New support has been announced for small businesses, including sole traders, most impacted by the coronavirus circuit-breaker action over the Valentine’s Day weekend – with hospitality, tourism, events and creative industries operators to benefit from grants.
The $143 million Circuit Breaker Support Package is expected to help more than 50,000 Victorian businesses who incurred costs such as the loss of perishable goods, cancelled gigs and foregone trading.
The package contains four initiatives targeted at businesses, including small and micro businesses.
The new $92 million Business Costs Assistance Program will offer grants of $2,000 for eligible employing and non-employing businesses in the hospitality, food wholesaling, tourism, events and selected retail industries. Businesses with an annual payroll of up to $3 million will be eligible.
A $24.9 million injection to the Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund will give previous recipients of this grant an automatic one-off $3,000 per premises payment.
The Victorian Accommodation Support Program recognises the impact of cancellations on regional and metropolitan accommodation providers through a $16.2 million commitment. Accommodation providers who had 10 or fewer cancellations can apply for $2,250 per business while providers with more than 10 booking cancellations can apply for $4,500 per business.
A further $10 million will expand the Regional Travel Voucher Scheme to include a new Melbourne Travel Voucher Scheme, offering 40,000 vouchers for $200 for travel in greater Melbourne, and an additional 10,000 vouchers to support travel in regional Victoria.
The Regional Travel Voucher Scheme and Melbourne Travel Voucher Scheme now spans 200,000 vouchers for eligible Victorians, providing a vital boost to the tourism sector as the state resumes its recovery.