The City of Adelaide will provide additional support to the community for a further three months as part of its ongoing efforts to help the city recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Council has acted quickly since the crisis hit to support its community and have introduced a range of measures including:
• Rent relief
• Extra hardship assistance
• Freezing the rate in the dollar
• Freezing its fees and charges
• Launching its Recover + Reimagine and #MyAdelaide initiatives, which are supporting the city to get back on its feet.
This latest measure will mean small business lessees (SME’s) in Council-owned buildings, Adelaide Central Market tenants and sporting and community lease / licence holders will be able to apply to defer paying 50% of their base rent or licence from 1 July 2020 until 30 September 2020 (subject to terms and conditions).
The offer of deferred payments can then be gradually paid off, subject to lease / licence terms, within a maximum of two years.
This latest support for our community follows Council’s quick leadership response in April when we launched our $4 million City Support package, which provided 100% rent waivers for commercial tenants in Council-owned buildings and traders in the Adelaide Central Market for three months.
We also know many of our ratepayers are doing it tough and that is why Council has also extended its rates hardship assistance measures, which are available to all city ratepayers.
This will allow eligible ratepayers to apply to postpone paying the 1st quarter rates (due 30 September 2020) for three months until 31 December 2020.
Additionally, no fines or interest will be charged on any 1st quarter outstanding rates until 31 December 2020.
Fines and interest will also be suspended on all historic rates outstanding until 31 December 2020 and no new debt recovery action will be instigated for any business that enters into a financial arrangement with Council (including any pre-existing debt).
Council has also partnered with Business SA for the delivery of its City Business Support Package, providing specialised services and advice to City businesses to assist their recovery and enable future growth and prosperity.
Residents and visitors to the city will also benefit as Council resolved to freeze most of its fees and charges, making it more affordable to come into the city.
The City of Adelaide will freeze the rate in the dollar for the seventh consecutive year. Over the past six years, this has delivered a significant benefit of $15 million to ratepayers and will save them another $1.33 million this year.
The City of Adelaide will also continue to support traders through its Recover + Reimagine project and its #MyAdelaide campaign, which are encouraging people back into the city.
As part of this campaign, 40 heaters have been distributed to city restaurants and cafes to support outdoor dining and retail activity, and Hutt, O’Connell and Melbourne Streets now sparkle with welcoming fairy lights.
City streets and laneways are also humming with the sound of musicians through our Music In the Streets initiative every Friday lunchtime and heating up with warm firepits, musicians and DJs for our Winter Weekends on Friday and Saturday nights, in partnership with Music SA and the State Government.
We have done all of this despite COVID-19 having a significant on Council’s operational income, which is forecast to reduce by $21 million this financial year, due to the unexpected drop-in city activity.
Lord Mayor Sandy Verschoor said Council would continue to focus on city recovery.
“We understand the significant challenges being faced by our community during this difficult period,” the Lord Mayor said.
“We are determined to do everything we can continue to support our residents and businesses through this crisis,” the Lord Mayor said.
“Council is here to work with our community, especially those experiencing hardship, and these measures will help take the immediate pressure off.”