Business Sector Advice – Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Statement from CEO Dale Dickson:

“The City has today announced a raft of measures designed to provide immediate financial support for local business affected by the Novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The measures complement the significant packages being offered by the Queensland and Australian Governments during this critical time.

Work has also commenced on various future industry specific stimulus measures, to be considered and decided after Saturday’s council elections.”

The following measures are designed to provide immediate financial support for local businesses currently in survival mode with reduced revenue and significant cash flow difficulties.

Fees and charges:

Changes will take effect immediately and will apply until 30 June 2020, as a minimum.

  • Waiving roadside dining fees for the period 1 February to 30 June 2020.

    With restaurants closed there will be no further fees until 30 June 2020.

  • Waiving development application fees relating directly to the COVID-19 emergency until 30 June 2020.

    For example an existing restaurant converting to a takeaway service.

  • Waiving film application fees until 30 June 2020.
  • Waiving rents for businesses with commercial leases on City premises from 1 March until 30 June.
  • Waiving fees to commercial vessels from 1 February until 30 June.
  • Waiving fees for any bookings of a Council facility, venue or park between 1 February and 30 June that has to cancel due to COVID-19.

    All refund policies are being relaxed to accommodate full refunds.

Rates, water charges, waste water charges and waste charges:

Changes will take effect immediately and will apply until 30 June 2020, as a minimum.

  • Waiving of all interest payments for businesses that enter affordable repayment agreements for water charges, waste water charges, waste charges and rates.

    Eligibility now applies to all business property owners and approval can be provided over the phone.

  • All new debt recovery action for overdue water charges, waste water charges, waste charges and rates will be suspended for businesses who enter an approved payment arrangement.

    This excludes pre-existing debt incurred prior to the pandemic.

  • Interest charged on unpaid water charges, waste water charges, waste charges and rates will be zero per cent (0%) for businesses that enter into an approved repayment arrangement.

    Businesses without approved arrangements for repaying overdue water charges, waste water charges, waste charges and rates will have their penalty interest rate cut from 9.83 per cent to 3 per cent.

Expanding the city’s WI-FI network:

A free Wi-Fi service will be provided to business customers within Southport, Surfers Paradise, Chevron Renaissance, Broadbeach, Miami and Coolangatta; providing access to 4GB of data, at speeds close to 30Mbs, via a secure network connection.

Payments to suppliers:

The City is making payment times to current suppliers faster.

We have allocated additional staff and are making daily payment runs so businesses are paid more quickly.

In addition to the above immediate business assistance measures, the City will be considering a broad based industry specific stimulus package at a later date.

  • Stimulus measures will possibly include the following:
  • accelerated capital works program
  • revised purchasing policy to benefit local businesses
  • fast track a joint venture to deliver high speed internet services to businesses
  • further assistance for specific industries including entertainment, dining, film, tourism, education, health and medical research

To access these business support measures:

Website: cityofgoldcoast.com.au/businesssupport

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