Date posted: 13/09/2021

Summary of VIC COVID-19 business support

Support measures introduced to help VIC businesses during the COVID-19 lockdown and in recovery

Outlined below is a summary of government support to help Victorian businesses during the recent COVID-19 lockdown and in recovery, including new measures announced from July 2021. Chartered Accountants can help businesses break down the information for their clients and stakeholders.

We encourage you to regularly check the Business Victoria website for the latest details on COVID-19 business grants and programs

Measure Summary Resources

COVID-19 Disaster Payment

The COVID-19 Disaster Payment has been expanded and increased on 28 July 2021. Eligible Victorian workers and sole trader business owners in lockdown in a Commonwealth hotspot from 6 August who lose work and do not qualify for Victorian Government support programs will be able to access:

  • Payments of $750 pw (up from $600 pw) to individuals who lose 20 or more hours of work a week during the period of the lockdown
  • Payments of $450 pw (up from $375 pw) to individuals who lose between 8 and 20 hours of work, or a full day of work, during the period of the lockdown

There is no liquid assets test to receive these payments.

The payment will be available from day one of any lockdown, with claims made from day eight in arrears, with a weekly payment then made for the duration of the Commonwealth hotspot declaration.

The vast majority of Victorian microbusinesses not registered for GST will also be eligible for the COVID-19 Disaster Payment.

Micro-businesses and sole trader business owners can obtain assistance with their application by making an appointment with the Business Victoria Concierge Service on 13 22 15.

The Victorian Government has assumed responsibility to fund payments in areas that are not declared a Commonwealth hotspot.

The COVID-19 Disaster Payment is non assessable income and non exempt income for tax purposes. This applies to assessments for the 2020-21 income year onwards.

Treasurer's announcement 19 August 2021

Treasurer’s announcement 12 August 2021

Premier's announcement 6 August 2021

Prime Minister's announcement 28 July 2021

Premier's announcement 21 July 2021

Premier's announcement 16 July 2021

Apply at Services Australia

Business Continuity Fund The Business Continuity Fund provides $5,000 grants to businesses that remain impacted by capacity limits due to public health restrictions.

Businesses located in the CBD will receive an additional $2,000 ($7,000 in total).

All recipients must have received or been eligible for the previous Business Cost Assistance Program Round Two (or extension), and no application is necessary (i.e. eligible recipients receive the payments automatically). 

Premier's announcement 28 July 2021

Business Victoria information

Frequently asked questions

Small Business COVID Hardship Fund

Successive government announcements have seen the Fund increase to $252 million, with grants of $14,000 available to SME businesses across the state.

Eligibility criteria include:

  • annual payroll of up to $10 million
  • has experienced a 70% or greater reduction in revenue
  • the business is not eligible under existing business support programs.

Information on how to apply, including eligibility conditions, FAQs and the Accounts' letter template, is available on the Business Victoria Website.

Closing date: 10 September 2021

4 September update: Grant amount has increased to $20,000. Businesses that have already received a lower Small Business COVID Hardship Fund grant will receive an automatic top-up payment.

Treasurer’s announcement 4 September 2021

Treasurer's announcement 19 August 2021

Premier's announcement 19 August 2021

Treasurer’s announcement 12 August 2021

Premier's announcement 12 August 2021

Premier’s announcement 6 August 2021

Business Victoria announcement 6 August 2021

Premier’s announcement 28 July 2021

Business Victoria information

Business Costs Assistance Program

Successive government announcements have resulted in a series of “rounds” of funding to support business as more lockdowns were announced. “Top ups” are also announced from time to time.

In broad terms:

  • Businesses that successfully applied for earlier rounds became automatically eligible for subsequent rounds and top-ups
  • Businesses not previously eligible could apply when “extensions” to the program were announced 

4 September update: Recipients of the Business Costs Assistance Program Round 2 or July Extension will receive automatic tiered payments based on annual payroll size.

  • No payroll or payroll below $650,000 - $2,800 a week
  • Payroll of $650,000 to $3 million - $5,600 a week
  • Payroll of $3 million to $10 million - $8,400 a week.
 

Treasurer’s announcement 4 September 2021

Treasurer's announcement 19 August 2021

Premier's announcement 19 August 2021

Premier’s announcement 6 August 2021

Business Victoria announcement 6 August 2021

Government announcement 21 July 2021

Government announcement 16 July 2021

Business Victoria information

Round two

16 July 2021 Top Up payment

 21 July 2021 Top Up payment

Round Two extension

Round Three

Round Three 12 August 2021 Top-Up for metropolitan Melbourne

Round Three 19 and 22 August 2021 Top-Up

Round Four

Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund 2021

4 September update: Recipients of the Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund 2021 or July Extension programs will receive automatic tiered payments based on premises capacity.

  • Capacity of up to 99 patrons or where patron capacity is not specified - $5,000
  • Capacity of 100 to 499 patrons - $10,000
  • Capacity of 500 or more patrons - $20,000.
 

Treasurer’s announcement 4 September 2021

Treasurer's announcement 19 August 2021

Premier's announcement 19 August 2021

Premier's announcement 6 August 2021

Business Victoria announcement 6 August 2021

Premier's announcement 28 July 2021

Premier's announcement 21 July 2021

Premier's announcement 16 July 2021

Business Victoria information              

Victorian Events Support Package 

The Victorian Events Support Package provides support for a range of events and included a dedicated stream for cinemas. Most of the programs have now closed. Business Victoria has indicated that a further round of the Impacted Public Events Support Program will open shortly.

The Live Performance Support Program Round Two provides support in two streams:

  • Presenters - provides either $7000 or $5000 for one event and a further $5000 for a second event to presenters of live performance events cancelled between 11:59pm on 27 May 2021 and 11:59pm on 2 September 2021 due to COVID-19 restrictions. 
  • Suppliers - provides either $200 or $500 per event to suppliers of goods and services to live performance events, which were cancelled between 11:59pm on 27 May 2021 and 11:59pm on 2 September 2021 because of COVID-19 restrictions

Applications closed on 8 September 2021.

Business Victoria information
Small Business Digital Adaptation Program  Rebates of $1,200 to enable eligible small businesses to access a range of digital tools to help you with cash flow, your website, online marketing, managing your jobs and projects, and keeping track of stock.

The program is expected to close on 5 December 2021.
Business Victoria information
Support for commercial tenants and landlords 

Legislation has been enacted to reintroduce the Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme, guaranteeing rent reductions for commercial tenants with an annual turnover under $50 million and a turnover decline of at least 30% due to COVID-19. The protections operate from 28 July 2021 to 15 January 2022. Tenants will be able to demonstrate their eligibility by providing a standard letter from their accountant.

The Victorian Small Business Commission (VSBC) offers a free mediation service to tenants and landlords.

The Victorian Government will also provide land tax relief of up to 25%, in addition to any previous relief, to landlords who provide rent relief to their eligible tenants. 

Premier’s announcement 5 August 2021

Premier’s announcement 28 July 2021

Small Business Minister’s announcement 28 July 2021

Victorian Small Business Commission Information 
Alpine Resorts Winter Support Program

This program assists businesses in Victoria’s alpine resorts, Dinner Plain and surrounding towns, who were most impacted by the May, June and July COVID-19 restrictions.

Stream 1: On-mountain and Dinner Plain businesses

  • Up to $138,000 per premises for employing businesses registered with WorkSafe Victoria
  • Up to $73,000 for businesses not registered with WorkSafe Victoria.

Stream 2: Off-mountain businesses

  • Funding up to $38,000.

On 6 August the government announced that Alpine businesses will receive between $5,000 (off-mountain) and $20,000 (employing businesses, on mountain) under a $10.6 million extension of the Alpine Business Support Program.

4 September update: An automatic top-up payment will be available for alpine businesses based on and off mountain. 

  • Off-mountain businesses - $10,000
  • On-mountain businesses with no employees - $20,000
  • On-mountain businesses with employees - $40,000.

If you think you could be eligible for the program please contact [email protected].

Closing date: 17 September 2021.

Treasurer’s announcement 4 September 2021

Premier's announcement 6 August 2021

Business Victoria information

 

Regional Tourism Support Package

Assists businesses, including accommodation providers, attractions and experiences, as they manage the impact of recent restrictions to stop the spread of coronavirus.

The package includes three initiatives:

  • 80,000 travel vouchers valued at $200 each to encourage Victorians to support regional tourism operators.
  • Business Costs Assistance Program Tourism Supplement 'Top Up Payment' to provide eligible tourism businesses up to $4,500 in extra support.
  • Alpine Support Program providing grants of up to $15,000 for businesses in the alpine resorts and Dinner Plain (now the Alpine Resorts Winter Support Program).

To be eligible for the Tourism Supplement 'Top Up Payment' businesses must have received the Business Costs Assistance Program Round 2 funding.

Premier's announcement 28 July 2021

Business Costs Assistance Program Round 2 Tourism Supplement

Regional Travel Voucher Scheme

Business recovery and resilience mentoring training

The Victorian Government is partnering with the Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) to deliver a business mentoring program for small businesses impacted by COVID-19.

Eligible business owners can receive up to four 2-hour mentoring sessions with an experienced professional who will help them make informed decisions about the future of their business.

Applications can be made at VCCI.

Apply at VCCI

Business Victoria information

Business Recovery Advisory Service

A service available to any business owner/operator in East Gippsland, Wellington and North East Victoria experiencing hardship, recovering from disasters, and needing assistance.

A free, one-on-one session is offered with a Business Recovery Adviser for help with all aspects of business operations, recovery planning and resilience building strategies.

Book a session by completing Business Victoria’s online form, calling 132215 or visiting your local Business Recovery Hub.

Make a booking at Business Victoria

Wellbeing and mental health support for Victorian small businesses

Mental health support for Victorians dealing with the challenges of running a small business through COVID-19 including one-to-one wellbeing support and free access to financial counsellors and business advisors through Partners in Wellbeing who can be contacted on their helpline at 1300 375 330.

About the Partners in Wellbeing Helpline

Business Victoria mental health support for business

Last updated: 10 September 2021

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