Government Stimulus Packages – What’s new

There has been a raft of announcements in recent times from both the Federal and State Governments regarding stimulus support. Below is a summary of new and important items that may apply to you.

Jobkeeper 2.0

  1. Jobkeeper has been extended by six months to 28 March 2021. Your business may be eligible for the second phase of the Jobkeeper program if your business actual turnover has reduced by more than 30%, even if you did not apply for the original Jobkeeper.
  2. Do you have part-time employees? Did you know that part-time employees will receive less than full-time employees? You will need to assess how much you pay each employee under Jobkeeper 2.0.

Business Support Fund

Have you been impacted by the renewed restrictions that commenced in early August 2020, with your business forced to close, or be restricted in its operations? You may be eligible for a state government grants of $10,000, $15,000 or $20,000. To be eligible you generally must:

  • Operate a business located within Victoria.
  • Participate in the Jobkeeper Payment Scheme.
  • Employ people and be registered for Worksafe.
  • Have a payroll of less than $10m in 2019/20.
  • Be registered for GST
  • Hold an ABN
  • Be registered with the responsible Federal or State Regulator.

Other Business Support

1. Sole traders – Grants of up to $3,000 to eligible sole traders in sectors such as retail,
accommodation and food services, creative and media, hairdressing, gyms, events, education and training, who operate from commercial premises (or location) as a tenant.

2. Licensed hospitality businesses – Grants of up to $30,000 for licensed pubs, clubs, hotels, bars, restaurants and reception centres, based on their venue capacity and location. Please note that businesses that are eligible for Licensed Hospitality Business Grant will not be eligible for the Business Support Fund.

3. Tax waivers and deferrals

  • Payroll tax deferral for businesses with payrolls up to $10 million for the full 2020/21 financial year.
  • Waiver of Vacant Residential Land tax for vacancies in 2020.
  • Waiver of $27m in liquor license fees for 2021.
  • 50% stamp duty discount for commercial and industrial property for all of regional Victoria will be brought forward to 1 January 2021.
  • 25% waiver of the Congestion Levy, with the balance deferred.
  • Deferral of the planned increase in the Landfill Levy for six months.

4. Business adaption

(a) Melbourne City Recovery Fund – Support for the CBD to reopen to ‘COVID normal’ in the lead up to Christmas and during summer. It includes grants for small and medium businesses to pay for equipment, convert spaces (e.g., rooftops, courtyards) into hospitality zones, and remodel internal layouts for a better flow of patrons.

(b) Outdoor Eating and Entertainment Package – Funding to support hospitality businesses and councils prepare for COVID normal reopening across Victoria. It includes grants of up to $5,000 for hospitality businesses (e.g., pubs, clubs, restaurants and cafes) with an annual payroll of less than $3million to help adapt to outdoor dining.

(c) Voucher program to assist sole traders and small businesses in building their digital capability through off-the-shelf digital programs such as Shopify or Square online to help adapt to online operations.

(d) An assistance package may be available for Victorian exporters to get their products to market by addressing logistics and supply chain issues caused by the pandemic.

(e) Grants of up to $500,000 per metropolitan and regional council, and $250,000 for rural councils.

If any of these situations apply to you, please contact our office to discuss your options.

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