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News 7 May 2020

Expanded COVID-19 support - is your business eligible?

Over the past week the Victorian Government has announced a range of new and expanded support for business.

Expanded eligibility for Business Support Fund

The eligibility criteria for the Business Support Fund will be expanded to include businesses with a wages bill less than the payroll tax threshold of $650,000 who are participating in the Commonwealth JobKeeper program, regardless of the sector they operate in. However, eligibility for the fund will not be expanded to include sole traders, who are covered by JobKeeper.

Businesses who applied for Business Support Fund payments but were initially not eligible based on their sector classification will be contacted by the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions and do not have to submit a new application.

Businesses that have not previously applied for a grant due to their sector classification are encouraged to make an application through Business Victoria.

This change addresses many of the concerns raised with the Chamber by members.

Support for pubs, clubs and restaurants

The Victorian Government also will make $40 million from the Business Support Fund available to licenced venues with an individual annual turnover of up to $50 million, but who are not covered by the Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme, for rent relief.

The Victorian Chamber is represented on a steering committee advising government on the distribution of these funds.

Email our policy team to be advised when further information on this assistance is available.

JobKeeper, payroll tax and WorkCover premiums

The Victorian Government has announced that any additional payments made to bridge the gap between an employee’s normal wage and the $1500 a fortnight required for the JobKeeper program are now exempt from payroll tax and WorkCover premiums.

As such, JobKeeper payments to staff that have been stood down or payments above a part-time or casual employee’s usual salary, due to JobKeeper being a minimum $1500 fortnightly payment, will be exempt from payroll tax and the WorkCover premium. For more information visit sro.vic.gov.au/coronavirus

Freeze on fee and fine increases

The Victorian Government will also freeze all fees and fines that were due to be increased in July at current levels – including car registration, traffic infringements, court-imposed penalties and permit fees. The Fire Services Property Levy will also be frozen at this year’s collection level.

Media Contact

All media enquiries may be directed to the Media and Communications Manager

03 8662 5310

0423 883 945

media@victorianchamber.com.au

For all other enquiries please contact the Victorian Chamber on 03 8662 5333

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