Bayside City Council is extending its economic relief package to continue supporting local business and community tenants as they navigate the ongoing financial implications of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mayor Cr Clarke Martin said the economic response package provides much needed support to affected businesses, workers and the broader community.
“We’ve all been affected during the pandemic and businesses have been hit hard,” said Cr Martin.
“Bayside is a strong and connected community and it’s important for us to keep doing what is within our power to support local traders.
We’re encouraging Baysiders to shop local and hope that this economic relief package provides some breathing space to businesses and community groups who have found themselves in a challenging financial situation because of the pandemic.”
Support for Businesses
At March’s Ordinary Meeting of Council, Bayside’s Councillors resolved to provide an economic support package to help local traders.
Recognising that cash flow management will continue to be a pressing issue for our small business community in the coming months, relief measures have been extended for a period of six months to provide direct support and some needed financial relief:
- A 6 month (50%) waiver of fees for Food Act registrations;
- A 6 month (50%) waiver of Street Trading permits; and
- A 6 month (50%) waiver of Health Act Registrations.
This equates to over $790,000 in immediate cash support to small businesses through approximately 1200 fee waivers.
Support for community tenants
During recent weeks, Council has made contact with each of our tenants to provide support where possible and to assess the key impacts that the COVID-19 pandemic is having on their operations.
The combination of loss of income since lockdown restrictions and the limited return to normal activity will have a substantial impact on the future operations of all tenants.
Council is working within the State Government Regulations to provide rent relief and a waiver of some outgoings to commercial tenants that qualify for Job Keeper. However, many of our designated community tenants do not qualify for the Job Keeper Allowance.
Council has resolved that Community Tenants will be provided with a 12 month waiver of rent and buildings insurance premiums for the period from 29 March 2020 to 28 March 2021 (inclusive).
This equates to over $125,000 in immediate cash support to community tenants who are oftentimes volunteers for community groups who run the facilities.
Support for individuals
Residents experiencing financial difficulties are reminded they can defer rates payments with no penalty interest for up to 12 months under Council’s Hardship Policy.
Our Community Support Line is open for all residents experiencing hardship or vulnerability due to COVID-19. Services available include emergency food relief, delivered meals, referral to specialist agencies, social connections program and help with shopping and in home care.