New help to get the state through this outbreak | State politics

SUPPORT PACKAGE: Member for Bathurst Paul Toole is encouraging residents to
continue to support local businesses.
SUPPORT PACKAGE: Member for Bathurst Paul Toole is encouraging residents to continue to support local businesses.

A PACKAGE of measures from the Australian and NSW governments has been announced to support individuals and businesses affected by the latest COVID-19 outbreak.

This is welcome news as the new combined package will be available statewide, giving peace of mind to individuals, families and businesses.

The aim of this comprehensive economic support package is to keep our local economy strong, save jobs and protect businesses across NSW.

The current restrictions across rural and regional NSW have been difficult for many in our community, but this package ensures support is here during this uncertain time.

Under the 2021 COVID-19 package, the COVID-19 Disaster Payment will be further expanded and increased to $600 if a person has lost 20 or more hours of work a week or $375 if a person has lost between eight and less than 20 hours of work a week.

The package will also see the payment be made available to those outside of Commonwealth Disaster declared hotspots that meet the criteria for payment.

Other key components of the 2021 COVID-19 package include:

  • An extension to the previously announced business grants program. This means eligible businesses with Australian wages below $10 million can claim grants between $7500 and $15,000 to cover the first three weeks of restrictions, and takes the potential size of the program to $2.1 billion;
  • Up to $2 billion committed to the scheme to provide cashflow support to businesses to help them retain staff, to be delivered together with the Commonwealth;
  • Payroll tax waivers of 25 per cent for businesses with Australian wages of between $1.2 million and $10 million that have experienced a 30 per cent decline in turnover, as well as payroll tax deferrals and interest-free repayment plans;
  • A new grants program for micro businesses with a turnover of between $30,000 and $75,000 which experience a decline in turnover of 30 per cent. The businesses will be eligible for a $1500 payment per fortnight of restrictions;
  • A capped grant of up to $1500 for residential landlords who are not liable to pay land tax who reduce rent for tenants estimated at $210 million;
  • Land tax relief equal to the value of rent reductions provided by commercial, retail and residential landlords to financially distressed tenants, up to 100 per cent of the 2021 land tax year liability;
  • Introduction of legislative amendments to ensure a short-term eviction moratorium for rental arrears where a residential tenant suffers loss of income of 25 per cent due to COVID-19 and meets a range of criteria;
  • No recovery of security bonds, or lockouts or evictions of impacted retail and commercial tenants prior to mediation;
  • Deferral of gaming tax assessments for clubs until December 21, 2021 and hotels until January 21, 2021;
  • A $75 million support package for the performing arts sector to be administered by Create NSW;
  • A support package for the accommodation sector worth $26 million;
  • $12 million in additional funding for temporary accommodation for those at risk of or experiencing homelessness; and
  • $5.1 million in NSW funding to support mental health.

Small and medium sized businesses are able to register their interest for support payments through Service NSW by visiting service.nsw.gov.au/ or calling 13 77 88.

To apply for the COVID Disaster Payment, contact Services Australia by visiting servicesaustralia.gov.au or calling 180 22 66.