Latest grants for small businesses facing lockdownStuart Taverner
As lockdown-weary Victorians are battered by yet another wave of COVID-19 community transmissions cases and an ensuing lockdown, small businesses are once again feeling the squeeze.
Since entering a state-wide lockdown on August 5, the Victorian state government has announced a new package of relief grants aimed at providing automatic payments to almost 100,000 eligible businesses in Victoria, including sole traders.
So, how much government support is there for your small or micro business? Find out below how much financial assistance you may be eligible for amid Victoria’s latest lockdown.
Big boost for small and medium sized businesses
The lockdown has prompted a third round of funding for the Business Costs Assistance Program, meaning more than 90,000 small and medium sized businesses will be automatically paid $2800.
You don’t even need to apply: this grant for small businesses will be paid to those who already received a grant under the Business Costs Assistance Program Round Two or the Business Costs Assistance Program Round Two July Extension.
Small Business COVID Hardship Fund
Businesses that find themselves ineligible for round three of the Business Costs Assistance Program (or other existing support programs) AND have experienced a 70% reduction in turnover, will be able to apply for up to $8000.
The Victorian Government has signalled that further hardship funds would be made available to eligible businesses that do not qualify for existing programs.
Help for microbusinesses and other employees
As always, eligible workers 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.
Most microbusinesses not registered for GST, are eligible for the COVID-19 Disaster Payment of $600 or $375 per week, depending on the number of hours of lost work.
Hospitality venues will be served with a much-needed lifeline through new payments of $5000 to $20,000 from the Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund.
Once again, payments will be automatic and graded by venue capacity.
Alpine Resorts Winter Support Program
Alpine businesses won’t be left high and dry. Businesses can receive between $5000 (for off-mountain businesses) and $20,000 (for employing businesses, on mountain) under an extension of the Alpine Resorts Support Program.
When will the lockdown end?
The Victorian lockdown is currently slated to last for seven days, beginning from Thursday, August 5. Keep an eye on the Victorian Government’s COVID-19 website for lockdown changes, extensions or updates.
Right now, there are only five reasons to leave home:
- getting the food and the supplies you need
- exercising for up to two hours
- care or caregiving
- authorised work or education if you can’t do it from home
- getting vaccinated at the nearest possible location