Program, the Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund, the Alpine Business Support Program and the Small Business COVID Hardship Fund will be available at business.vic.gov.au.