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Australia Cafes, gyms, restaurants to get $10,000 for overheads

17:20  02 april  2020
17:20  02 april  2020 Source:   smh.com.au

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Cafes, corner stores, gyms and even boutique accommodation providers will be among the small businesses in NSW eligible for $10,000 cash grants to cover overheads and bills during the coronavirus crisis.

The Berejiklian government will put $750 million into its Small Business Support Fund as the centrepiece of a third round of stimulus measures to keep small businesses afloat.

Businesses that have been "highly impacted" by public health restrictions banning gatherings will be eligible if they have between one and 19 employees and a turnover of more than $75,000.

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A government source said it was likely that the definition of highly impacted would be for a business to have suffered revenue loss over a certain period of about 75 per cent. Many businesses have already closed.

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Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the fund was based on the "hugely successful" scheme rolled-out during the recent NSW bushfires, which provided almost $42 million to as many as 4200 businesses.

"This is about getting cash into small businesses when they are struggling right now in the face of an unprecedented situation," Ms Berejiklian said.

"These grants will provide a big boost, and we will make the application process easy to ensure small businesses can receive some cash flow as soon as possible to meet pressing needs."

Treasurer Dominic Perrottet said the fund was designed to provide fast relief and would help businesses across NSW.

"Many local caf??s, restaurants, corner shops, gyms and small accommodation providers will be eligible to apply," Mr Perrottet said.

"We have the structures in place after the bushfires, and expect to see this money rolling out the door shortly.

"This is real, rapid, relief for tens of thousands of businesses and it will help ensure many businesses that are not eligible for payroll tax waivers and deferrals can live to trade another day."

Small Business Minister Damien Tudehope said the fund would offer a vital lifeline for businesses.

"This is the largest support package for small businesses in the history of NSW, it will make a huge difference to many lives," Mr Tudehope said.

Applications for the grant will be available through Service NSW within a fortnight and remain open until June 1, Mr Tudehope said.

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Last month, the NSW government announced it would spend $2.3 billion on the COVID-19 crisis, including boosting intensive care units, buying critical equipment such as ventilators and setting up respiratory clinics.

The first round of stimulus measures included an extra $700 million in health and $1.6 billion in tax relief for small businesses.

It also includes $450 million to waive payroll tax for the next three months for businesses with payrolls of up to $10 million.

The government will also forego $80 million to axe a range of fees and charges for small businesses including bars, cafes, restaurants and tradespeople and provide $250 million to employ extra cleaners of public infrastructure such as transport, schools and public buildings.

As part of the second stage of the rescue package, gaming tax for clubs, pubs and hotels and lotteries tax has been deferred for six months, on condition the money is used to retain staff.

The parking space levy will be put on hold for six months and commercial tenants with fewer than 20 employees in government-owned properties will also have a rent freeze.

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