There has been a raft of support measures introduced to help NSW businesses and individuals during the extended 2021 COVID-19 lockdown.
Outlined below is a summary of those measures including some frequently asked questions regarding the 2021 COVID-19 Business Support Grant:
2021 COVID-19 Business Support Grant
The 2021 COVID-19 business grant provides support for businesses that experienced reduced demand or had to close due to the public health orders. It will support businesses with aggregated turnover between $75,000 and $50 million and up to total annual Australian wages of $10 million.
Three different grant amounts will be available depending on the decline in turnover experienced over a minimum 2-week period from 26 June 2021 to 17 July 2021, compared to the same period in 2019:
- $7,500 for a decline of 30% or more
- $10,500 for a decline of 50% or more
- $15,000 for a decline of 70% or more
More details regarding this grant and details regarding applications can be found here: https://www.service.nsw.gov.au/transaction/2021-covid-19-business-grant
Applications are now open and close on 13 September 2021
2021 COVID-19 Micro Business Grants
If you’re a micro-business (small business, sole trader or not-for-profit organisation with aggregated annual turnover between $30,000 and $75,000) impacted by the recent COVID-19 restrictions, you may be eligible to apply for a fortnightly payment of $1,500 to cover business expenses for the duration of the Greater Sydney lockdown if you have experienced a decline in turnover of 30% or more due to public health orders over a minimum 2-week period within the Greater Sydney lockdown.
Non-employing businesses are not eligible to apply for this grant if anyone associated with the business or who derives income from it has received the Commonwealth COVID-19 disaster payment. For employing businesses, your employees can receive Commonwealth COVID-19 disaster payments if you receive this grant.
Businesses that received the $1,500 small business fees and charges rebate can apply for this grant.
More details regarding this grant can be found here: https://www.service.nsw.gov.au/transaction/2021-covid-19-micro-business-grant
Applications are now open and close on 18 October 2021.
Eligible businesses and not-for-profit organisations with employees and national aggregated annual turnover between $75,000 and $250 million for the year ended 30 June 2020 will receive fortnightly payments backdated to cover costs incurred from week 4 of the Greater Sydney lockdown (from 18 July 2021 onwards) if they have experienced a decline in turnover of 30% or more due to the lockdown.
The payment will be equivalent to 40% of the weekly payroll for work performed in NSW:
- minimum payment will be $1,500 per week
- maximum payment will be $100,000 per week
If you are a non-employing business, such as a sole trader, you may be eligible to receive a payment of $1,000 per week. Non-employing businesses are not eligible for the JobSaver payment if anyone associated with the business or who derives income from it, has received a Commonwealth COVID-19 Disaster Payment since 18 July 2021.
More details regarding this payment and details regarding applications can be found here: https://www.service.nsw.gov.au/transaction/jobsaver-payment
Applications are now open and close on 18 October 2021.
COVID-19 Disaster Payment
This is a payment for workers who have been unable to earn income due to the COVID-19 lockdown. For workers not already receiving income-support, there are two tiers of payments depending on number of work hours lost:
- $325/$375/$450 if you lost 8 –20 hours of work per week or a full day of your usual work hours
- $500/$600/$750 if you lost more than 20 hours per week
- People already receiving income-support who have lost more than eight hours of work a week will get a special disaster supplement of $200 a week
You can apply for this payment here. Claims for the week of 1 July 2021 closed on 28 July 2021 and will close weekly thereafter (e.g. claims for the week of 8 July 2021 close on 4 August 2021 and so on).
Support with tenancy (residential)
Residential tenants who have suffered a 25% or more loss of income due to the lockdown will be protected from being evicted.
There are also land tax relief or grants for landlords who reduce the rent of lockdown impacted tenants. Land tax relief is provided to landowners who reduce rent for COVID-19 affected tenants between 1 July and 31 December 2021 up to 100% of their 2021 land tax liability. Landowners who do not pay land tax can alternatively apply for up to $1500 grant per residential tenancy.
Support with tenancy (commercial)
Landlords cannot evict retail or commercial tenancies without mediation. Land tax relief is available for landlords who reduce the rent for impacted tenants, up to 100% of their 2021 land tax liability.
These protections will last for the whole lockdown. Land tax relief is provided to landowners who reduce rent for COVID-19 affected tenants between 1 July and 31 December 2021.
Payroll Tax support
All NSW businesses who have a payroll tax liability have the option of deferring lodgement and payment of their 2020–21 annual reconciliation until 7 October 2021.
Businesses required to lodge monthly returns will also have the option of deferring their returns due in August and September until 7 October 2021. In addition, all payroll tax customers that defer their payments are eligible for an interest free payment plan of up to 12 months.
Targeted support is available through Revenue NSW, with payroll tax deferrals already available for all businesses and a 25% reduction on the 2021–22 payroll tax reconciliation for eligible businesses.
Businesses with wages between $1.2 million and $10 million that have experienced a 30% decline in turnover will get a 25% reduction of their 2021–22 payroll tax.
Hospitality and tourism COVID-19 support grant
This will be made available to tourism or hospitality businesses that have a turnover of more than $75,000 and an annual Australian wages bill of below $10 million, as at 1 July 2020.
These businesses must have an Australian Business Number (ABN) registered in New South Wales or be able to demonstrate they are physically located and primarily operating in New South Wales. (Full criteria will be available in coming days on the Service NSW website).
Gaming machine tax relief
There will be a deferral of gaming tax assessments for clubs until 21 December 2021 and hotels until 21 January 2022.
Please refer to NSW Revenue for further information: https://www.revenue.nsw.gov.au/news-media-releases/covid-19-tax-relief-measures/covid-19-coronavirus-and-gaming-machine-tax?SQ_VARIATION_822715=0
Small business fees and charges rebate
Sole traders, owners of a small business and not-for-profits may be eligible for a fees and charges rebate of $1,500 to offset the costs of eligible NSW and local government charges due and paid from 1 March 2021. This rebate is available until 30 June 2022.
Further details regarding this rebate can be found here: https://www.service.nsw.gov.au/small-business-fees-and-charges-rebate
Support for not-for-profit and commercial performing arts organisations and music venues
The NSW Government has announced a $75 million package for not-for-profit and commercial performing arts organisations, and live music organisations impacted by the cancellation of shows due to current COVID-19 restrictions.
Further details regarding this package and details regarding applications can be found here: https://www.create.nsw.gov.au/funding-and-support/nsw-performing-arts-covid-support-package/
Frequently asked questions (FAQs) – COVID-19 Business Grants
What is included in ‘aggregated annual turnover’?
National aggregated annual turnover means the annual Australian turnover for your business as well as the annual Australian turnover of any business that is “connected with you” or any business that is your “affiliate” for the year ended 30 June 2020.
Annual turnover includes all ordinary income you earned in the ordinary course of running your business, including trading stock sales, fees for services you provide, interest from business bank accounts and amounts received to replace business income. It does not include amounts such as GST charged on transactions, amounts borrowed, proceeds from selling business capital assets, certain insurance proceeds and JobKeeper payments. It does not include non-assessable, non-exempt (NANE) income. Remember, annual turnover is a reference to gross income, not net profit.
Should the decline in turnover be calculated on a cash or accrual basis?
Decline in turnover will be measured based on the GST turnover of your business. As such, if your business accounts for GST on an accrual basis, you should use this method. If your business accounts for GST on a cash basis, you should use this method.
If an accountant’s letter always required to show annual Australian wages, and decline in turnover?
A letter from a practitioner (qualified accountant, registered tax agent or registered BAS agent) confirming the decline in turnover must be lodged if your business is not on the ‘highly impacted industries list’.
Refer to Attachment A: List of highly impacted industries of the COVID-19 Business Grant Guidelines: https://www.service.nsw.gov.au/2021-covid-19-business-grant-guidelines#attachment-a-list-of-highly-impacted-industries
Businesses report on a monthly or quarterly basis, how can the decline in turnover be calculated over a two-week period?
The GST definition of turnover will be applied when assessing whether an applicant experienced the required decline in national turnover. You will need to apportion your GST turnover reported in your monthly or quarterly BAS so that you only include your GST turnover related to a two-week period between 26 June 2021 and 17 July 2021 and the corresponding period in June and/or July 2019.
The guideline eligibility states that a minimum two-week period of decline can be shown. Can a business use the full three-week period to show the decline?
Yes, a business will be able to use the full three-week period to show decline in turnover.
Is a business eligible for the grant where they are not paying wages (e.g. director drawing down on loans)?
Non-employing businesses (including sole traders) are eligible to apply for this Grant if all the eligibility requirements are met. However, non-employing businesses are not eligible to apply if persons associated with the business, and who derive income from it, have applied for, or are receiving, the Commonwealth COVID-19 Disaster Payment.
How does JobSaver affect whether a business may be able to receive the 2021 COVID-19 Business Grant?
JobSaver will not have an impact on the 2021 COVID-19 Business Grant. JobSaver commences on 18 July 2021, whereas the Grant is designed to support businesses from 26 June 2021 to 17 July 2021.
Can a sole trader receive the Commonwealth COVID-19 Disaster Payment and the 2021 COVID-19 Business Grant?
No, a sole trader cannot receive both the Commonwealth COVID-19 Disaster Payment and the Grant. Non-employing businesses (including sole traders) are not eligible to apply if persons associated with the business, and who derive income from it, have applied for, or are receiving, the Commonwealth COVID-19 Disaster Payment.
Please contact your Blaze Acumen advisor if you have any questions regarding the matters above.