Date posted: 29/09/2021

ACT government message about COVID assistance

Message dated 24 September 2021 from ACT government to CA ANZ about COVID business assistance

In brief

  • The ACT government has written to CA ANZ to clarify various issues about the roll out of COVID assistance packages in the ACT
  • It discusses the use of bank accounts to evidence the 30% decline in turnover
  • It also discusses not for profits, industry associations and the extension of COVID assistance
CA ANZ has received the following message from the ACT government.

"Bank statements to support evidence of 30% decline

We’ve heard your feedback regarding our requests for bank statements to support the evidence of a 30% decline in turnover under the COVID-19 Business Support Grants program. The Guidelines have always included a requirement for applicants to upload a bank statement to verify the account details provided through the application form. Our teams double check these details to confirm they were entered correctly, and to ensure that payment is made into an account genuinely connected with the business.

After applications opened, we very quickly saw a lot of applications being submitted with no, or very little, evidence to support the turnover decline requirement. To assist businesses to provide satisfactory evidence of turnover we updated guidance to ask that bank statements be provided at a minimum because, for the most part, this will contain the right information that our assessment teams need. 

We acknowledge that this will not be the right evidence for all businesses, and that is why we have always said we will accept a broad range of evidence types. While we recommended bank statements are provided at a minimum, this is neither mandatory nor necessarily sufficient evidence on their own. We have recently updated the text in our FAQs to clarify that the bank statements are a recommended minimum, rather than mandatory in all applications. “

"Not for Profits are eligible to apply

We have had a number of enquiries from Not for Profit (NFP) organisations who are not required to register for GST $150,000 in turnover. Our FAQs have been updated to allow GST-exempt NFPs to be eligible so long as they meet the other eligibility criteria and are registered with the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profit Commission. "

"ACT Industry Associations are eligible to apply

The COVID-19 Business Support Grants Guidelines will be amended to allow ACT industry associations to apply. Local branches of national industry associations are eligible to apply, but national-level associations are not, even if they are operating or headquartered in the ACT.  Industry associations must demonstrate they are operating as a business, employing paid staff and/or selling goods and services that make up more than 30 per cent of the organisation’s income. Government funding will be excluded from any calculations of revenue or turnover when determining eligibility. Industry associations must meet all other eligibility requirements for the grants."

"Announcement of extension payments to support business

In line with the extension of lockdown until 15 October. The ACT and Commonwealth Governments have agreed on an extension to the business support programs to those businesses still significantly impacted by the public health measures. Details of these extension payments are currently being finalised and more information will be available soon. In the meantime you can read the announcement here. "