A listing of where businesses can go for information, resources and support in relation to COVID-19.
Last Updated: 2 October 2020. Certified by the Chief Executive Officer in accordance with Council’s Election Period Policy.
New information and support programs are being announced regularly, so it's important to seek out accurate and current information from reliable sources, such as the Government websites listed below. Businesses should also seek advice from their accountants about what support programs they may be eligible for.
Some businesses have successfully implemented new initiatives in order to keep operating, such as offering takeaway, delivery and online sales and consultations. Keeping social media and websites up-to-date has also proved very important, as this is where customers are going for information.
If you would like further information or to talk through your situation, please contact Council’s Investment Attraction & Business Support Team on 5220 7111 or [email protected]
For the latest information relating to COVID-19 please visit the Victorian Government Department of Health and Human Services website or call the COVID-19 hotline on 1800 675 398.
COVID-19 BUSINESS UPDATES
Sign up to receive business updates, including COVID-19 business updates for Golden Plains businesses here.
Download past copies of the COVID-19 Business Updates:
COVID-19 Business Update #5 - 7 August 2020
COVID-19 Business Update #4 - 30 July 2020
COVID-19 Business Update #3 - 3 April 2020
COVID-19 Business Update #2 – 23 March 2020
COVID-19 Business Update #1– 20 March 2020
BE KIND TO BUSINESS
How has COVID-19 impacted your business and what support do you need? Have you had to change the way you sell your product or deliver a service in response to the crisis? Let us know so that we can help promote your business as part of the Be Kind Golden Plains campaign here, and let people know that you are still trading.
COUNCIL SUPPORT AND ASSISTANCE
Council’s Business Support team have been busy: checking-in on businesses to see how they have been impacted; sending business support e-newsletters; developing a business listing of those businesses still operating for Council’s website; providing regular updates to State and Federal Governments on the impact to Golden Plains businesses; and working on making small business training/mentoring programs remotely accessible.
Golden Plains Shire Council has confirmed the following financial support measures for local business, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic:
- Introduction of a Special COVID-19 Financial Hardship Policy for local businesses
- Commitment to pay invoices from all local businesses within 14 days to support cash flow
- Extension of time applications for business-related septic tank and planning permits expiring before 30 September 2020 can be lodged at no cost
- Refund of all permit fees for events and activities that have been cancelled or closed as directed by Government
- New allowance for commercial businesses to reduce their waste collection arrangements if necessary
- Free mentoring support for small businesses experiencing hardship
- Free promotion of local businesses on Council’s website and social media with Be Kind to Business campaign: goldenplains.vic.gov.au/business/be-kind-business
- Dedicated COVID-19 business support page on Council's website with links to Federal and State Government programs: goldenplains.vic.gov.au/business/covid-19-business-support
- Access to dedicated business support officer within Council for local businesses to receive individual assistance
- Council will continue budgeted capital works as scheduled to maximise local business and employment opportunities
FEDERAL GOVERNMENT SUPPORT AND ASSISTANCE
Latest information and support from the Federal Government, including financial assistance, tax support, continuing your business, eligibility and timing for the new government support for Australian businesses.
Updates and information for exporters trying to manage the impact of COVID-19.
ATO Support for businesses
If you are experiencing difficulties with tax obligations because of COVID-19, phone the ATO Emergency Support Infoline on 1800 806 218 for help tailored to your circumstances. You can also talk to your tax or BAS agent so they can work with the ATO to support you to manage your tax affairs.
Fairwork Ombudsman information
The Fair Work Ombudsman has answers to frequently asked questions for employers in relation to COVID-19 and Australian workplace laws.
VICTORIAN GOVERNMENT SUPPORT FOR BUSINESSES
Business Victoria has a dedicated Business Hotline 13 22 15. Latest information and support from the Victorian State Government.
Outdoor Eating and Entertainment Package Business Grants
Eligible hospitality businesses in Golden Plains Shire can now apply for grants of up to $5,000 from the Victorian Government's Outdoor Eating and Entertainment Package to adapt to outdoor dining. Funds can be used to pay for practical things like umbrellas, outdoor furniture, screens and other equipment. Recipients can also use grants for training, marketing and other costs of adapting new, expanded or enhanced outdoor dining. Click the button below to find out more and apply:
Small Business Victoria
Small Business Victoria has released some practical tools/checklists which can get business owners to start thinking about mitigation plans and maximising cashflow. Resources are provided by CPA Australia and can be found here:
VICTORIAN DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
For the latest information relating to Covid-19 please visit the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services website or call the Coronavirus hotline on 1800 675 398.
VICTORIAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY
VCCI is providing a range of resources, including webinars for businesses being affected by the COVID-19 virus.
GEELONG CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
Geelong Chamber of Commerce is providing a range of resources, including webinars for businesses in Geelong and the surrounding area being affected by the COVID-19 virus.
Commerce Ballarat is providing a range of resources, including webinars for businesses in Ballarat and the surrounding area affected by COVID-19.
TOURISM GREATER GEELONG AND THE BELLARINE
TGGB is providing resources and information for business in the visitor and tourism industry in Geelong and the surrounding area.
nbn is waiving charges for additional capacity of up to 40 percent to Retail Service Providers (RSPs) for at least three months to help them support Australian residential and business nbn customers. The additional capacity pricing relief will apply to all fixed line, fixed wireless and satellite nbn technologies. Check their website for latest updates, working from home tips and FAQs.
BANKING AND FINANCIAL HARDSHIP
Your bank should also be a critical point of contact. There are many practical ways in which your financial institution can support you during this period. Support could include:
- deferring loan payments
- waiving fees and charges
- helping with debt consolidation
- waiving penalties for early withdrawal of term deposits
- deferring upcoming credit card payments and increasing emergency limits
Contact your bank’s financial hardship team via web or phone.
RURAL FINANCIAL COUNSELLING SERVICE
RFCS has extended its free, independent, professional planning and support service for farmers, to now also support anyone in rural Victoria who is experiencing financial hardship. RFCS provide support and information on financial and legal matters for rural farms, businesses and families in need of assistance.
VICTORIAN SMALL BUSINESS COMMISSION
Victorian Small Business Commission can provide assistance and facilitate mediation if a landlord and tenant are dealing with a situation where the tenant is having difficulty paying rent as a result of COVID-19.
SMALL BUSINESS MENTORING SERVICE
The Small Business Mentoring Service is continuing to provide mentoring for small business operators via video or telephone. If you are interested in signing up for a free one-on-one mentoring session, please contact the Business Support Team at Council on 5220 7111 or [email protected]. SBMS also has regular COVID-19 updates on its website for businesses.
Find out how to prevent and deal with exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace and how to minimise the spread of the virus.