Gurmesh Singh MP

SINGH WELCOMES COVID-19 FIGHTING FUND

The NSW Government has announced a comprehensive economic support package worth billions of dollars aimed at helping businesses and people across the state fight through the current COVID-19 lockdown.

Member for Coffs Harbour Gurmesh Singh said the commitment will now be up to $5.1 billion, including more than $1 billion from the Commonwealth as part of a business and employee support program.

“This comprehensive package has three key aims – protecting business, saving and keeping jobs through the lockdown and ensuring people have support during an uncertain and difficult time,” Mr Singh said.

“The NSW Government will do whatever it takes to protect the people of this state and keep our economy strong.  While our health and medical staff are fighting COVID-19 on the frontline, this comprehensive support package is aimed at saving jobs and protecting businesses until the lockdown is over.”

Key components of the 2021 COVID-19 package include:

  • The NSW Government will cover the disaster recovery payments for areas outside the Commonwealth declared hotspot from week four of the NSW lockdown providing valuable support across the state;
  • An extension to the previously announced business grants program. This means eligible businesses with Australian wages below $10 million can claim grants between $7,500 and $15,000 to cover the first three-weeks of restrictions, and takes the potential size of the program to $2.1 billion;
  • Up to $2 billion committed to the scheme to provide cashflow support to businesses to help them retain staff, to be delivered together with the Commonwealth.
  • Payroll tax waivers of 25 per cent for businesses with Australian wages of between $1.2 million and $10 million that have experienced a 30 per cent decline in turnover, as well as payroll tax deferrals and interest free repayment plans;
  • A new grants program for micro businesses with a turnover of between $30,000 and $75,000 which experience a decline in turnover of 30 per cent. The businesses will be eligible for a $1500 payment per fortnight of restrictions.
  • A capped grant of up to $1,500 for residential landlords who are not liable to pay land tax who reduce rent for tenants estimated at $210 million;
  • Land tax relief equal to the value of rent reductions provided by commercial, retail and residential landlords to financially distressed tenants, up to 100 per cent of the 2021 land tax year liability;
  • Introduction of legislative amendments to ensure a short-term eviction moratorium for rental arrears where a residential tenant suffers loss of income of 25 per cent due to COVID-19 and meets a range of criteria.
  • No recovery of security bonds, or lockouts or evictions of impacted retail and commercial tenants prior to mediation;
  • Deferral of gaming tax assessments for clubs;
  • A $75 million support package for the performing arts sector to be administered by Create NSW;
  • A support package for the accommodation sector worth $26 million;
  • $12 million in additional funding for temporary accommodation for those at risk of or experiencing homelessness, and
  • $5.1 million in NSW funding to support mental health.